David  O'Gara

David O'Gara

Public Health & Social Work

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Program track:
Public Health & Social Work

I am a first-year PhD student, originally from Glenview, Illinois. I completed my Bachelor’s and Master’s in Systems Science & Engineering here at WashU in 2018. In between, I worked as a economic and health care consultant in Denver and Chicago.

What are your research interests and current projects and papers?
I am interested in the intersection of complex systems and public health. For my first rotation, I am working with Professor Ross Hammond. Currently, I am working on two projects: (1) modeling policy responses for COVID-19, and (2) the impact of sugar-sweetened beverages on early childhood obesity outcomes.
Why did you decide to pursue your PhD at WashU?
There is a growing movement towards applying systems thinking and principles to public health solutions, and WashU is a leader in this area, so I could not imagine a better place to continue my development as a researcher.