Melissa is a PhD Candidate at Emory University in Atlanta, GA. Her area of study includes includes history of medicine, genetics, race, health policy, and culture. More specifically, she is interested in the social, cultural, ethical, and historic tensions in sickle cell disease and their collective impact on governmental intervention for the disease in Brazil. Formerly, she was a health scientist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention where she worked for nine years. Her work included domestic and international program development for sickle cell disease in the Division of Blood Disorders. She received her Masters in Public Health in Behavioral Science and Health Education and her undergraduate degree in Biology at Emory University as well. She has published work on sickle cell disease in public health, clinical, and medical humanities journals.
Currently, Melissa is a 2013-2014 Boren Fellow and is residing in Brazil for a year of fieldwork.