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Summer 2017 Fellows standing or seated in wheelchairs, smiling and posing for the camera

Karolyne Kim, Public Policy Apprentice

National Leadership Program, Spring 2020

Karolyn Kim smiling in front of the RespectAbility banner

Karolyne Kim

Karolyne Kim was a Public Policy Apprentice in RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program for Spring 2020. RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of the community.

Kim was born and raised in Virginia. She received her B.A. in Public Health and minored in Visual Arts at The Johns Hopkins University.

Her interest in public policy started at the Johns Hopkins Center for Injury Prevention where she assisted the principal investigator by gathering research on current driving policies for teen driving across the United States, conducting experiments and analyzing the data to find any interesting statistical patterns. Her passion for public policy developed further at the Institute for Global Tobacco Control. Health policy efforts against Big Tobacco always have interested her, and she used this opportunity to research how South Korean tobacco companies changed their marketing methods to best combat government policies designed to decrease tobacco use. In South Korea, she optimized the data collection process by using socioeconomic data, research on where people are most likely to buy their cigarettes, and logistics data such as where tobacco companies are likely to advertise new packaging.

During her senior year at Johns Hopkins, Kim took a full year of masters’ courses focusing especially on policy research at the Bloomberg School of Public Health and realized that she wanted to help create public health programs that educate and influence equal opportunity for people with disabilities. At RespectAbility, she will further her education about public policy and people with disabilities.

Kim has lived abroad during her middle school and high school years in South Korea and in Vietnam. Consequently, she loves to travel and has traveled to more than 25 different countries. Once a member of the Ho Chi Minh City Ballet Symphony Orchestra and Opera as a violist, she now enjoys playing viola occasionally at home. During her time at Johns Hopkins University, she enjoyed debating as a member of the Johns Hopkins Undergraduate Debate Council and ice skating with the Hopkins Figure Skating Club. She is honored to have won first place with her public health scholar bowl team in the 2018 National Public Health Quiz Bowl competition. In her free time, Kim enjoys curling up with her cat and reading a good book.


RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities for and with people with disabilities. Learn more about the National Leadership Program and apply for the next cohort! Contact [email protected] for more information.



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Karolyne Kim
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