Epidemiology, Re-emerging Infectious Diseases, and Pandemics

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Epidemology, Re-emerging Infectious Diseases, and Pandemics
Special Course
Course CodeEPID
Year Opened2006
Sites OfferedPRN
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Course Description

From the CTY course catalog:

Students in this course investigate the science and politics of disease. From examining the role that epidemiologists play in unlocking the points of origin of pandemics to dissecting the behavior of policymakers as they address AIDS or the avian flu, students gain insight into the cause and spread of global diseases, the role of scientists in identifying, controlling, and/or preventing diseases, and the political and ethical implications therein. This course focuses throughout on the tools scientists use—from statistical analysis to computer modeling to biomedical research—as they combat diseases in the present and prepare for diseases in the future.

Class History

EPID is a fabulous class. For EPIDB in 2013, the course was taught by Dr John Nwangwu and TA Sam. It was a comprehensive overview of epidemiology, with much-appreciated insight from Dr Nwangwu about what working in the medical field (particularly as an epidemiologist) entails. Class was fun and always interesting. We read The Coming Plague, watched multiple documentaries, and did a few labs. Sam invented a version of hangman that involves infecting entire populations through their water supply, and Zaire totally beat Vítropolis (by like, four points). Additionally, Dr Nwangwu is really cool, famous, and probably a superhero, so we made him a Wikipedia page. EPIDA seemed very similar to HDIS, but EPIDB at least was very true to the course description.

In 2015, EPI A was again taught by Dr. Nwangwu, who is without a doubt the coolest teacher you will ever have. Super sweet guy, liked to call our class "his babies" and "wishes he could take us home with him." You know you're a really good student when Dr. Nwangwu shouts "BRILLIANT" at you after answering a question correctly. Don't get upset if you don't get any "brilliants" though (@Elly). Our TA Shay was amazing and she brought us candy a bunch of times, which was super dope. We read "The Coming Plague" almost every day, but nobody even came close to finishing it. Really fun class, really interesting, but not sciencey at all. This class was mainly math. Don't be fooled by the course description, the "labs" are actually just worksheets you do every day. The debate at the end of the session with both EPI classes was really great, things get pretty heated pretty quickly (If you're not circumcised you might wanna keep that on the down low). Great class, would highly recommend to anyone considering it.

In 2017, EPI A was taught by Bill Watkins, the most worldly and tall teacher you will have. Our TA Jianne was very nice and was almost always able to convince Bill to let us read outside and have longer breaks. The class is very interesting, but less "sciencey"than most of us expected. We had multiple, fun field trips throughout the class including the Princeton cemetery, art museum, chapel, and fountain. Other class activities included drawing on the chalkboards, learning African dances from Bill, and singing the Canadian and Chinese national anthems!