Brianna E. Parsons VMD, MSEd
- Lecturer in Sustainable Agriculture | School of Veterinary Medicine - New Bolton Center
- Gambia | Botswana
- Environmental and Planetary Health | Maternal and Child Nutrition | Social Entrepreneurship
Languages: English, Mandinka (beginner)
Dr. Brianna Parsons is a veterinarian by training with a MSEd in Education Entrepreneurship. She is a Lecturer in Sustainable Agriculture at Penn Vet and Executive Director of Gambia Goat Dairy, a community-led teaching and research farm using agriculture to improve community health and wellbeing, reduce poverty, promote food sovereignty, and foster environmental stewardship. Her interests in global health center on agriculture, given animal-source foods role in preventing malnutrition, and due to agriculture's potential to foster inclusive economic development. Brianna is a systems thinker and looks for opportunities address the UN SDG's holistically, to build a more livable future.
Recent Global Health Projects
I am the co-founder and executive director of Gambia Goat Dairy, a social-entrepreneurial initiative leveraging sustainable agriculture to improve community health and wellbeing, reduce poverty, promote food sovereignty, and foster environmental stewardship. We have been in operation since 2016 and recently were awarded a Penn Global Holman Africa Research and Engagement Fund award to scale the operation into a community-led teaching and research farm over the next three years.
I am also working on a Penn Global Engagement Fund sponsored project in Botswana with the two objectives of 1) conducting a feasibility assessment to identify global health opportunities in agriculture & nutrition, and 2) refining an ‘entrepreneurial methodology’ to identify high-impact opportunities for community-centered agricultural development by comparing our feasibility assessment methodologies in Botswana with what we’ve used in The Gambia over the past 6+ years.
Both of these projects investigate the role of animal-source foods in preventing stunting malnutrition and other 'hidden hungers' which are underlying factors contributing to over 45% of global deaths of children under 5 years of age. We investigate the interconnectivity of poverty and malnutrition and use agriculture as a tool to improve both holistically.