Amogh Bandekar is a third year Economics and Biology major at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte who has been has been an advocate, researcher, and service provider for the past three years. Focusing on reducing tobacco use, addressing health disparities, and creating innovative risk reduction strategies for homeless people in Charlotte, Amogh has blended scientific investigation with information dissemination and product development. He has conducted funded research, developed curricula, created new student organizations, and is a member of the Clinton Global Initiative University. Amogh aspires to be a physician, researcher, and policy analyst and is building a solid foundation to enhance health and well-being on the individual patient, community and national level. Amogh has contributed to the presentation and publication of his findings, and continues to integrate his research with applied solutions to health care challenges.
Volunteering as a medical assistant at a low-cost clinic in the heart of Charlotte, I realized that addressing health inequities required an integrated effort combining public health innovation, health policy, and medicine, that extends beyond the clinic. As a result, I devoted my undergraduate efforts to enhancing and researching the factors through which individuals and communities can address these health disparities. From founding my own NSF-backed startup, SolCooking, that develops solar cookers for homeless individuals in the Charlotte community, to advocating for Medicaid Expansion for small business during COVID-19 with the North Carolina Business Council, to a community-based fellowship with the Clinton Foundation focused on developing and co-teaching a 1-credit hour course on public health innovation at Charlotte, I have worked to improve and advocate for my community. Along with these efforts, I have designed and evaluated the implementation of a tobacco-free campus policy at behavioral health centers in Charlotte, conducted health econometric studies on cigarette behavior, and worked on health service research through an internship with the U.S. Census Bureau. I aspire to pursue a career as a physician-scientist that bridges medicine and health policy, in turn enhancing patient and population health on multiple levels of community interaction.