Christine Blake, PhD, RD
Dr. Christine Blake, PhD, RD (Principle Investigator) is an Associate Professor in the Department of Health Promotion, Education and Behavior at the Arnold School of Public Health. She is an international expert on food choice who has conducted both qualitative and quantitative studies on the drivers of food choice in diverse populations.
Edward Frongillo, PhD
Dr. Edward Frongillo is a Professor in the Department of Health Promotion, Education, and Behavior at the Arnold School of Public Health. Dr. Frongillo is a global expert on household and individual food insecurity of adults and children and on infant and young child feeding, growth, and nutrition. He has extensive experience conducting mixed qualitative and quantitative evaluation and research in many countries in South Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Latin America. He has extensive experience in providing training and technical assistance to researchers in developing countries.
Krystal Rampalli, BS, MPH, PhD
Postdoctoral Research Associate
Dr. Krystal Rampalli is a Postdoctoral Research Associate for the Drivers of Food Choice Program in the Department of Health Promotion, Education and Behavior at the University of South Carolina. Her research interests are in adolescent health and nutrition, particularly amidst changing food environments in low and middle-income countries. Krystal holds a BS in Molecular and Cell Biology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, an MPH in Environmental Health Sciences from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, and a PhD in Health Promotion, Education, and Behavior from the University of South Carolina Arnold School of Public Health.
Shiny Deepika (Dee) Singapogu, MS, MA
Dee is a Ph.D student at the Arnold School of Public Health at the University of South Carolina and a graduate research assistant with the Drivers of Food Choice program. She has an MS in Wellness and Human Performance from University of Pittsburgh. Dee’s primary research interest is researching and promoting the benefits of plant-based nutrition to help alleviate chronic diseases such as heart disease, obesity, diabetes, etc. Her secondary research interests include technology-based health interventions and physical activity promotion. She has experience studying the impact of lifestyle changes on obesity and Polycystic Ovary Syndrome as well as conducting health promotion programs in rural and urban India particularly among populations with chronic disease. Her goal is to create and deliver technology-based interventions to enable people to prevent, treat, and reverse chronic illness through plant-based nutrition and regular physical activity.
Emma Kenney, MPH
Emma is an alumna of the Univeristy of South Carolina Exercise Science department where she obtained her Masters of Public Health and Physical Activity. During her undergraduate, she worked as an Assistant Nutritionist for the UofSC football team, where she assisted with analyzing body composition, hydration testing, and organizing and maintaining the nutrition facility. Currently, she helps to manage the Drivers of Food Choice website, as well as social media.
Shiva Bhandari, MSC
Shiva is a PhD student in the Department of Health Promotion, Education, and Behavior at the Arnold School of Public Health and works as a research assistant in the Drivers of Food Choice Competitive Grants Program. Previously, he worked on several projects in Nepal focused on maternal health, infant and young child feeding, and health and nutrition behavior change. As a PoSHAN Fellow in the Feed the Future Nutrition Innovation Lab in Nepal (led by Johns Hopkins University), he conducted research on the pathways linking agriculture to nutrition and health and assisted in organizing international scientific symposia. The ultimate goals of his research are to promote food security and the accessibility of healthy foods in low and middle-income countries.
Sharraf Samin, MPH
Samin is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Health Promotion, Education and Behavior at the Arnold School of Public Health and works as a Graduate Research Assistant in the Drivers of Food Choice Competitive Grants Program. He has experience in conducting formative research and need assessment of maternal and child health nutrition among the rural and vulnerable populations in Bangladesh. As a Scientific Study Coordinator of the CAPABLE BELIEVE Bauniabadh (Slum) Cohort Study (led by the University of Cambridge and BSMMU), Samin conducted research on assessing the prospective associations of nutritional factors (traditional diet, body fat composition etc.) and environmental factors with the future risk of chronic diseases among the socioeconomically disadvantaged and marginalized slum dwellers in Bangladesh. His research interests are carrying out investigations on food safety and security, food-based solutions for enhanced health and chronic diseases. His goal is to promote food safety and consumer awareness through comprehensive and effective food safety systems for prevention and reversal of chronic diseases in the low- and middle-income countries. He enjoys traveling, sports and cooking at his leisure.
Sejla is an MPH candidate in the Department of Health Promotion, Education, and Behavior at the Arnold School of Public Health. She works as a graduate research assistant in the Drivers of Food Choice Competitive Grants Program. Sejla has recently traveled to Liberia to lead the training of study staff on data collection methods and program delivery for an integrated intervention aimed at improving child development (led by the University of South Carolina in collaboration with Plan International and Harvard University). She was responsible for monitoring the baseline and end-line data collection and the implementation of the parenting and nutrition program. Sejla’s research interests center around the intersections of food systems, the environment, nutrition, and individual decision-making to develop sustainable efforts and improve child health outcomes.