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Biocultural Anthropology Lab Members

Postdoctoral Research Associate

Dr. Elizabeth Holdsworth is a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Meehan lab. Elizabeth is a researcher of mother-infant relationships, infant growth, and the early life origins of health. She received her PhD in Anthropology from the University at Albany, SUNY, for her biocultural anthropological research into how mothers’ unequal exposure to stress can affect maternal health, as well as contribute to small changes in infant growth through epigenetic mechanisms. Her current research identifies how maternal-infant dynamics and maternal stress may contribute to variation in the milk microbiome. A list of her published research can be found at google scholar here.


Graduate Students

Beatrice Caffe

Beatrice is in the Evolutionary Program and working in the Biocultural Anthropology Lab. She earned her BA in Anthropology at Humboldt State University. Her Master’s research will investigate the social, environmental and behavioral correlates of human milk immune factors. Her broader interests include reproductive health and maternal-infant microbiomes. Beatrice managed the infant probiotic study.








Undergraduate Students

Jenna Schmidt

Jenna Schmidt is Human Biology major. She is currently working in the lab and is a team member on the cannabis, human milk, & development project.






The Meehan Lab’s amazing former members



Courtney Helfrecht is an Assistant Professor at the University of Alabama in the Department of Anthropology. She is a biocultural anthropologist focused on investigating the effects of stress on child health and development.






Wolayte Bogale in Ethiopia

Wolayte Bogale earned her bachelor degree from BahirDar University in Ethiopian language studies in 2006 and her MA from Addis Ababa University in Sociolinguistics in 2009. She was awarded her Ph.D. in 2020 from Washington State University.  Her dissertation research focused on homelessness among women and children in Hawassa Ethiopia.