The clinical microbiology section of the Division of Laboratory and Genomic Medicine offers a postdoctoral fellowship in medical and public health microbiology. Graduates of the fellowship program are immediately eligible to sit for the American Board of Medical Microbiology (ABMM) examination and if successful, are qualified to direct Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA)-certified clinical microbiology laboratories throughout the United States.


The fellowship in medical and public health microbiology was initially accredited by CPEP in spring 2001 under the direction of Mike Dunne, PhD, and accepted its first fellow (Robert Liao, PhD) in July 2002. In 2011 Carey-Ann Burnham, PhD became the fellowship program director and the program was re-accredited in 2015. All of our program graduates have successfully obtained board certification and are working in the field of clinical microbiology.


The fellowship training is roughly divided into two years and follows the “Essentials of Training” as prescribed by CPEP. In addition, we have individualized our program and added features unique to the strengths of Washington University School of Medicine and Barnes-Jewish Hospital. For example, we have incorporated rotations in clinical pharmacology, pediatric microbiology and infectious diseases (including general ID, bone and joint ID and transplant ID). In addition, we have an outstanding research environment and faculty and the potential for collaborations in a wide variety of areas, including the microbiome and pathogen genomics.

In addition to scheduled rotations, fellows attend hospital antibiotic utilization meetings, infection prevention committee meetings and the microbiology-infectious diseases liaison group on a monthly to quarterly basis. They also participate in the weekly adult and pediatric infectious diseases conferences, weekly microbiology case conferences, weekly “beeper” reports (a discussion of all patient-related questions from the previous week for which they were paged), bi-weekly management meetings and a weekly didactic lecture series provided by the program director.

During the second half of their junior year and throughout their senior year, fellows participate in the call rotation where they interact on a daily basis with clinical staff to approve testing, answer questions and solve problems related to patient care as it pertains to clinical microbiology. Finally, during two months of their senior year, in the “acting director rotation,” fellows take responsibility for direction and management of the clinical microbiology work. In addition to training in clinical microbiology, fellows interact on a regular basis with pathology residents and fellows in clinical chemistry, transfusion medicine and molecular diagnostics. Microbiology fellows also participate in a number of laboratory medicine conferences. The result is a broad training experience with knowledge in all areas of laboratory medicine.


Training for the fellowship occurs in state-of-the-art facilities at Washington University School of Medicine/Barnes-Jewish Hospital/St. Louis Children’s Hospital. In January 2016, the laboratory moved into brand new facilities, equipped with laboratory automation, molecular diagnostics, and MALDI-TOF MS. In addition to training at our facility, fellows participate in away rotations at the Wisconsin State Public Health Laboratory, St. Louis University, ARUP and the County Health Department.


Applications are accepted each year from July 1 to September 2. Please apply through the CPEPE website here –

Melanie L. Yarbrough, PhD
Program Director – Fellowship in Medical and Public Health Microbiology
Washington University School of Medicine
660 South Euclid Avenue, Campus Box 8118
St. Louis, MO 63110

For general questions, please contact Justavian Tillman at

Faculty and trainees


Current trainees

Contact information

Lana Torry
Fellowship Program Administrator
Phone: 314-273-5476