Amita N. Vyas, PhD, MHS, is a tenured Associate Professor at the George Washington University (GW) and Producer of Girl Rising India. At the age of 20, Amita journeyed to Calcutta, India to work alongside Mother Teresa in the Missionaries of Charity. In one eye-opening summer, she was immersed in the relationship between health, education, and social inequities affecting vulnerable populations. From that extraordinary experience, inspired by a simple desire to serve those in need, she decided to pursue a career in public health. This early experience working alongside suffering and devastation continues to play a role in her teaching, scholarship, practice, and service to communities, and it is through this lens of empathy that she has led efforts to address the health, education, and well-being of women, children, and families locally, nationally, and globally.
Dr. Vyas earned her Masters in Demography and Doctorate in Population and Family Health Sciences at the Johns Hopkins University, receiving awards for outstanding academic achievement. She is the Director of the Maternal & Child Health Masters in Public Health program, and conducts research on teen pregnancy prevention; social media use and health; evaluation of interventions/programs; and health behaviors and violence against girls and women. Dr. Vyas is the recipient of several awards including the George Washington University Bender Teaching Award; the National Delta-Omega Honor Society Award for Innovative Curriculum; and was selected for the Impact Center’s National Women’s Leadership Fellowship.
In 2007, Dr. Vyas founded the Global India Fund, a non-profit organization committed to inspiring global and service by supporting innovative game-changing non-profit organizations and programs. Dr. Vyas resides in Mclean Virginia with her husband and three young children (Saira12, Shaan 10, and Neera 8). She is a champion for women, children, and families in the United States and globally.