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Alumni Spotlight: Dr. Daniel W. Bradford

For Daniel W. Bradford, MD, MPH, the Clinical Scholars Program was a life changing experience - one that impacted his career enormously. After learning about the Program from his medical school peers, Dr. Bradford applied and was accepted as a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholar.

Daniel W. Bradford, MD, MPH, is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill earning both his medical degree and his master’s in public health epidemiology. Bradford also spent two years at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill as a Clinical Scholar.

Passionate about public health, Bradford had already begun a project with an outreach clinic for homeless people with mental illnesses, even before becoming a fellow. As a fellow however, Bradford set out to continue this work with a randomized control trial of a shelter based case management intervention for homeless people suffering from mental illness and substance abuse. “I focused my work on this primary project, but also did a few other secondary data analysis projects as well.” The project was successful. The paper that resulted from Bradford’s work was published in Medical Care.
For Dr. Bradford, one of the most valuable things about the Program was the mentorship opportunity. “My mentorship helped to lead me into the field I am in now, and I’m convinced it help me get the job that I wanted,” says Bradford. “Working with my mentor was an amazing experience – he was and is always willing to help me – it’s made a profound difference to me and my career.”

In addition to the mentorship, Bradford tells us that another valuable component of the Clinical Scholars Program is the “time to think.” Bradford notes, “The protected time to experience the Program is extraordinary. I completed a master’s in epidemiology as a Scholar – to have that time and to not be on call 24 hours a day is extremely valuable.”

Dr. Bradford is now Director of the Psychosocial Rehabilitation and Recovery Center and Inter-professional Fellowship on Psychosocial Rehabilitation and Recovery Services. Bradford credits the Clinical Scholars program with providing him the opportunity to form relationships with outstanding leaders in the field of public health. “The quality of the relationships I built as a Clinical Scholar is fundamentally different – its people coming together who want to solve a problem – and that can be very powerful.”

Not only would Bradford recommend the Clinical Scholars Program to others, he’s made a habit of doing so. “Yes, I’d absolutely recommend the program – I have in the past and will certainly continue to do so in the future.”

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