#WeAreEmoryEPI: Meet Paige Gugerty
Category : #WeAreEmoryEPI
Meet Paige Gugerty! Paige is a second-year Epidemiology MPH candidate interested in the intersection of substance use and infectious disease epidemiology, as well as outbreak investigation and response. To learn more about Paige, her current projects with the CDC, and why she chose Rollins, continue reading below!
Tell us a little bit about your academic history/where you went to school.
I graduated from the University of Delaware with a B.S. in Organizational and Community Leadership and a minor in Public Health. It was there that I first became interested in public health as a research assistant looking at health disparities and the social determinants of health with Dr. Erin Knight.
Are there any exciting projects that you are currently working on that you’d like to share with us?
Earlier this semester, I wrapped up leading a team of contact tracers and case investigators in the Northwest Health District at the Georgia Department of Public Health. I am gearing up to go back to work with my group in the CDC’s Division of HIV Prevention on REAL – we typically work on guidelines related to HIV testing. I am also currently writing my thesis on syringe services programs in Appalachia Kentucky with Dr. Hannah Cooper.
When applying, what were you looking for in a public health school, and what factors drove you towards Rollins?
I had a really hard time choosing between Rollins and another MPH program in the Northeast but I am so happy that I ultimately came to Rollins. I chose Rollins for the traditional MPH program format, rigorous academics, warm and collegial atmosphere, setting in Atlanta, and proximity to CDC.
What is your favorite part about earning your MPH at Emory?
Where do I begin? The people, the culture and collegiality, the courses and projects, and the connections to CDC are the things that stand out most for me.
What is your favorite class you have taken so far at Emory and why?
I’ve really enjoyed Case Studies in Infectious Disease EPI (EPI 517), Introduction to GIS (INFO 530), and am currently taking EPI of Foodborne and Diarrheal Disease (EPI 544) which I also recommend.
What advice do you have for 1st year MPH Students?
I wish I had taken a few more hard skills-based courses my first year, so definitely look into that if you are interested in taking some of the advanced electives in the future.
How have you been spending your free time?
I like to walk on the Beltline and explore nearby parks, as well as workout at the gym when I can. I enjoy listening to podcasts (i.e. The Daily, Emerging Infectious Diseases, Shiny Epi People, This Podcast Will Kill You, MMWR History, etc.) in the background and highly recommend Dopesick on Hulu, which examines the opioid epidemic from many different angles and is based on the book by Beth Macy.
What are three fun facts that you want people to know about you?
- I love spending time with my cat, Winnie, especially when I am studying or working from home.
- I did a lot of backpacking and hiking during high school and college, including treks in the Sierra Nevada, Adirondacks, parts of the Appalachian Trail, and the Kepler Track in New Zealand.
- I started the MPH program in 2019, took a gap year last year to work at DPH, and now that I am back, am still trying to meet folks as most of my friends from RSPH have either graduated or are 1st year PhD students.
Thanks for talking with us, Paige! Tune in next Monday for another feature of #WeAreEmoryEPI.