PhD in Epidemiology and Clinical Research-Students Bios

2016 Cohort

Nathan Lo graduated with a BS in Bioengineering and minor in global health technologies from Rice University, and is an MD/PhD student in the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) at Stanford University. His research applies mathematical modeling, epidemiology, and health economics towards topics in infectious diseases and global health, with an interest in neglected tropical diseases. Nathan hopes to combine these interests as a physician-scientist with a focus on global health policy. His work has resulted in multiple peer-reviewed publications, and has been featured in the New York Times, BBC, NPR, The Guardian, and other outlets. He has worked in policy at the Baker Institute for Public Policy and World Health Organization, and conducted international health work in Côte d'Ivoire, Ecuador, Honduras, and Liberia. Nathan enjoys running, tennis, and caffeine.

Stylianos (Stelios) Serghiou joined the PhD program in Epidemiology and Clinical Research in 2016. After spending two years as a second lieutenant for the National Guard of Cyprus, he attended the University of Edinburgh, where he obtained a BSc with Honors in Neuroscience in 2012 and received his medical degree (MBChB) with Honors in 2015. He was then awarded a post and worked for a year as an Academic Foundation Doctor for NHS Lothian and as an Honorary Clinical Fellow of the University of Edinburgh. Over his time in Edinburgh, he obtained multiple awards, including scholarships by the Royal College of Physicians of UK and Ireland, Royal College of Ophthalmologists and being an AMGEN scholar. He is moving to Stanford to work on his interests in improving the quality of medical research and exploring the application of novel computational techniques to analyzing big data in medicine.  Alongside medicine, he is especially interested in music and had served with his violin as the leader of the National Youth Orchestra of Cyprus and a first violin of the University of Edinburgh Symphony Orchestra.

Christophe Toukam Tchakoute joined the epidemiology PhD program in 2016. He received his undergraduate degree in chemistry and molecular cell biology at the University of Cape Town (South Africa). After working in an immunology lab in Cape Town and Seattle for two years where he did research on vaccines strategies for HIV-exposed neonates, He did an internship in the HIV /AIDS department at the World Health Organization (WHO) headquarters in Switzerland. Before coming to Stanford, Christophe completed his MpH in infectious disease epidemiology at Columbia University in New York City, in May 2016. His research interests include HIV/Tuberculosis prevention and clinical trials. He is also particularly eager to learn how to use novel statistical methods in the context of clinical research. Christophe enjoys going to live music festivals, playing Jambo drums and doing outdoor physical activities.

2015 Cohort

Katherine Holsteen graduated with a BS in Mathematical & Computational Science from Stanford University in 2014. As an undergraduate, she worked on research to evaluate and promote statistical model robustness in sociological studies. As a new PhD student in Epidemiology and Clinical Research, she is interested in helping to advance causal inference methods, particularly in application to athletic injury prevention research. Katherine enjoys spending time with her husband Aaron, a PhD student in Materials Science, and particularly running, biking, and cooking together.

Tanya Podchiyska graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Human Biology and Religious Studies from Stanford University and is completing a Master’s at the Stanford Biomedical Informatics training program. She has worked as a knowledge and data integration engineer and clinical data warehouse curator. As a new PhD student in Epidemiology and Clinical Research, she is interested in building risk prediction models using EHR data and contextualizing them through meta-research to promote generalizable and reproducible clinical research findings. To increase her clinical domain knowledge and engineer useful features, Tanya is also pursuing a Master of Medicine. She is eager to explore the interdisciplinary nature of epidemiology and clinical research informatics.

Kathleen (Katie) Watson, MS received a BA in psychology and a minor in Middle Eastern Studies at New York University.  From 2007 to 2012 she served as Chief Operating Officer and Senior Vice President of Microclinic International (MCI), during which time the organization established public health programs in Jordan, India, Kenya, and the United States. Katie currently serves MCI as Vice-Chairman of the Board of Directors and as a research investigator.  In 2015, she received an MS in Epidemiology at Columbia University while managing research operations at the Stanford Center for Neuroscience and Women’s Health (SCWNH). Katie is currently a PhD candidate in Epidemiology and Clinical Research. Her research interests include global health, chronic disease management and epidemiologic methods including longitudinal data analysis, and network analysis/complex systems.