Tyra Pendergrass, MEM

Research Assistant
Yale University – Department of Internal Medicine
New Haven, CT

“The greatest leaders among us have the hearts of servants; understanding that they are continually at the service of a particular idea, community, or position in a multitude of capacities.”

Tyra Pendergrass’ passion lies at the intersection of the environment and human health, particularly in low income and communities of color.   “I became interested in environmental health while studying abroad in South Africa as an undergraduate. I volunteered in a local township, where the residents lived in subpar environmental conditions. Through that experience, I began to develop a deeper understanding of the essential role that one’s environment can play in one’s health and ultimately quality of life.”

Her long-term goals include research and community engagement. “I want to be instrumental in designing environmental health research projects for communities:  I want to help educate communities about environmental health issues that specifically affect them and ultimately empowering them to enact change.”

Pendergrass received her bachelor’s degree in biology, with a minor in chemistry at Howard University and earned her master’s in environmental management, with a concentration in environmental health and justice at Yale University.

In her free time, she enjoys traveling to different countries, attending live theater performances and concerts, and volunteering.