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Meet the 2016 Futures Fellows

As the 2016 Futures Fellowship Training Institute nears, HSP would like to formally introduce this year’s Fellows. Coming from both the U.S. and Pakistan, the Futures Fellows will gather next week in Amsterdam to learn from experts in the field and collaborate on innovative ways to address health security challenges. From their varying backgrounds to diverse research interests, this year’s Fellows have the potential to make substantial impacts on the future of health security worldwide. Stay tuned for updates on the Institute and more from these impressive Fellows in the weeks to come!

Pakistani Fellows


Rikza Ahmed

Rikza attends The Women University Multan where she studies microbiology and molecular genetics. Her research interests lie within virology and the body’s natural defense against infectious diseases, and she hopes her future research will shed light on what can be done to increase immunity against viral and bacterial infections. She is eager for the collaboration that the Futures Fellowship creates for addressing public health issues, and she is confident that HSP will provide an ideal platform to achieve her future goals.

Junaid Akhtar

Junaid is a PhD scholar in Microbiology at the University of Health Sciences Lahore with particular interest in researching topics related to infectious disease, antibiotic resistance, and the molecular basis of drug resistance. When asked about what he hopes to attain from this fellowship, Junaid explained, “I hope I will learn about health security issues from this fellowship and disseminate information to my friends, my colleagues, and the public. I hope that after this fellowship, my understandings of health safety and security will be improved.”

Saleha Hafeez

With a desire to do research in tissue rejection and gene therapy, Saleha is amidst study at The Women University Multan for a B.S. in Microbiology and Molecular Genetics. For Saleha, “this Fellowship program will provide me a forum to interact with people from other countries and thus it will broaden my vision.”

Sadaf Ilyas

As a Research Officer at the School of Biological Sciences within the University of Punjab in Lahore, Pakistan, Sadaf is currently working on a project called “Development and Commercialization of Blood-Based Tuberculosis Diagnostic Tests”. Her main areas of interest include molecular biology, immunology, public health, and infectious microbiology. Sadaf is eager to interact with experts from multiple disciplines through the Fellowship experience and hopes this platform will help groom her technical and administrative skills to enhance her career as a professional scientist and health researcher.

Muhammad Junaid

Muhammad is currently in his 8th semester of study for a BS in Biotechnology from Bacha Khan University Charsadda Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. His research interests span several fields of biology including biotechnology, molecular biology, virology, and genetics. In the future, Muhammad hopes to be involved in research on gene regulation and the involvement of genes in human disease development as he believes human genetics could be one of the most important future scientific accomplishments. Muhammad’s ultimate goal from the Futures Fellowship is to utilize his acquired knowledge and training to solve problems faced by Pakistani society.

Tahir Hussain Kakakhel

Tahir attends the National University of Sciences and Technology in Islamabad, Pakistan as a Microbiology PhD student with particular research interest in molecular epidemiology and bacterial genomics. In regards to his hopes for the Futures Fellowship, Tahir has expressed, “I am very confident that the Health Security Futures Fellowship will not only help me learn new insights and skills, but will also help to contribute more efficiently in creating awareness and making strategies for containing the emerging biological threats in the academic and healthcare institutions, and in society at large.”

Ramsha Khan

Ramsha is currently completing her M. Phil in pursuit of a PhD in Molecular Pathology at Dow University of Health Sciences. She works as a medical technologist within the molecular lab and is also involved in different fields of study including cancer and microbiology. Aside from her eagerness to meet the other fellows and discuss research, Ramsha is most looking forward to adding knowledge and experience to her career through the Fellowship program, which she plans to then share with and use as motivation for juniors in her M.Phil Fellowship program in Pakistan.

Abid Hussain Qureshi

Abid is a PhD student in Microbiology and Molecular Genetics at the University of the Pubjab in Lahore, Pakistan, with research interests in the fields of public health, epidemiology, bioethics, infectious diseases and allergy. His main focus during the Fellowship is to learn from peers and collaborate to address local health security challenges.

Madiha Rafique

Madiha is currently pursuing a M.Phil in Microbiology from the University of Health Sciences in Lahore. In the future, she hopes to do research on combatting emerging infectious diseases but is also intrigued by potential research in the fields of forensic science and clinical pathology. Madiha is eager to meet with other Fellows and explore different ways to address the challenges for improving health statuses within societies. She also hopes that, through the Futures Fellowship, she can collaborate with colleagues from both her home country and overseas to shed light on health-related challenges.

Faizan Rasheed

Faizan attends Quiad-i-Azam University in pursuit of a M.Phil in Medical Microbiology. His research interests lie within vaccine development and antibiotic resistance as challenges to global health security. Throughout this Fellowship, Faizan hopes to achieve a better understanding of the vast array of global health security challenges, enhance his teamwork skills through collaboration with other Futures Fellows, and improve his confidence in carrying out a significant project.

Muhammad Arif Shah

Arif is a student at the Institute of Basic Medical Sciences within Khyber Medical University Peshawar, Pakistan. His main research interests include antimicrobial resistance, nanoparticles with antimicrobial activity, innate immunity, and toll-like receptors (TLRs). For Arif, this fellowship will “be a stage for me where I can serve humanity in a real manner, strengthen my skills, develop my research capabilities, polish my collaborative role, and encourage cultural exchange”.

Sobia Naz Shaukat

Sobia is currently in pursuit of a Ph.D in Microbiology through Karachi University. The areas she is most interested to study are immunological consequences, particularly type 1 and type 2 immune responses in human hosts, and infection with HIV-1 virus in patients with existing TB infection or vice versa. Regarding her hopes for the Futures Fellowship, Sobia explains, “after completion of the prospective fellowship program, I hope to be better skilled in promoting awareness sessions in health care facilities or educational institutions against HIV and TB infections.”

Bilal Ahmed Khan

Bilal is pursuing a M.Phil in Biotechnology from Quaid-i-Azam University in Islamabad, and his research interests include emerging infectious diseases, synthetic biology, and dual-use research. Bilal hopes that, through the Futures Fellowship, he will “learn about global health security principles, practices, and challenges” as well as have the opportunity to work with experts in the field to find solutions for health security issues.

Syed Ali Abbas

Syed is a graduate of the University of Peshawar where he studied biotechnology. With main research interests in molecular biology, immunology, and synthetic biology, Syed plans to use the 2016 Futures Fellowship as an opportunity to better understand the interconnectivity of science, technology, and foreign policy. He also hopes the Fellowship will “help to bring cultural harmony, religious tolerance and patience that is very much needed in current situation of the world. Secondly, it will help me understand and adapt to the fast growing trend of globalization as people from different cultures and parts of world work together.”

Saadia Ijaz

U.S. Fellows

John Campbell, Jr.

John is pursuing a master’s degree in Biomedical Science Policy and Advocacy at Georgetown University in D.C. With research interests including domestic and international health care politics, HIV/AIDS policy, social determinants of health, and the politics of health inequalities, in his future career John aspires to integrate these research experiences with his organizational leadership skills and public health community work to help individuals and populations achieve better health. John hopes that the Futures Fellowship “would ideally prepare me to reach this goal, through unparalleled opportunities to utilize the resources, tools, and collaboration with like-minded international peers in the development of actions necessary for sustainably addressing a specific global health security challenge.”

Kate Consavage

Kate is a graduate student at Georgetown University in Washington D.C. pursuing a M.S. in Global Health. She is particularly interested in obesity as a risk factor for non-communicable diseases (NCDs) and the growing threat of NCDs to health security worldwide. She is also fascinated by the topics of agroterrorism and emerging infectious diseases, particularly their pandemic potential. During her time as a Futures Fellow, Kate is “eager to collaborate with peers abroad on innovative ways to combat the rising threats to health security on both a national and international level as well as develop lasting partnerships with my international counterparts.”

Hannah Cummins

Hannah attends Georgetown University where she is attaining a M.S. in Global Health. Her primary area of interest within health security is the role of biorisk management in infectious disease control and prevention. Through the Futures Fellowship, Hannah hopes “to gain the necessary knowledge and skills to combat health security concerns both at home and abroad. Additionally, I fervently look forward to collaborating with the Futures Fellows, learning more about their interests and backgrounds, in hopes that we can work together throughout our careers to combat health security issues.”

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3 Comments on Meet the 2016 Futures Fellows

  1. Sana Shabbir Malik

    April 5, 2016 at 12:10 am | Reply

    hello HSP team! i am sana one of the member of the HSP 2015 . i have meet my new team in a meeting they all very excited and passionate towards HSP goal for health issue . i hope they all along with US partner will do great job .there is one question i wanna say to HSP that is, Can i also able to know about their project of this year? i just wanna see how they all did and performed.


    April 14, 2016 at 3:41 pm | Reply

    Good introduction

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