JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Florida State College at Jacksonville (FSCJ) Professor of Biological Sciences Dr. Lourdes Norman-McKay was selected for the 2022-23 cohort of Jefferson Science Fellows (JSF), an initiative of the Office of the Science and Technology Adviser to the U.S. Secretary of State. The program is designed to further build capacity for science, technology and engineering expertise within the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).
Jefferson Science Fellows spend one year on assignment at the U.S. Department of State or USAID contributing to the work of foreign policy or international development issues. Assignments are tailored to the needs of the hosting office, while taking into account the Fellows’ interests and areas of expertise. Following the fellowship year, Fellows will return to their academic career but remain available to the U.S. government as experienced consultants for short-term projects.
Dr. Norman-McKay will be serving in the Office of the Secretary, Office of Global AIDS Coordinator – one of the few offices at the State Department that reports directly to the U.S. Secretary of State. This office traditionally oversees HIV/AIDS prevention and relief. President Joe Biden recently expanded the office’s mission to orchestrate COVID relief and management in low- and middle-income nations.
“I’m honored to have been selected and excited to serve in this role. As a Special Assistant in this office, I’ll be collaborating with a broad swath of stakeholders from the NIH, CDC, African CDC, the U.S. Congress, the White House, and over 50 foreign governments,” said Dr. Norman-McKay. “There are excellent logistics lines in place for globally combating HIV/AIDS, and we can leverage that extant infrastructure for preventing COVID and maintaining a pulse on other emerging infectious agents.”
“We are incredibly proud of Dr. Norman-McKay for her selection into this prestigious program. It’s important to highlight that, of the 14 selected fellows, she is the only one who represents an open access institution,” said College President John Avendano, Ph.D. “Dr. Norman-McKay brings a wealth of knowledge, expertise and insight to our College community and we are pleased she has this opportunity to further share her gifts to elevate health and wellness on this global level.”
Applicants were evaluated based on multiple criteria including: stature, recognition, and experience in the national and international scientific, technical, engineering or medical communities; ability to rapidly and accurately understand scientific advancements both within and outside their discipline area and to effectively integrate this knowledge into U.S. Department of State and USAID policy discussions; ability to identify and articulate science and technology to the non-specialist/general public; benefit of the fellowship to the applicant and the applicant’s academic institution; and related experience which may positively influence the success of the applicant in this fellowship.
To see the full 2022-23 cohort, visit sites.nationalacademies.org/PGA/Jefferson/PGA_373242.