Triplets’ rare diagnosis changes grad student’s focus

Bryan Weichelt was already working on a doctorate when his newborn identical triplet boys were diagnosed with a rare virus, shifting his focus and spurring him to become an advocate for human parechovirus type 3 awareness.

“I spent a lot of time in the hospital during that period,” Weichelt said. “It was like a short-term internship as well. It was a great learning experience, as bad of an experience as it was. It certainly framed who I am and why I chose to do research the way I did.”

The Army veteran and his family of six live in Stratford, three hours from UWM. Weichelt was drawn to complete his degree at the university’s nationally renowned biomedical and health informatics program. He finished his studies while holding a full-time job as a project manager at Marshfield Clinic.

“The flexibility of UWM, and working with my advisor and the committee on the project, was fantastic,” Weichelt said.

Weichelt was one of six graduates honored during UWM’s May 2016 commencement ceremonies. More than 3,000 students received diplomas.

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