Global Health Student Advisory Committee

The Global Health Student Advisory Committee is comprised of student representatives from the School of Arts & Sciences, Brown School, Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts, School of Medicine, McKelvey School of Engineering, School of Law, and Olin Business School.

This group works closely with the Global Health Center on university-wide activities and organizes events. The role of the committee is to communicate with the different schools and student groups to help generate awareness and interest in global health among students at Washington University and beyond. The group participates in university-wide events including Global Health Week as well as the annual Global Health and Infectious Disease Conference.

2020-2021 Global Health Student Advisory Committee

Committee Members

Bill Effah, Brown School – Chair
Rama Balasubramaniam, McKelvey School of Engineering – Vice Chair
Ananya Benegal, McKelvey School of Engineering
Blake Sells, School of Medicine
Hailey Spaeth, Arts & Sciences
Kayla Wallace, Arts & Sciences
Nina Crosby Walton, Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts


Rama Balasubramaniam is a senior studying biomedical engineering and anthropology. She is passionate about applying her engineering background to solve global health challenges and promoting campus-wide engagement with global health. At WashU, Rama is involved in the student-run nonprofit GlobeMed, through which she organized a conference on immigrant and refugee healthcare. After graduation, Rama hopes to attend medical school and continue to advocate for health equity.

Ananya Benegal is a third year PhD student in Mechanical Engineering and studies influenza and SARS-CoV-2 from a biophysical perspective. She has had experience with maternal and infant nutrition in Uganda through GlobeMed and with medical equipment in Roosevelt Hospital in Guatemala City through Engineers Without Borders. She hopes to apply her background in infectious diseases to health policy research. She is also interested in technology as a tool to expand access to healthcare.

William (Bill) Effah is an MPH student specializing in Global Health. He is a general practice physician-administrator with experience in patient care and leading healthcare teams in West Africa. He has broad interests in areas such as dissemination and implementation science as it relates to infectious diseases, leveraging technology and health outcomes research. He is currently interning with the City of St. Louis Department of Health, where he was retained after his practicum to help develop a foodborne illness surveillance system incorporating social media and revise the city’s food code.

Blake Sells is a first year MD/PhD student at Washington University School of Medicine. As an undergraduate student at Duke, he worked in Shirati, Tanzania and Kampala, Uganda, with community organizations on projects related to treatment and education about schistosomiasis and assessing how nutritional status impacts pediatric cancer treatment outcomes, respectively. He is particularly interested in how specific metabolic interventions may improve treatment outcomes for patients with cancer.

Hailey Spaeth is a senior in Arts & Sciences double majoring in Economics and Anthropology: Global Health and Environment. She is passionate about improving women’s health equity through reproductive justice and violence prevention work, using data analysis and economics as tools to do so. In her junior year, she utilized her coursework in economics to complete an econometric analysis of the factors influencing abortion rates. She is interested in learning about strategic global health interventions to improve community-based data collection and dissemination for underserved communities.

Kayla Wallace is a junior studying Environmental Biology and Global Health. She is interested in exploring intersections between human, animal, and environmental health in the face of emerging diseases exacerbated by climate change. She has conducted zoonotic disease research and now works in the Queller-Strassman lab studying altruistic behavior in social amoeba. Her involvement in the Living Earth Collaborative and extensive experience in environmental field work have both shaped her systems-based way of thinking and philosophies surrounding our intertwined well-beings. She seeks to use these approaches to challenge and highlight health disparities and create programming that educates, engages, and activates with GHSAC.

Nina Crosby Walton is a junior majoring in Communication Design and minoring in Human-Computer Interaction and Architecture. Her interests lie in STEM centered Human-Computer Interaction, innovative user experience, and problem solving. After taking Interaction Design: Health and Well-being, she developed a niche interest in User Experience Design for Healthcare. She hopes to work on improving the user experience interactions between patients and practitioners in healthcare and also to enhance patient self-advocacy through technology.

Read about 2019-20 Global Health Student Advisory Committee members.
Read about 2018-19 Global Health Student Advisory Committee members.