Dr. Catie Welsh, associate professor of computer science at Rhodes College, is joining a distinguished roster of Fulbright U.S. Scholars this semester. She will be a visiting professor at the University of Innsbruck in Austria, teaching a course for the Digital Science Center and conducting research for her project titled “Bioinformatics With A Focus On Mitochondrial DNA Analysis.”
The Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program—a prestigious educational exchange program—selects American scholars, artists, faculty, and professionals for their substantial experience and leadership to lecture and/or conduct research abroad for up to a year. The Institute of International Education administers the program in collaboration with the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.
“I’m really excited about this opportunity to collaborate with experts in Austria on mitochondrial analysis as well as learn about the data science program at the University of Innsbruck,” says Welsh. “I look forward to bringing what I learn in Austria back to the classroom at Rhodes. I’m incredibly grateful to the Fulbright program for selecting me and to Rhodes College for granting my sabbatical that allows me to participate in this wonderful program.”
Welsh worked as a software engineer before receiving a master’s degree and Ph.D. in computer science. At Rhodes, she has conducted research involving applying computer science algorithms to biological data sets, and her most recent work attempts to understand the functional significance of mitochondrial variants within human populations. She is also a visiting researcher in the computational biology department of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
Welsh is scheduled to be at University of Innsbruck beginning March 1. Her husband and 4-year-old son will accompany her to Austria.