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College of Education Student Follows Passion for Helping Tobacco-Users

Sierra Miley

Written by Chelsea Hobbs, News Intern

Sierrah Miley, a senior in the Department of Kinesiology and Health Promotion, is passionate about helping others improve their health.

She recently returned from the Atlantis Clinical Fellowship, where she shadowed surgeons in neurology, ears/nose/throat, and obstetrics and gynecology in Lisbon, Portugal.

“The culture was amazing,” she said. “I had never been out of America, so it was a unique experience.”

Miley hopes to be a physician and has worked in a cardiology office as part of her preparation for applying to medical school. It helped spark her interest in working with tobacco-users.

“I saw first-hand how drastically tobacco has affected Kentuckians,” she said.

At UK, Miley has been working as a Tobacco-Free Take Action (TFTA) Ambassadorsince her freshman year. The ambassadors promote and implement the campus tobacco-free policy. She also works as an #iCANendthetrend facilitator. The UK students in the program travel across the Commonwealth reaching middle and high schoolers about the negative effects of e-cigarettes.

The next project on Miley’s list is tobacco treatment specialist training, which will lead to certification in treatingtobacco dependence across a range of settings.

“I want to help people fully understand what tobacco is doing to them and how they can quit, even if they’ve been a user for years,” she said.

Miley works to stay up to date on tobacco research. This summer, she will attend the Kentucky Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (KAHPERD) conference and the National Conference on Tobacco or Health (NCTOH), where she will be presenting.

For more information about how you can make a difference by earning a degree from the UK College of Education Department of Kinesiology and Health Promotion, visit https://education.uky.edu/khp/.