Melanoma Advocate Cody Barnett '11
Written by: Emma Simpson '23
Political Science major Cody Barnett ’11 currently works at Melanoma Research Alliance (MRA). He is responsible for developing articles to help people better understand melanoma and share new research on the disease, as well as create stories and strategies to further MRA’s mission. When he is not at work, Barnett enjoys exploring new restaurants, practicing yoga, and hanging out with his greyhound Huron Louise.
Barnett says, “My favorite part of my work at the Melanoma Research Alliance is supporting patients and families as they navigate the complex realities of having cancer. Research advances over the last decade have transformed what it means to be diagnosed with and treated for melanoma, but that doesn’t mean that our healthcare system is easy or intuitive for folks to navigate.”
Barnett has found a good fit for his abilities in the field of medical research. “In my work at MRA,” he says, “I have had the distinct pleasure of interviewing dozens of researchers and clinicians, including Jim Allison. In 2018, Jim Allison was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine for his work discovering how to ‘turn off’ the brakes on the body’s immune system, enabling the immune system to fight cancer.”
Barnett's time at York College encouraged his interest in unique fields. He made connections that helped him get to where he is today.
“This isn’t where I saw myself going,” he says, “but I do think that I’d be proud of where I’ve landed. As a Political Science major at YCP, I became very interested in the laws, policies, and practices that impact the health of people.” He credits the late Dr. Melvin Kulbicki, “who encouraged me to look into graduate school programs in public health. He helped me understand how to turn my personal interests into a meaningful career.”