The School of Public Health’s Student Ebola Action Committee (SEAC) was honored with the 2015 Tony Diggs Excellence Award for Innovation on April 2.
The award is one of a series of Diggs awards handed out each year by the University of Minnesota’s Student Unions & Activities. The honors recognize student groups that demonstrate creativity through recruitment, marketing, outreach to campus community, and other initiatives. They’re given in memory of Tony Diggs, a former director of UMN’s Student Activities Office who died of cancer in 2006.
“It’s nice to be recognized by the University for our efforts,” says SEAC committee co-chair and SPH student Shruthi Murali.
SEAC won the Innovation award for its mission to raise awareness on-campus of the Ebola epidemic and for putting on the forum, “Ebola: Local and Global Impact,” held on November 12, 2014.
The forum featured a keynote presentation by SPH McKnight Professor Michael Osterholm and a panel discussion with local zoonotic disease, medical and African community experts.
“We gave the campus community an opportunity to learn more about Ebola, and specifically, how the epidemic in West Africa was affecting the African communities within our own state,” says Murali. “It made what we were studying all the more real and gave us a feel for the types of things we could be doing in our later careers.”
In addition to holding the forum, SEAC also produced Ebola-related multimedia, raised money for the American Refugee Committee, and partnered with the Blake School for its own event on the epidemic.
SEAC recently renamed itself the Active Responsive Coalition (ARC) for Public Health in a move to expand on the success of its Ebola campaigns. The new name also comes with a revised mission of promoting “a culture of wellbeing at the University of Minnesota and serving as a rapid-response organization to address state, national, and global health efforts by engaging in the community through education and action.”
SEAC 2014/15 Members
Jane Frances Anyamele
~ Post by Charlie Plain