The SPHHS Insider - November 2014

Kinesiology Department uses virtual dissection devices to transform the teaching of Anatomy & Physiology

New technology is transforming the teaching of Anatomy & Physiology in the UMass Amherst Kinesiology Department, recently ranked by USA Today as the #2 program in the nation to major in health and physical fitness. The department's newly acquired Anatomage tables provide a virtual dissection device that displays virtual cadavers generated from over 10,000 high-resolution images. The images are fully interactive, movable and sliceable, allowing students to see what they would see in an actual cadaver lab without the expense, chemicals or safety concerns.

Watch the video to learn more!


Reich leads development of a new tool for identifying onset of local influenza outbreaks

Predicting the beginning of influenza outbreaks is notoriously difficult, and can affect prevention and control efforts. Now, just in time for flu season, Assistant Professor of Biostatistics Nicholas Reich and colleagues have devised a simple yet accurate method for hospitals and public health departments to determine the onset of elevated influenza activity. Details of the new open-source tool they designed appear in the current issue of Clinical Infectious Diseases. The authors say their algorithm, which they call Above Local Elevated Respiratory Illness Threshold (ALERT), will signal a rise in influenza transmission and assist public health officials, doctors, and hospitals with prevention and healthcare delivery.

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UMass Amherst researchers find that climate change may increase airborne allergens

Results of a new study by scientists at the University of Massachusetts Amherst strongly suggest that there will be notable increases in grass pollen production and allergen exposure up to 202% in the next 100 years, leading to a significant, worldwide impact on human health due to predicted rises in carbon dioxide (CO2) and ozone due to climate change. In this study in Timothy grass, researchers led by Christine Rogers, Research Assistant Professor of Environmental Health Sciences, determined the interactive effects of CO2 and ozone at projected higher levels on pollen production and concentrations of a Timothy grass pollen protein that is a major human allergen. Findings are reported in the current issue of PLOS ONE.

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Public Health students help to promote indigenous youth resilience

Photo (clockwise from left): Shirley Zhen, Idun Klakegg and Katie Rowlett of Haverford College, Steele Valenzuela, Lucas Trout of Seattle University, and Hannah Weinronk

This past summer Public Health undergraduates Hannah Weinronk and Shirley Zhen, along with Epidemiology graduate student Steele Valenzuela, spent six weeks in Kotzebue, Alaska, in support of a pilot research project led by Associate Professor of Community Health Education Lisa Wexler. The project, titled Intergenerational Dialogue Exchange and Action (IDEA), is designed to work with local leaders and Elders to highlight community strengths in order to promote youth resilience among Arctic indigenous youth. The study takes a community-based participatory approach built on a storytelling model that provides opportunities for local role models to teach youth about their own lives in ways that make healthy strategies for action apparent and relevant to indigenous young people’s daily experiences.

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Student Profile: Clarissa Ocampo, Communication Disorders, '15

Clarissa Ocampo is a second year Master’s student concentrating in Speech-Language Pathology. She performed part of her clinical practicum in the Philippines this past summer. We spoke with her about the experience.

What made you decide to do your summer internship in the Philippines?

I needed to fulfill 400 hours of clinical work as a requirement for my degree, most of which had to be in an off-campus setting; but I wanted to go home to the Philippines for the summer to be with my family, and to fulfill my summer concert season. I am an opera singer by profession before I came to UMass.

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Public Health alumna Mary Ann Petti, MPH ’12, named “30 Under 30” by the Society for Public Health Education

Public Health alumna Mary Ann Petti, MPH ’12, recently received a Society for Public Health Education (SOPHE) “30 Under 30” award as part of its 2014 National Health Education Week campaign. Held this year from October 20-24, 2014, National Health Education Week focuses national attention on a major public health issue and promotes consumers’ understanding of the role of health education in promoting the public’s health. Petti and other “30 Under 30” winners were recognized for their contributions to promoting and improving population health and providing health education services for cost-effective prevention, wellness, and disease management.

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November 2014

 

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Kinesiology alumnus Efosa Guobadia, ’07, embarks on around the world physical therapy service trip

Efosa L. Guobadia, who received his Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in Kinesiology from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 2007, will embark on an 8+-month trip around the world at the end of November. Guobadia, who earned his Doctorate in Physical Therapy (DPT) from the University of Scranton, will focus on service work and international connections and relationship building as he attempts to capture a perspective of physical therapy, health and service from around the world. His journey will take him through 20 countries in Latin America, Africa, Europe, Asia, and Oceania, before returning back to the U.S.

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Public Health alumna Eliza Shirazi, '13, returns to campus for kickboxing marathon

Public Health alumna and fitness expert Eliza Shirazi, '13, returned to campus on November 23rd for a cardio kickboxing marathon. Sponsored by Her Campus UMass Amherst, the event was held in the UMass Amherst Recreation Center. View the event's Facebook page for more information.


Announcements & Events

SPHHS announces new Graduate Certificate in Global Health

The School of Public Health and Health Sciences is proud to introduce its new Graduate Certificate in Global Health. The program is open to all current graduate students, and to non-matriculated working professionals who have an interest in global health. The certificate is 15 credits and is offered 100% online.

Learn more here.


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