Licensed Genetic Counselor

SweetKevinAssistant Professor - Clinical, Human Genetics

Comprehensive Cancer Center
2012 Kenny Road
Columbus, OH 43221


  • Licensed genetic counselor: Ohio Board of Medical Examiners, 2013 - present
Specialty interests:
  • Clinical cancer genetics
  • Family history tools and risk assessment

Clinical interests: 

Mr. Sweet’s clinical duties include providing comprehensive cancer genetic consultations to individuals and families with a history of cancer. Cancer genetic consultation requires documentation of cancers in the family, risk assessment, screening recommendations and incorporation of genetic testing as necessary. To schedule an appointment, call 614-293-6694 or toll free at 1-888-329-1654. 


MS: Human genetics, Sarah Lawrence College, 1994
BS: Microbiology, University of Wisconsin, 1988


Over the course of 16 years of clinical research at The Ohio State University, my focus of study has been gene discovery and clinical translation for hereditary cancer syndromes, clinical implementation of automated online family history risk assessment tools and development of genetic and genomic service delivery models. As summarized in the grant and publications sections of my dossier, I have directed and published a number of original investigations (29 since my last promotion) in each of these areas. My work in hereditary cancer syndromes includes a 14-year collaboration with investigators at the University of Toronto on hereditary breast-ovarian cancer syndrome. Given the lack of study on the condition of hyperplastic (serrated) polyposis, upon professional travel to the University of Brisbane, I was fortunate to make inroads with local investigators which have since become the largest international collaboration on this rare condition. Through work on development of automated family history tools, The Ohio State University Division of Human Genetics has obtained a national reputation and informing public policy. In 2008, I launched the online public access version of Family HealthLink® an automated cancer and coronary heart disease family history triage tool. In 2012, I directed the implementation of Family HealthLink® at The Ohio State University Stefanie Spielman Comprehensive Breast Center, and recently published our findings on clinical utility (i.e. public and patient cohorts) in Genetics in Medicine. Family HealthLink® is listed as a general public resource on the NHGRI website, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It was promoted through a Wall Street Journal article, "The Life-Saving Secrets in Your Family Tree'' and has been advertised on WOSU radio and other local and national media outlets.

As a researcher in the newer field of genomic medicine, I am deeply committed to advancing our understanding of innovative genetic and genomic counseling service delivery models. In 2010, following establishment of an OSU research partnership with the Coriell Personalized Medicine Collaborative, I was asked to lead the design and implementation of a longitudinal study to investigate the impact of in-person genomic counseling in the return of actionable genomic information for complex disease and pharmacogenomics. Specifically, OSU patients with chronic disease managed in an academic medical center receive genomic results through a web portal, and are randomized to additional in-person post-test genomic counseling versus only the web-based return of results. Through the years, this partnership has evolved into a coordinated effort that takes advantage of the diversity and strengths of each institution. Significant infrastructure was developed that allows confidential sharing of data between institutions, including direct release of study results for uploading to the OSU EHR, extraction of clinical data from the EHR and transfer of the genomic datasets for research purposes. Study findings led to an NIH/NHGRI R21 award, for which I’m the principal investigator on a qualitative research study to assess and develop new genomic counseling service delivery models. In this regard, in the last year we have performed qualitative interviews of OSU-Coriell study participants, and incorporated genomic counseling experts from four academic institutions (University of Michigan; Stanford University; UNC-Chapel Hill; University of Pennsylvania) into the process. I will have a number of first-author publications from this work. This ongoing collaborative and multi-institutional effort will also allow for submission for RO1 level funding. Lastly, this work also ties into development of the clinical pharmacogenomics program at Ohio State, and has allowed for my involvement as co-investigator (10% FTE) on the funded Translational Pharmacogenomics Program as part of the NIH/NIGMS Pharmacogenomics Regional Network. 

These research accomplishments have resulted in accolades such as invited speaking engagements at international, national and local levels, nominations on four separate committees of the National Society of Genetic Counselors – Jane Engelberg Memorial Fellowship (JEMF), Practice Guidelines Committee, Efficient Delivery of Genetic Services Task Force and the Personalized Medicine Special Interest Group – and reviewer on numerous outstanding journals. Having now trained and performed research in multiple divergent areas of genetic and genomics, I have gained a unique perspective that is allowing me to forge a novel upward trajectory towards innovative, collaborative and ultimately translational health-related science. 

As my teaching has been evaluated by fixed-response surveys with opportunity for open comments, I consistently use this feedback to alter my teaching methodology. I have reflected on and responded to student feedback and have remained motivated to improve the teaching-learning environment through varied instructional approaches. For example, for a new 2015 graduate level course, Pharmacogenomics 5700, I had the opportunity to use online instruction to a larger degree. As effective teaching also involves assessment of student potential for future pursuits in the form of recommendation letters, I’ve had ample opportunity to advise Ohio State undergraduate and graduate students, with most performing a one to two year internship. These students are evaluated in terms of their academic, clinical and research capabilities, as well as their general character. I have written letters of recommendation for 12 undergraduate and graduate students pursuing advanced degrees, and all have successfully advanced to the next level. As chair of JEMF, the primary grant funding agency for the National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC), I was involved with the development of the "JEMF Graduate Student Award," which supports ongoing work for graduate thesis projects of genetic counseling students in training. Applicants submit a formal research proposal, which is reviewed and ranked by the JEMF Advisory Committee. During my tenure as chair, we provided awards to 36 graduate students, of which 32 subsequently published thesis work. I was active advisor and mentor for a number of these students. I am also faculty adviser for graduate students in The Ohio State University Genetic Counselor Graduate Training Program and currently a mentor of two graduate students. I provide classroom and clinical instruction for the training program. Lastly, in recent years, I authored two peer-reviewed books on genomic medicine – one for medical professionals, "The Busy Physician's Guide to Genetics, Genomics and Personalized Health Care" and the second for the lay public, "Your Genes, Your Health and Personalized Medicine." Each are used in graduate and professional education.

My accomplishments in service include both university and professional and national service. I provide service to The Ohio State University Division of Human Genetics as a licensed and certified genetic counselor. I serve as graduate student adviser and faculty member for The Ohio StateUniversity Genetic Counselor Graduate Training Program. I'm an active member of Ohio State's Personalized Genomic Medicine Working Group, the OSU Translational Pharmacogenomics Project and the OSU Bioinformatics Research Group. I served a two-year term on the OSU Cancer Institutional Review Board and multiple years on the OSU Clinical Implementation Working Group, the OSU Personalized Health Assessment Working Group, the OSU E-Tablet Initiative and the OSU Personalized Healthcare Virtual Genomics Working Group. 

At the professional and national level, through invited presentations locally, nationally and internationally, I strive to bring recognition to the tremendous merits of The Ohio State University. I was a founding member and chair of the NSGC Personalized Medicine-Special Interest Group, a core driver for genomics education and development of applications and tools to support our profession. I was an invited abstract reviewer and Program Moderator for the 2014 American Society of Human Genetics conference. I'm currently involved (3-year service commitment) as elected advisor to the NSGC Practice Guidelines Committee and, more recently was asked to join a new NSGC Efficient Delivery of Genetic Services task force. I will continue such service accepting more opportunities as presented as my research continues to attract prominence in multiple disciplines, whilst forging lucrative contacts with colleagues across the world.


Sweet K, Phelan M, Tarleton J, Crawford E, Christensen B, Schroer R, Taylor H. Counseling Aids for Geneticists. Greenwood: Greenwood Genetic Center, January 1995

Saul RA, Phelan MC, Geer JS, Seaver LH, Sweet KM. Growth References: Third Trimester to Adulthood. Greenwood: Greenwood Genetic Center, January 1998

Sweet, Kevin M; Michaelis, Ron C. The Busy Physician's Guide to Genetics, Genomics and Personalized Medicine. Dordrecht; New York: Springer, January 2011. Review in Journal of Medical Genetics

Michaelis, R. and Sweet, K. Your Genes, Your Health and Personalized Medicine. Oxford, GB|GBR: Nottingham University Press, August 2012. Review in Society of Teachers of Family Medicine

Clinical Services

Clinical services

  • OSUWMC Center for Personalized Health Care, McCampbell Hall, 2011 - 2013
  • Division of Human Genetics, Stefanie Spielman Comprehensive Breast Center, 2011
  • Director, Family HealthLink Cancer and Coronary Heart Disease Risk Assessment Program, 2007
  • Division of Human Genetics, OSUWMC clinic locations, 1999

Civic Engagement

Team leader and 100-mile Pelotonia rider, 2009-2014
Stefanie's Team of Hope, the largest non-corporate Peloton

Editorial Activities

Present Activities
  • Journal of Genetic Counseling
  • Genetics in Medicine
  • Clinical Genetics

Past Activities

  • Personalized Medicine, 2012
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology, 2004

Journal Articles

Reference Works



Unpublished Works




Noteworthy Graduate Narrative

As the chair of the Jane Engelberg Memorial Fellowship Advisory Committee (JEMF), the primary funding agency for the National Society of Genetic Counselors, I oversaw the development of the "JEMF Graduate Student Award Program," which has since become an annual national award provided to graduate students in training. Applicants submit a formal research proposal, which is reviewed and ranked by the JEMF Advisory Committee. The award supports ongoing work as part of a graduate thesis projects. During my tenure as chair, we provided awards to 36 graduate students, of which 32 recipients subsequently published thesis work. I was active advisor and mentor on a number of student thesis projects. 

I am a faculty adviser for graduate students in Ohio State's Genetic Counselor Graduate Training Program, and currently mentor two graduate students. I provide classroom and clinical instruction for the training program.

Academic Advisees

  • Karen Wernke, The Ohio State University
  • Andrew McFaden, The Ohio State University