Grad Stops Ebola in Nigeria
Nigeria, Africa’s most populous country, recently saw its own Ebola outbreak emerge. But with a coordinated response led by a UAB SOPH graduate, it quickly became contained.
Faisal Shuaib, MD, DrPH, is head of the National Ebola Emergency Operations Center in Nigeria. “I’m accountable for ensuring that functional outbreak response systems are established to contain Ebola in Nigeria, and for establishing a comprehensive system that provides quality diagnosis, treatment, care, and follow-up of Ebola Patients, their contacts, and their families,” Shuaib says.
The World Health Organization declared the disease contained in Nigeria on October 20, following 42 days—two incubation periods—since the discharge of the last case.
“Despite this progress, we are not letting our guard down. There is still a lot of work to be done,” Shuaib says. “As long as the disease rages on in other West African countries, there is always the risk of importation.”
Shuaib received his medical training in Nigeria, but says without a doubt his public health education from UAB provided the additional tools needed to rise up to the challenge of leading such an immense effort.
“I especially benefited from the focus on tropical infectious diseases, during which I learned the essential principles and practices related to the epidemiology and containment of viral hemorrhagic fevers like Ebola,” Shuaib says.
A TEDx Birmingham Talk by a SOPH Student, Ynhi Thai
As a second year MD/MPH student in the School of Public Health and School of Medicine, Ynhi Thai recently gave a TEDx Talk entitled, "Turn Your Assumptions into Empathy." In this personal speech, Thai shares the story of her family's immigration from Vietnam when she was a young child, and how our assumptions shape our mindset and actions, as well as those of other people. These assumptions limit a person’s contribution to their community and society's progress as a whole.
Her call to action is to allow our assumptions to become vulnerable by spending 30 seconds or less listening and connecting to someone. During those few seconds, a single word of encouragement could truly change the course of a person's life.
You may listen to Thai’s entire TEDx Talk here.
Undergrad Students Showcare High-Impact Community Projects at Clinton Global Initiative University Summit
Raghu Kasa and Rebecca Sylvester were recently selected for the Clinton Global Initiative University. Founded in 2007 by former President Bill Clinton, the Clinton Global Initiative University (CGIU) engages the next generation of campus leaders to address global issues in the Initiative’s five focus areas: education, environmental and climate change, peace and human rights, poverty alleviation, and public health. Applicants must propose a Commitment to Action – a new specific and measurable initiative that addresses pressing challenges in society.
Raghu’s Commitment to Action is to establish a new ONE chapter at UAB in order to campaign and advocate for the reduction of poverty in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Rebecca’s Commitment to Action is to modify the behavior of students, faculty and staff to take the stairs; she is committed to doing this by renovating stairwells across UAB's campus to be more visually appealing through the use of art, words of encouragement, and statistics and facts about the benefits of taking the stairs.
Jolly Honored for Lifetime Achievement in Teaching
Pauline Jolly, Ph.D., professor in the department of epidemiology and director of the UAB Minority Health International Research Training program, has won the 2014 Ellen Gregg Ingalls/UAB National Alumni Society Award for Lifetime Achievement in Teaching.
“This award serves as acknowledgement that I have been successful in fulfilling my calling in life, which is to teach,” Jolly said. “It reassures me that I have devoted my life to the right cause, that of helping students acquire relevant information and practical applications that allow them to solve existing, anticipated and unforeseen problems — both domestically and globally — thereby improving the lives of others.”
Jolly has educated and motivated UAB students for 23 years, teaching undergraduate, graduate, doctoral and postdoctoral courses along the way. Jolly joined UAB in 1991 as assistant professor and was promoted to associate professor in 1997 and professor in 2003.
PublicHealthOnline.org Ranks UAB Graduate Programs Among the Nation's Best
Online graduate programs in UAB's School of Public Health were included among the nation's best by PublicHealthOnline.org in its 2014-15 list of the Best Online MPH Programs.
UAB was ranked No. 14 in a tight field in which the top contenders were separated by three or fewer points.
Programs included in the rankings meet the standard of excellence of traditional on-campus public health programs and also provide students the flexibility to continue their graduate education while working and building experience in their chosen field.
Donna Arnett Invited to White House
Donna K. Arnett, PhD, MSPH, associate dean of the UAB School of Public Health and chair of the department of epidemiology, was invited to attend President Obama’s speech on the Precision Medicine Initiative (PMI).
Building on the announcement in his State of the Union Address, President Obama unveiled details about PMI, a bold new research effort to revolutionize how we improve health and treat disease. Launched with a $215 million investment in the President’s 2016 Budget, the initiative will pioneer a new model of patient-powered research that promises to accelerate biomedical discoveries and provide clinicians with new tools, knowledge, and therapies to select the most effective treatments for specific patients.