Pien Huang

Pien Huang is NPR's first Reflect America Fellow, working with shows, desks and podcasts to bring more diverse voices to air and online. She's a former producer for WBUR/NPR's On Point and was a 2018 Environmental Reporting Fellow with The GroundTruth Project at WCAI in Cape Cod, covering the human impact on climate change. As a freelance audio and digital reporter, Huang's stories on the environment, arts and culture have been featured on NPR, the BBC, and PRI's The World.

Huang's experiences span categories and continents. She was executive producer of Data Made to Matter, a podcast from the MIT Sloan School of Management, and was also an adjunct instructor in podcasting and audio journalism at Northeastern University. She worked as a project manager for public artist Ralph Helmick to help plan and execute The Founder's Memorial in Abu Dhabi, and with Stoltze Design to tell visual stories through graphic design. Huang has traveled with scientists looking for signs of environmental change in Cameroon's frogs, in Panama's plants, and in the ocean water off the ice edge of Antarctica. She has a degree in environmental science and public policy from Harvard.

Alexandra Chen was a trauma specialist working in Lebanon and Jordan when she noticed that a specific group of kids were struggling in schools.

Chen kept getting referrals for refugee students who had fled the war in Syria. They were having trouble focusing and finishing schoolwork. Some had even dropped out of school.

Better vaccines, nutrition and disease control have cut the global death rate for children in half over the past 20 years. But even within countries that have made major progress, children can face greatly different fates.

"Where you're born substantially impacts your probability of surviving to 5," says Simon Hay, an epidemiologist at the University of Washington who is the lead author of a new study on childhood mortality in Nature.

Precision medicine is the field of dreams for human health. Drugs and treatments that would take into account a person's individual DNA configurations, as well as lifestyle and environment, would presumably be better tailored to each person's needs. Still, while the goal of precision medicine is to help everybody, the current research available has a major flaw. It's largely based on the genes of people who are predominantly of white and European descent.