Rollins Professor: Allison Chamberlain

Rollins Professor: Allison Chamberlain

Category : #WeAreEmoryEPI

For this week’s #IamEmoryEPI, we caught up with Dr. Allison Chamberlain!

Tell us where you went to school:

I am a proud Virginia Wahoo (GO HOOS!). After my time in Charlottesville, I got a Masters of Science degree from Georgetown University and my PhD in Epi from RSPH.

What are your primary research interests?

I am interested in infectious disease epidemiology, public health practice, and vaccine promotion. I do a lot of work with clinicians interested in improving their promotion of preventive health interventions (e.g. vaccines, PrEP for HIV) to their patients. Right now, I am working to characterize PrEP (for HIV) promotion practices among primary care providers in Atlanta. I want to explore whether a particular model from vaccine promotion can be tweaked for and applied to PrEP promotion.

What did you do this past summer?

This past summer, I worked with two recent Emory Epi PhD grads on data analysis for a PBS Frontline documentary exploring the breadth and impact of the Legionnaires’ disease outbreak that occurred around the time of the Flint water crisis. It was an interesting opportunity to put our Epi skills and knowledge towards a lay media production. The documentary aired on September 10 and can be found here:

https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/film/flints-deadly-water/

How did you find the research that you are currently conducting?

Much of my current research is done in collaboration with the Fulton County Board of Health (FCBOH) in downtown Atlanta. I work as a consultant to FCBOH two days per week. More on that can be found here:

https://jphmpdirect.com/2019/01/29/my-life-as-a-pracademic/

Are there any exciting manuscripts or projects that you are currently working on?

Yep! Having just finished FCBOH’s second sexual health & PrEP-focused survey at the 2019 Atlanta Pride festivals, I am drafting up descriptions of my analysis needs…will be looking for some more student help soon!

What is your favorite part about being at Emory?

The ambition of the students. It’s infectious and energizing.

Do you have any advice for MPH students?

While you’re at Rollins, accept any opportunities you can that involve either primary data collection or survey design & implementation. Those skills will serve you enormously in the working world!

What current books are you reading and/or podcasts that you are currently listening to?

Pivot by Jenny Blake is my absolute favorite Podcast. Her book (also called Pivot) is so great for anyone trying to figure out their next career move. The book Range by David Epstein is also a great read – particularly for those of us (ahem, me) looking to justify having interests in a lot of topics!

What are three fun facts about yourself?

  1. I love working in between academia and local public health practice. I want more students and faculty to work at this intersection.
  2. I am looking forward to leading EPI 535: Designing and Implementing Epi Studies for the first time this Spring!
  3. I never order anything but plain chocolate ice cream when I go get ice cream. Drives my topping-loving kids insane.


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