Ben is currently a medical student at the University of Chicago’s Pritzker School of Medicine. He served nine years in the U.S. Army as a Chinese and French linguist. He then spent three years as a U.S. State Department Foreign Service Officer in Mali and China. He graduated with an A.A. in Mandarin Chinese from the Defense Language Institute in 2002, magna cum laude with a B.A. in International Relations from Hawaii Pacific University in 2006, and a pre-medical certificate from Goucher College in 2016. He worked for two years with President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) across Mali to expand HIV testing and treatment on military bases, and he worked with the Chinese Aibai NGO in Sichuan to destigmatize HIV infection in Southwest China and advocate for progressive government policy regarding HIV/AIDS. With Dr John Schneider and in partnership with several Greek physicians and NGOs, Ben’s is working on a research project that explores the network characteristics of Athenian MSM especially in regards to assortativity of risk-behaviors. He is originally from Colorado and lives in Chicago with his partner who works at the Israeli consulate and their dog, Osiris. Ben is interested in a career as an Infectious Disease physician and global health.
Yen-Tyng Chen is a postdoctoral scholar and a trained behavioral scientist. She completed her PhD in Behavioral Sciences and Health Education at Emory University in 2016. She was an ORISE postdoctoral fellow at Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention before she joins CCHE. Her research interests and areas of expertise include HIV risk and prevention, substance use, and place-based multilevel research. Yen-Tyng’s doctoral dissertation examined the relationship between place-based characteristics and underage drinking in Taiwan using a mixed methods approach. Currently, She manages a project that examines how neighborhoods and network determinants influence PrEP adherence among young Black MSM in Chicago as well as participating in analyses on other cohort projects at CCHE.
Jared is an undergraduate student at the University of Chicago studying Biology and Chinese. He is interested in working in public health and is excited to be involved in a few different projects at CCHE, including "StepUp TestUp" and "Your Voice! Your Health!".
Sarah is a student office assistant for CCHE. She is currently an undergraduate at the University of Chicago where she is completing her thesis research on power relationships, stigmatization of female sexuality, and gatekeeping roles in drug dissemination. She is affiliated with the Africa Health Research Institute and the University College London where she studies ways to improve PrEP dissemination to women of color. Sarah is thrilled to work for CCHE given its focus on integrating community partnerships and engagement with research.
Shirish is a Pritzker School of Medicine student interested in global health. He is currently working on a project examining how skin color is related to network positions among a group of Indian men who have sex with men in South India.
After earning her MPH in epidemiology at UIC and working with the Women's Interagency HIV Study in Chicago, Maria Pyra went to the University of Washington and completed her PhD in Epidemiology. Dr. Pyra's work focused on PrEP use among women in Africa and she is excited to translate that work into improving PrEP adherence and retention among at-risk populations in Chicago. Her partner and I just moved to Oak Park with our 2-year-old daughter and 13 yr old dog. Outside of work, she enjoys yoga, swimming, and reading.
Arthi is a postdoctoral scholar working with CCHE and the Center for Data Science and Public Policy. Arthi completed her PhD in Computer Science from Columbia University. She is interested in using data science and statistical techniques to better inform health policy and decisions. Her doctoral dissertation work focused on the consequences of diffusion of information on social media.
Currently, she is working on several projects including developing predictive analytics to retention in care and using social network modeling techniques to examine the diffusion of health information information.
Santhoshini is an undergraduate at the University of Chicago who is studying biology and is interested in public health and community based research. Santhoshini had been working as the HIV FOCUS project intern conducting post-test counseling with HIV negative patients, and is currently transitioning to helping out with a few different projects at CCHE including the PrEP Chicago project.
Kellie is a medical student at the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine. She is currently working on a project assessing the impact of social network attitudes and experiences of stigma on PrEP awareness and use in men who have sex with men. Her previous experience includes HIV-related research and program implementation work for the US Office of Rural Health Policy, as well as instrument development and semi-structured interviews to investigate the sexual and reproductive health needs of young HIV+ women in South Africa. She is particularly interested in prevention science focusing on HIV in an international context, as well as the clinical practice of HIV care. Kellie holds a Bachelor’s degree in Human Biology from Stanford University.
Tim is a medical student at Florida State University College of Medicine. As an undergraduate at University of Chicago, Tim first met Dr. Schneider in 2009. During this time, Tim began work as a volunteer on a pilot study that explored patterns of HIV prevention service utilization and went on to write his senior honor’s thesis on this project with Dr. Schneider as his mentor. After graduating from the University of Chicago in 2011, Tim taught 9th grade Biology at Johnson College Prep on Chicago’s south side for two years with Teach For America. Tim then returned to CCHE where he worked on a variety of projects including Project nGage, the Transmission Reduction Intervention Project, and PrEP Chicago. As a medical student, funding from the HIVMA Medical Student Program enable Tim to explore goal-setting in PrEP Chicago. Tim is thrilled to continue to be a part of the team at the Chicago Center for HIV Elimination.
Dr. Lindsay Young is a NIH Career Transition Award (K99) Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Chicago Department of Medicine and Chicago Center for HIV Elimination (CCHE). Lindsay is a communication scholar and network methodologist by training. Her current work applies these perspectives to understand the social contexts that expose young sexual and racial minorities to HIV-related risks and protections. She is particularly interested in how HIV-related norms emerge in offline and online networking environments, and how those processes might be leveraged for behavioral interventions.