Meet the Tufts COHERE Team

Program Leadership

Kim Dong, DrPH, MS, RDN
Program Director

Kim Dong (she/her) is an Associate Professor in the Department of Public Health and Community Medicine at Tufts University School of Medicine. Before joining Tufts as faculty in 2017, Kim was a research assistant and project manager for over a decade working on several studies related to HIV and nutrition. Kim’s current research focuses on healthcare access and food and nutrition security as determinants of health, particularly with people with HIV and justice-impacted individuals. Her current projects explore food insecurity among adults on probation, evaluating interest in PrEP for HIV prevention among incarcerated adults, assessing unmet nutritional needs among people participating in methadone treatment programs, and evaluating the role of CHWs in the health care workforce. Additional areas of interest include AAPI health equity. Kim holds a DrPH from Tufts University School of Medicine, an MS from Tufts University Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, an RD from Frances Stern Nutrition Center at Tufts Medical Center, and a BS from the University of California, Berkeley.

Fernando Ona, PhD, MPH, MSW, MDiv, LCSW
Associate Director

Fernando Ona (he series) is a Clinical Professor in the Department of Public Health and Community Medicine at Tufts University School of Medicine. He joined the Department in 2014. Fernando’s research focuses on mental health and psychosocial stabilization interventions in contexts of war, conflict, and complex humanitarian emergencies, especially with survivors of torture. Over the course of twenty-five years, Fernando has held public health appointments at local, State, and global health institutions to address health inequities and structural violence in communities that are disproportionately impacted by disease morbidity and mortality. Fernando holds a doctoral degree from the University of California, Berkeley, an MPH from Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, an MSW from Boston University School of Social Work, and an MDiv (magna cum laude) from Boston University School of Theology. He is currently a DMin student as the Whitney M. Young Fellow and the FOR Walter Wink and June Keener Wink Fellow at Boston University School of Theology.  

Pep Vicente, BA
CHW Instructor

Pep Vicente is a Community Health Worker and Team Lead at Massachusetts General Hospital, serving disadvantaged populations. Additionally, he teaches Medical Spanish and in educational programs for the city of Chelsea. He was born in Barcelona, Spain.

Albert Pless, MS
Community Liaison and Instructor

Albert W. Pless, Jr is the Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for the Town of Andover, Massachusetts. He is also an Adjunct Professor at the Tufts School of Medicine Online MPH program and a guest lecturer at the Tufts School of Community Health. Albert has over 25 years of experience working in community-based programs in the Greater Boston area.

Amanda Yuan, BA
Program Administrator

Amanda Yuan (she/her) is a graduate of Tufts University with a BA in Community Health. During her time as a student, through experiences on research projects and community-based programs, she fostered a passion for health justice and accessibility for all. From a young age, Amanda has aspired to the work of community health workers and admired the impactful ways they empower others in communities experiencing continued violence and neglect by the healthcare system. She is honored to be involved in a program aiming to uplift amazing trainees who share a passion for serving their communities.

Student Staff

Tong (Lilly) Zeng, BS
Tufts MPH Candidate

Lilly Zeng (she/her) is an MPH candidate at Tufts School of Medicine, with a concentration in Health Services Management & Policy. She graduated with a dual degree in Nutrition (Dietetics) and Biochemistry & Molecular Biology from UMass Amherst. Her previous experiences as a nutrient analysis assistant, nutrition advisor, and research assistant in the field have endowed her with valuable practical skills and valuable insights into nutrition and wellness sectors. Lilly is passionately navigating the intersection of comprehensive healthcare and scientific research, contributing her knowledge and expertise towards practical advancements in public health and medicine.

Andrew Min
Tufts MD/MPH ’26 Candidate

Andrew Min grew up in sunny San Diego before studying Psychobiology at UCLA. In Los Angeles, Andrew fostered his passion to deliver equitable, compassionate, and accessible healthcare to unhoused communities through the Mobile Clinic Project. Andrew is passionate about street medicine, LGBTQ+ health, and increasing access to affordable healthcare!

Muyang Wu
Tufts MS/MPH Candidate

Muyang Wu (she/her) is an International student from China, graduated from the University of Delaware with a degree in Nutritional Sciences/Dietetics. She is currently enrolled in the MS/MPH program at Tufts University, with an MS concentration in Nutrition Intervention and Community Behavior Change; and an MPH concentration in Epidemiology and Biostatistics. She has studied and worked in quantitative and qualitative analysis, and has skills with SAS, STATA, NVIVO and other analysis software. She is a research assistant for Tufts COHERE assisting with program evaluation.