Allison Ciesla joined the Epidemiology PhD program in 2014. She received a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and Biology degree from St. Lawrence University, and a Master of Science in Epidemiology degree from Case Western Reserve University. Allison has an interest in take home exposures: what are we doing in the workplace that affects the health of our families? Allison is currently conducting field research and collecting data for her thesis titled: “Occupational Contributions to Pesticide Exposure.” She is also working as a research coordinator/assistant with the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology for the UPSIDE study.
Ashley Holub joined the Epidemiology PhD program in 2015. She received a Bachelor of Science in Psychology degree from the University of Buffalo, where she worked as a research assistant for the Depression Research Treatment Team. She received a Master in Arts of Psychology from Medaille College. She has previously worked as a clinical research coordinator in clinical trials. Ashley is a human subjects research coordinator for the Seychelles Child Development Study and also conducts research within the Department of Emergency Medicine at the University of Rochester Medical Center. Her research interests are centered around pediatrics and psychiatric epidemiology. Her thesis is examining the health effects of stress in caregivers of children with autism spectrum disorder.
Marielle Jensen-Battaglia joined the Epidemiology PhD program in 2019. Her educational background includes a Bachelors degree in Biology and minor in Psychology from Roberts Wesleyan College and a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from the University of Massachusetts at Lowell. She is a licensed physical therapist, certified Geriatric Clinical Specialist and American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) Credentialed Clinical Instructor with experience in outpatient, skilled nursing, homecare, and day center settings. Her research interests include healthy aging, health inequities in geriatric populations, and determinants of physical mobility through the end of life.
Amber Kautz joined the Epidemiology PhD program in 2019. Amber earned her Bachelor of Science in Nutrition from Cornell University in 2015, and subsequently completed her Master of Science in Nutrition, as well as her Dietetic Internship, at Boston University in 2017. Prior to joining the program, she worked as a Registered Dietitian for 2 years in the inpatient setting. Broadly, her research interests are centered on nutritional epidemiology, including factors that impact weight status and chronic disease outcomes.
Julie Kittel joined the Epidemiology PhD program in 2017. She received her Bachelors of Science in Psychology with a minor in Music from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2010, and subsequently completed her Master in Experimental Psychology degree at the College of William and Mary in 2012. She also worked at the Department of Veterans Affairs VISN 17 Center of Excellence for Research on Returning War Veterans in Waco, TX, where she studied post-deployment mental health in recent veterans. Her research interests are suicide prevention and health-related risk factors for suicide, such as obesity and binge drinking. She is also interested in the relationship between stigma, prejudice, and suicidal behavior.
Rui Li joined the Epidemiology PhD program at URMC in 2016. She received her Bachelors degree in Preventive Medicine from Shanghai Jiao Tong University in China. Her broad interests include chronic pain epidemiology and women’s health. Her major research area is the life course development and biopsychosocial determinants of chronic pain in women.
Linxi Liu joined the Epidemiology PhD program in 2016 after completing her undergraduate degree at Sichuan University in Chengdu, China, and her Master of Science degree in Epidemiology at the University of Pittsburgh. Her PhD thesis will focus on allergy history and immuno-therapy targeted protein expression on tumor and immune cells among cancer patients.
Daniel A. Lopez joined the Epidemiology PhD program in 2018. He received his Bachelors degree in History from the University of California-Los Angeles. He also has an Master of Arts in Latin American Studies from Stanford University and a Master of Public Health from the City University of New York (CUNY) School of Public Health. Prior to joining the Epidemiology PhD program, he worked with the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos for 8 years. He is currently conducting research with the Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development (ABCD) cohort study, analyzing predictors of cognitive performance and decline in participants. For his thesis, Daniel plans to focus on population neuroscience and risk factors related to cognitive decline.
Philip Meacham joined the Epidemiology PhD program in 2013. Phil earned a dual Bachelors of Science in Statistics and Applied Mathematics, summa cum laude, from the Rochester Institute of Technology in 2011. He then earned a Masters of Science in Biostatistics at Georgetown University in 2013. During this time, he worked at the National Institutes of Health as a research analyst with the National Institute of Child Health and Development. Phil now works in the clinical trials office at the Wilmot Cancer Institute. His focus is in cancer epidemiology, and he is particularly interested in prevention of second cancers, risk prediction modeling, and applying novel statistical methodology in clinical research. His thesis is examining predictors of subsequent lymphoid malignancies, and evaluating the population that develops these, in order to better understand cancer etiology in the hematologic setting.
Mostafa Mohamed joined the Epidemiology PhD program in 2019. Mostafa earned his medical degree (MBBCh) from Alexandria University in Egypt then he completed four years of clinical training in Medical Oncology at Alexandria University Hospitals. Prior to entering the department, Mostafa worked as a research fellow with the Geriatric Oncology Research Group at the University of Rochester for 2 years. His research interests focus on geriatric oncology and clinical cancer research. Specifically, he is interested in examining potential toxicity of cancer treatments, polypharmacy, and physician decision making during cancer diagnosis and treatment.
Savanah Russ joined the Epidemiology PhD program in 2019. Savanah earned a Bachelor of Arts in Biology from the State University of New York at Geneseo in 2016, as well as a Master in Public Health degree from the Yale School of Public Health in 2019 with concentrations in Epidemiology of Microbial Disease and Public Health Modeling. During this time, she worked as a surveillance officer and research assistant for the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) IMPACT project at the Connecticut Emerging Infections Program studying missed opportunities for HPV vaccination among women with precursors to cervical cancer. Her main research interests surround effectiveness and barriers to uptake of the HPV vaccine in various populations.
Nicole Mayo joined the Epidemiology PhD program in 2017. She graduated from California State University, Northridge with an Interdisciplinary Masters degree in Public Health and Kinesiology (with emphases in epidemiology and exercise physiology), and an undergraduate degree in Kinesiology. Her thesis work involved the development and implementation of a free community-based weight loss program targeting underserved communities of Southern California. Her current research interests include the effect of physical activity and diet as protective measures against neurodegenerative diseases, as well as investigating novel modifiable risk factors related to cardiovascular disease.
Meng Wang joined the Epidemiology PhD grogram in 2014. She received her Bachelor of Preventive Medicine and Master of Science in Epidemiology from Peking University in Beijing, China. Prior to entering the department, she worked as a research assistant in the George Institute for Global Health (China Office) and Peking University Clinical Research Institute. Her research interests include cardiovascular and clinical epidemiology. Currently she is a research assistant in the Clinical Cardiovascular Research Center at the University of Rochester Medical Center. Her PhD thesis is "The Influence of Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillators on Cardiac and Mental Health in Patients with Long QT Syndrome.