One thing Ali Hoover ’13 has learned in her work as program manager for World Vasectomy Day is that words matter. In the African countries where Swahili is spoken, for example, the word for “vasectomy” is the same as the word for “castration”—and that makes the procedure a tough sell for many men.

Hoover, an international political economy major at Puget Sound, has been working with reproductive health programs around the globe for more than six years. Last year, the Gates Institute named her one of “120 Under 40: The New Generation of Family Planning Leaders.”