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If you missed HBO’s TV movie, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks last weekend then I highly encourage you to watch it. The movie is based on the award winning book of the same name by Rebecca Skloot. My co-workers and I had the privilege of attending a pre-screening thanks to HBO and Johns Hopkins last Friday here on the East Baltimore-Medical Campus. We came away impressed and discussing the impact Henrietta and her family’s story had on medical ethics.

Pre-screening

Starring Oprah Winfrey as Henrietta Lacks’s daughter, the movie focuses on the impact of Henrietta’s family when her biopsied cells became famous in the medical and scientific world. The movie hints at the ethical missteps that occurred surrounding Henrietta and her family and highlights the basic human conditions of love, loss and friendship. However, a great deal of the book was cut out of the film. Having read the book shortly after being published, I remain most drawn to how the story of Henrietta Lacks changed the culture of medicine. In addition to the movie version’s themes, the book explores the development of medical ethics, the impact of the unprecedented events on the doctors and pathologists involved, how common procedures changed and the ethics surrounding emerging medical technology. As much as I enjoyed HBO’s adaptation, I missed the ethical questions in the midst of sharing Deborah Lacks’s search to know the mother she lost at such a young age.

Johns Hopkins granted HBO full access to their archives and allowed several days of filming to take place on the hospital grounds. The Johns Hopkins Urban Health Institute also honors Lacks through the Urban Health Institute Henrietta Lacks Memorial Award, which is a $15,000 award that supports community-university collaborations. For anybody interested in the story, I highly recommend both the book and movie

The last week in Baltimore has felt more summer like than spring, but nobody on the East Baltimore Medical Campus is complaining. Here are some photos of our green spaces in the middle of the city.

Students, Faculty and Staff eat lunch in the courtyard

Medical School Courtyard

Outside Hampton House

Students walk along N Broadway

 

If you’ve been following the JHSPH Instagram Account (johnshopkinssph), then you probably saw the beautiful picture from April 2, 2017 of the Bloomberg School lit up in blue lights. While April 2 was World Autism Awareness Day and April is National Autism Awareness Month, Autism research is a part of daily life here at JHSPH.

The Wendy Klag Center for Autism & Developmental Disabilities promotes research and education regarding the origins, detection, measurement and prevention of conditions that affect behavioral, socioemotional and/or cognitive development. As one of the centers and institutes affiliated with JHSPH, the Wendy Klag Center offers funding for student and post-doctoral research projects, student travel awards and internship placement. If the mission and research of the Wendy Klag Center are of interest to you, be sure to take a look at the opportunities available to Bloomberg School students.

And if you want to learn more about the Wendy Klag Center and the state of Autism and Autism research in the United States, enjoy this award winning video.

 

In Admissions Services, we are often asked about our alumni. Sometimes it’s difficult to answer where and what fields our alumni are working in because of the diverse paths our students take. As you know, Public Health is a massive field. Add in our ten different departments and twelve different types of graduate degrees, and you can start to see why we hesitate to answer.

However, the answers just got a bit easier to share! The recently updated Career Outcomes Survey Report is now available on the Career Services website. All living Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health alumni were surveyed and Career Services received responses from 632 alumni, with 52% of those responses from 2010-2015 graduates. Overall, answers date back to graduation year 1958. This means there is a mix of representation between recent alumni and mid-career to professionally seasoned alumni.

Career Services has provided several versions from the full report and snapshot, as well as shorter versions broken down by department and the degrees within the department.

You can also always check on our alumni, and even see who some are, on that Alumni Career Insights section of LinkedIn.

Last spring was the inaugural LightCity Baltimore, where technology and art merged for a weeklong event at the Inner Harbor (check out last year’s blog that mentioned LightCity). With family friendly activities, foodie favorite vendors and local band performances, LightCity Baltimore was declared a success and advertised its 2017 return before the inaugural week was over.

While the favorites from last year remain, one of the additions to the 2017 Light City Baltimore are daytime “labs”, or mini-conferences, open to the public. With the HealthLab kicking off the series, the Bloomberg School was right there with faculty, current students and an alumna presenting.

Jeffrey Kahn, Director of the Berman Institute of Bioethics, spoke on the ethics of genetic editing. At the basis of all advancements he asked, “How do we control these kinds of technologies? Science does not know borders.”

Later in the day a fourth year PhD student in the Department of Mental Health, David Fakunle, and MPH alumna Sonia Sarkar presented on the important role community engagement plays on health. And current part-time MPH student Nick Rodricks got things moving—literally—while speaking about building community through fitness.

With all the buzz surrounding this year’s LightCity, I can only imagine what next year’s event will bring!