Letting Her Light Shine

RSPH dean's council scholarship supports student's research

Jacqueline Cutts in Uganda.

Newborns in Uganda are getting a better shot at survival, thanks to a Rollins School of Public Health (RSPH) scholarship student.

Jacqueline Cutts 14MPH of Idaho is studying the effect of adequate lighting on birth outcomes in Uganda. Without lights, doctors often cannot see clearly enough to detect complications, perform life-saving surgeries, or identify and stop bleeding.

Through SAFE (Safe Mothers-Safe Babies), a nonprofit Cutts founded and operated for three years in Uganda before graduate school, and a partner organization, We Care Solar, she installed “solar suitcases” in hospitals with no electricity.

Cutts is now analyzing data from her work, and preliminary findings suggest that the new lamps produce a 35 percent increase in safe deliveries.

Cutts, who majored in political science at Vassar College, is funded at Rollins through the Dean’s Council Scholarship, which helps cover tuition. The RSPH Dean’s Council is an advisory body of local and state business and community leaders.

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