While Julian Fuentes-Loza ’24 MBA was self-isolating at home in Mexico City in 2020, he noticed a disturbing amount of disinformation spreading online related to the COVID-19 pandemic and vaccine.
Fuentes-Loza’s background as a healthcare consultant helped him to filter the misinformation in the media and distill the most relevant scientific facts. Still, he knew many in his community and online were unsure of what to believe.
So he created Vaccupedia, a project to amplify fact-based information about scientific developments from reputable news outlets and medical journals. Vaccupedia reached more than 10,000 quarterly views across social media channels when it was operating.
“Our goal was to focus on credible information from reliable sources, but written in a way that anyone can understand,” Fuentes-Loza says. “By directly countering misinformation on different social media platforms, we were able to gain the trust of our followers and share vital medical updates regarding COVID-19.”
Fuentes-Loza first became passionate about healthcare as a result of illnesses in his family and the problems with healthcare infrastructure he witnessed back home.
“In Mexico, the public medical system can be daunting and inefficient,” Fuentes-Loza says. “But the private sector is so cost-prohibitive that it does little to help the vast majority of Mexico’s population.”
Now studying at Yale School of Management as a Martin Werner Fellow, Fuentes-Loza hopes to one day work to bring more equity and efficiency to Mexico’s healthcare system and improve access to healthcare around the world, a goal he feels is supported by Yale SOM’s curriculum and ethos.
“What drew me to Yale SOM was its mission to improve both business and society, which is unique for a business school,” Fuentes-Loza says. “The people Yale SOM attracts are actively working to improve the world either through their businesses or outside of them. Our curriculum tries to consider the perspective all of the stakeholders of a business, not just shareholders. We are asked to think about how our work and our decisions will impact the government, the planet, and our own workforces, among other stakeholders. I believe it is a more holistic and fair-minded ethos for our times.”