Andy was born and raised in Germany and received his Diplom, the German M.S. degree, from Dresden University of Technology. His work there focused on transcriptional regulation in the symbiotic bacterium Bradyrhizobium janponicum under the mentorship of Dr. Michael Göttfert. Andy then crossed the Atlantic and started his Ph.D. at the University of South Florida. In the group of Dr. Lindsey Shaw he investigated small accessory RNA polymerase subunits and small regulatory RNAs in Staphylococcus aureus. In the Skaar Lab, Andy is exploring the competition for essential metals between S. aureus and the human host during infection.