Professor Rebecca Katz promotes open mindedness, encourages students to get out and explore the world, and warns about bats.

Professor Rebecca Katz promotes open mindedness, encourages students to get out and explore the world, and warns about bats.

April 10, 2018 News 0

If we do our job right, the future of global health should look a lot different.

On April 9th, Red House was delighted to host Associate Professor and Co-Director of the Center for Global Health Science and Security, Rebecca Katz, at the fourth Red House Dinner series event of the Spring semester.

With students from various schools and majors in attendance, Professor Katz provided career advice that was applicable to all. When asked about whether it is better to work in government or corporate sectors, Professor Katz suggested students pursue work that is meaningful to them. Professor Katz suggested a holistic approach: to avoid looking at careers along binaries like good and evil and instead look at all parts of a company or organization when considering work there. Using a specific example, she highlighted a palm oil farmer in Africa who, from company profits, provided his 4,000 workers and their families with extensive healthcare, which prevented them from contracting Ebola during the outbreak.

Professor Katz also spoke about how universities can best support interdisciplinary fields such as global health by allowing for more collaboration. In supporting faculty to work alongside students and faculty from different departments and majors to work together, projects can be influenced by a wider range of ideas and perspectives. As the world becomes more complex, the intersections between health, technology, and international affairs are more important than ever.

As an example of this interdisciplinary work, Professor Katz shared an overview about a new international initiative to map all the viruses in the world from bats. As one of the most dangerous animals for spreading diseases, the mapping of bats can be crucial to stopping epidemics like ebola from hurting so many people. Through other technological partnerships information can be more readily available and accessed to its best ability. For example, the Children’s Hospital in Cincinnati, Ohio is able to predict increases in asthma attacks off of Twitter data.These incredible initiatives offer a glimpse into the future of global health as one that is open to this innovation along with collaboration with diverse minds and skill sets.

We are excited to host our fifth and final dinner of this semester on April 26th. Students can join the Red House Student Network listserv here to be the first to receive information about signups and stay up to date about all upcoming Red House events. You can also find us on Facebook.

If you are a faculty member who would like to share your work or join our conversations around modern issues in higher education, please email the Red House at

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