Dena Simmons

dena picDena Simmons, (MSEd), is a doctoral student in Health Education at Columbia University, Teachers College. Her research centers around health disparities. She has varied research interests, including the experiences of trans people of color in the healthcare system, the health risks associated with performing masculinity in the school setting, and the effects of educational policy on the health of the nation’s children. She has served as a public health volunteer in Antigua, where she worked with the Directorate of Gender Affairs to provide better health services for Dominican sex workers. Dena has also studied the collaboration between schools and health agencies in efforts to prevent teenage pregnancy with a Fulbright Scholarship in the Dominican Republic. Before her doctoral studies, Dena was a middle school teacher in her hometown, the Bronx, New York. Her goal is to work toward making schools and hospitals safer, inclusive, and healthy environments for all.