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San Francisco State University

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In the past, the study of addiction has often been focused on substances — like heroin, marijuana and alcohol. But experts in the field now believe that addiction begins with the “reward circuitry” in the brain rather than the substances themselves.

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Alcoholism forced 20-year-old Amy to move away from Santa Barbara and everything she knew. She had begun drinking at age 16 and a pattern of dependence started soon after, forcing her into a succession of rehabilitation facilities before she moved to Oklahoma in an attempt to break the cycle.

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Reporters covering truancy often conclude that poor students and students of color who skip school do so because they don't care about education. But many of the students want to go to school but can't for a variety of reasons.

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Career archivist Kim Klausner takes her roles as a historian and as a public health advocate equally seriously. As the Industry Documents Digital Libraries Manager for the University of California-San Francisco, she is in charge of the Drug Industry Documents Archive, a collection of thousands of records that shine a light on practices by Wyeth, Pfizer, Abbott and other Big Pharma companies.

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Susan Sperber is principal of the Education for Change World Academy, a charter school in Oakland, Calif. Previously, she was principal of Hawthorne Elementary School in Oakland. She came to teach at this inner city school quite reluctantly in 1983. At the time, she was looking for work with an emergency credential while studying to be a teacher at San Francisco State University.

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Sean Connelley and Katy Newton teamed up in 2004 while working for the Oakland Tribune. Inspired by the integration of multimedia and web-based news sites across the country, Mr. Connelley and Ms. Newton saw an opportunity to develop their passion for documentary storytelling.

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Linda Civitello, president and CEO of Breathe California, a Daly City-based organization working to reduce the impact of lung disease through prevention, education, advocacy and patient services. As president and CEO, Civitello utilizes her extensive experience in community service, urban planning and government affairs.

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Ms. Ikeda is a nutrition education specialist with the College of Natural Resources' cooperative extension. She is a nationally recognized expert on pediatric obesity and the dietary practices of ethnic and immigrant populations. She is a pioneer in conducting community collaborative research on the food habits and dietary quality of California's low-income, immigrant and ethnic populations, and has developed culturally sensitive and relevant educational programs for these groups.

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Mr. Carson graduated Phi Beta Kappa with bachelor's degrees in journalism and political science in 1977 from San Francisco State University. He graduated with an M.B.A. from the University of California, Davis in 1994. He is a former newspaper reporter.

Announcements

More than 100 anti-transgender rights bills were introduced in state legislatures this year. Many focus on children and teens. Join us for our next Health Matters webinar, where we'll explore the health and well-being of transgender youth as states such as Arkansas and Tennessee seek to limit their rights. Our expert panel will share the latest research, seed story ideas and offer reporting advice. Sign-up here!

Are you passionate about helping journalists understand and illuminate the social factors that contribute to health and health disparities at a time when COVID-19 has highlighted the costs of such inequities? Looking to play a big role in shaping journalism today in the United States?  Apply now for one of our positions. 

The best journalism these days wraps compelling narratives around scrupulous data analysis. Apply now for our 2021 Data Fellowship to learn the skills necessary to use big data to inform your reporting on health and social welfare issues. Learn more in this webinar on Aug. 3.

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