Who I Am


  • JEDI Fellow ’22,
  • NIH Diversity Supplement Recipient

PhD Major: Environmental Health and Epidemiology

A Bit About Me

My name is Kellin D. Slater. I am a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Environmental and Radiological Health Sciences studying Environmental Health and Epidemiology. My long-term research and professional goals involve deepening my understanding of implementation science and environmental health to understand respiratory health outcomes and biomarkers of exposure and susceptibility in household air and energy interventions. My academic training and research experiences include applied physics and scientific writing. I pivoted toward environmental epidemiology as it allows me to use my science communication background and analytic skills to better understand health impacts in low-resource settings. In my off time, I love cooking, playing the harp, gardening, playing games, watercolor painting, beadwork, and weightlifting.

What I Hope To Do

Exposure to household air pollution (HAP) is a top-ten risk factor for morbidity and mortality worldwide and the third leading contributor to the burden of disease in Rwanda. Access to modern energy has been proposed as a fundamental human right, yet 3 billion people globally still rely on traditional energy sources (e.g., wood, charcoal, kerosene) to support household needs such as cooking, heating, and lighting. Access to clean, lower-emission energy is challenging in rural areas of low- and middle-income countries like Rwanda. With this grant, I hope to visit with the participants of the study and work with our fantastic field team to help determine if whole-house energy interventions (i.e., for cooking and lighting) produce meaningful HAP reductions and health benefits in rural Rwandan homes for the SHEAR ( Sustainable Household Energy Adoption in Rwanda) Study.

The award from the Africa Center will allow me to travel to Rwanda, engage with the study community meaningfully, and work closely with the research team to ensure data quality in the field and assist them with lung function testing and cook stove validation.

My Personal Thanks

I want to take a moment to thank the Colorado State Univerity Africa Center and Donors for this opportunity to work more closely with the SHEAR study community. In research of this type, it is essential to forge strong bonds with the field team and to be present and active in the study community. Our project is not just about the science and health improvements; it is also about being reliable technical support for the community and helping to advocate for cleaner, safer household environments through collaboration.