Kelly Wahl – NoroCORE Food Virology

Kelly Wahl

Kelly Wahl
M.P.H., Epidemiology
Emory University
Advisors: Drs. Christine Moe and Amy Kirby

Kelly graduated in May 2014, and her project at Emory focused on the course of norovirus and rotavirus infections in children with underlying gastrointestinal dysfunctions, such as congenital malformations, Crohn’s disease, and ulcerative colitis. This is a vulnerable population that may have longer or more severe illness once infected with norovirus, but they have not been studied in detail before.

Kelly’s research experience improved her problem solving, scientific writing, editing, and presentation skills. As for being part of the NoroCORE Collaborative, she said the conference in Atlanta was a great way to meet all of the researchers and access the network of experts in the field. Receiving NoroCORE support allowed Kelly to not only work with a great group of collaborators, but also let her focus on her project and not on sourcing support.

Kelly is a senior consultant with the Precision Health Team at Booz Allen Hamilton where she has built analytics tools for post-marketing surveillance of pharmaceuticals at the FDA. In addition, she is working on a capability-building project related to the surveillance of foodborne bacterial pathogens along the farm-to-fork continuum. When we asked her if she had additional comments about her experience, Kelly shared:

“I can’t thank my advisors enough, especially Dr. Kirby and Dr. Moe. It was such a pleasure working with them and getting to learn from them, and a big thanks to all the collaborators I got to work with on my project. I can’t say enough good things about Amy. I loved working with her while I was at Emory and she has been a phenomenal mentor. I didn’t plan on continuing research in a lab after college but [after] working with Amy and Dr. Moe, and learning more about the fascinating epidemiology and biology of norovirus, I was hooked.”