Discussing Ebola at the Wellcome Collection

Dated: 16 January 2019

 
 
Biology and Chemistry student Edward Bickers reports on a recent trip to The Wellcome Collection (a museum and library based in London, displaying an unusual mixture of medical artefacts and original artworks exploring "ideas about the connections between medicine, life and art")
 
 
 
"I was fortunate to have the chance to accompany a group of Upper and Lower Sixth students to the Wellcome Collection near Euston train-station on Wednesday, 5th December to attend an event focussed around the still-painfully-recent Ebola epidemic in West Africa, and to listen to some particularly interesting and experienced speakers.
 
Interestingly, all of the speakers had had critical experience in tackling the aforementioned epidemic, yet provided several different viewpoints, having been involved with a variety of approaches to tackling the issue.
 
 
 
Despite a rapt interest in the information presented by all of the speakers, the testimony I found most interesting was that of a man who had experienced first-hand the terror of Ebola, having been shut in a house with a brother dying of Ebola. The insights he provided, undercutting, although, perhaps, as well, supporting the scientific and social media-wise strategies reported by two of the talkers, were both touching and fascinating – I have never been so privileged as to meet someone who has withstood so much pain and fear.
 
 
 
Of course, the event was not without an educational overtone – from a truly eye-opening account of life in an Ebola research lab, to a humorous introduction to an array of colourful social media/radio methods of getting information to the public, we were swimming in all the engrossing information we could want.
 
As could be expected, there was a discussion session at the end, which, to be rather blunt, collapsed a little; a good thing, however, as the sheer number of excellent questions presented by the audience was the wrench in the engine that brought the event to a grinding halt, meaning that some of us were at the mercy of a few rather inquisitive friends whilst the seconds ticked past.
 
In all seriousness however, it was worth the wait. The trip was massively interesting and an undeniably valuable experience; there really is no overstating the interest, food for thought and, frankly, enjoyment that this event provided.
 
I look forward to capitalising on similar opportunities in the future and encourage all other Science students to keep their eyes out for the next invaluable experience."
 
 
Teacher Ms Doyle with a printed version of the human genome 


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