ECU Alum: Treating Ebola ‘an experience that few can imagine’

Adams, right, inspects the protective gear worn by another U.S. Public Health Service officer before the officer enters the Ebola treatment unit outside Monrovia, Liberia. (Photo courtesy U.S. Public Health Service Service)

Adams, right, inspects the protective gear worn by another U.S. Public Health Service officer before the officer enters the Ebola treatment unit outside Monrovia, Liberia. (Photo courtesy U.S. Public Health Service Service)

 

Daniel Adams, a 1999 ECU graduate, could have chosen to remain in his white-collar job overseeing management effectiveness programs at Environmental Protection Agency labs in Research Triangle Park and four other locations. Instead, he resigned that post to travel half a world away to help fight the Ebola crisis in Liberia.

Now a lieutenant commander in the U.S. Public Health Service, Adams has served since February as the preventative medicine officer at the Monrovia Medical Unit located about 30 miles outside the Liberian capitol.

The 25-bed hospital provided by the U.S. Defense Department opened last November. It is the only U.S. government-funded medical facility in Liberia.

“We have mainly focused on treating healthcare workers who have contracted Ebola so they can get back on the front lines of treating their fellow countrymen,” Adams said. “We have celebrated life and mourned the loss of life over the past couple of months.”

The Public Health Service “has allowed me to be part of a strong mission with positive effects worldwide,” he said. “Helping treat the Ebola patients in Liberia has been an experience that few can imagine.”

The Monrovia Medical Unit, which was built to care for medical workers who become infected with the Ebola virus, sits about 30 miles outside Liberia's capital. The 25-bed facility recently treated what officials hope will be its last Ebola-positive patient. (Photo courtesy U.S. Army)

The Monrovia Medical Unit, which was built to care for medical workers who become infected with the Ebola virus, sits about 30 miles outside Liberia’s capital. The 25-bed facility recently treated what officials hope will be its last Ebola-positive patient. (Photo courtesy U.S. Army)

He said a highlight of his service came recently when MMU staff treated what they hope will be the last Ebola-positive patient in the country.

A native of Greenville, Adams served in the Army after graduation and worked overseas as a civilian military employee. He also did postgraduate work at Anna Maria College in Massachusetts.

“I remember a leader in (the Public Health Service Officer Basic Course) telling me that we are here to ‘serve the underserved.’ I took that to heart.”

He said those words made an impression on him because that’s what he learned at ECU. “I feel it is important for everyone associated with ECU to hear how we reach around the world to help serve the unserved populations.”

Volunteering to serve at the Ebola clinic isn’t the first time Adams has sought out new experiences. “At my wedding reception in the Philippines, I requested that we have food indigenous to the area. I got what I wished for – bat!”

– Steve Tuttle

Sex, seduction in Donne’s poetry topic of final Voyages lecture

Williams College professor of English Dr. Illona Bell will present “Sex and Seduction in John Donne’s Poetry” at 7 p.m. March 24 in Bate 1032, East Carolina University.

Bell

Bell

The event is free and no tickets are required.

Bell is the Samuel Fessenden Clark Professor of English at Williams College, with expertise in Renaissance literature, Shakespeare, Elizabeth I, early modern women writers, lyric poetry and Virginia Woolf. She is the author of “Elizabeth I: The Voice of a Monarch,” “Elizabethan Women and the Poetry of Courtship” and numerous essays on Renaissance poetry and early modern women. She also edited “John Donne: Selected Poems.”

Bell received her Ph.D. in literature from Boston College in 1977 and her B.A. in literature from Radcliffe College in 1969. Her presentation concludes the 2014-15 Voyages of Discovery Lecture Series.

For additional information about the Voyages series and its speakers, visit www.ecu.edu/voyages. More information about Harriot College is available at www.ecu.edu/cas.

ECU Alumni Association names award winners

The East Carolina Alumni Association has announced the recipients of the 2015 Robert H. Wright Alumni Leadership Award. These five students will be presented with the award during commencement ceremonies on Friday, May 8.

The most prestigious award for undergraduates at East Carolina University, the Wright award recognizes academic achievement, service to both the university and community, and demonstrated leadership. Recipients are recognized as those who will make a positive impact on their respective professions and communities.

In addition to receiving the Wright medallion at commencement, recipients are given a lifetime membership in the East Carolina Alumni Association.

Recipients are:

  • Ajay Ajmera of Greenville, NC; biology and chemistry double-major
  • Matthew Ryan Baucom of Marshville, NC; chemistry and biochemistry double-major
  • Jessica Katlyn Jewell of Clayton, NC; communication major
  • Shayna Nitin Mooney of Winterville, NC; neuroscience and international studies double-major
  • Kristi Noelle Wilkerson of Mastic, NY; nutrition major.

 

Workshops to focus on veterans, military

CWS Brian Turner

 

East Carolina University’s Contemporary Writer Series will host a three-day series of workshops for veterans, military service members and military families March 25 – 27.

All events are free and open to the public. The series will focus on expressing experiences through fiction, non-fiction or visual art. Participants may also wish to contribute to a new publication, The ECU Veterans Anthology.

Veteran poet and essayist Brian Turner will open the series at 7:30 p.m. March 25 in the East Carolina Heart Institute auditorium. Turner will read from his work and discuss his experiences as infantry team leader for the 3 rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team in Iraq from 2003-2004. He is the author of “Here Bullet” (2005), “Phantom Noise” (2010) and “My Life as a Foreign Country” (2014).

A book signing and question and answer session will immediately follow.

A poetry reading at 7 p.m. March 26 in the Greenville Museum of art will feature award-winning poet Ilyse Kusnetz and former North Carolina poet laureate Joseph Bathanti. A book signing and question and answer session will follow readings from both poets’ work.

Kusnetz teaches at Valencia College and lives in Orlando, Fla., with her husband, poet and memoirist Brian Turner. She holds a Ph.D. in feminist and postcolonial British literature from the University of Edinburgh and an M.A. in creative writing from Syracuse University. Bathanti is a professor of creative writing at Appalachian State University and the 2012 state poet laureate. His writings focus on veterans and their families. His honors include the Sam Ragan Fine Arts Award, the Carolina Novel Award and the Linda Flowers Literary Award from the N.C. Humanities Council.

A full listing of events and registration is available at http://www.eventbrite.com/e/veteran-writers-workshop-tickets-15846084064.

For additional information about the workshops, contact Jason Faulkner, teaching instructor in the Department of English, at 252-328-5177 or faulknerj@ecu.edu. For additional information about the events featuring Turner, Kusnetz or Bathanti, contact John Hoppenthaler, associate professor of English, at 252-328-5562; hoppenthalerj@ecu.edu, or Thomas Douglass, associate professor of English, at 252-328-6723; douglasst@ecu.edu.

The workshops are cosponsored by Operation Re-Entry North Carolina, Office of Student Transitions, Pirate Veterans and the Office of the Provost.

Rogers Awarded Technology Transfer Scholarship

East Carolina University Technology Transfer Fellow Dr. Carlyle Rogers, a 2013 graduate of the Brody School of Medicine, was honored for creativity and innovation in his career.

Carlyle Rogers

Carlyle Rogers

Rogers, of Williamston, was awarded the 2015 Howard Bremer Scholarship by the Association of University Technology Managers. The award supports students and professionals new to the field by covering the cost of travel and registration at the organization’s annual meeting.

Rogers attended the organization’s 2015 conference in New Orleans, where he focused his attention on crowdfunding, licensing and valuation of university technologies and copyright issues related to mobile applications and software.

As a technology transfer fellow at ECU, Rogers supports promising new inventions and promotes the university’s culture of innovation and entrepreneurism. “In every university there exists new and revolutionary inventions,” he said, but proper execution is critical to get the inventions from the idea to a commercial product.

“That is where technology transfer becomes important; it serves as the vehicle for executing the development of university inventions to commercial products,” Rogers said.

The role ECU plays in supporting technology transfer is critical because so many eastern North Carolina counties face a declining population, with potential leaders moving away from the area instead of reinvesting in the region, he said.

“To change this pattern, ECU and eastern North Carolina must look to innovation and research as a means to create new industries, new jobs and a way to strengthen the economic fabric” of the region.

Rogers holds a Ph.D. in pharmacology and toxicology from the Brody School of Medicine and a B.S. in biology from ECU.

For additional information on ECU’s Office of Technology Transfer, contact Marti Van Scott, director of the Office of Technology Transfer, at 252-328-9545 or vanscottm@ecu.edu.

ECU professor to serve as Steffy Lecturer

ECU maritime studies professor Dr. David J. Stewart was asked by the Archaeological Institute of America (AIA) to serve as the 2015-16 J. Richard Steffy Lecturer.

David Stewart

David Stewart

The lecture was established in 2008 to commemorate Mr. Steffy’s work in ship reconstruction and the interpretation of wooden ships.

Stewart will deliver a series of presentations to AIA societies on the Kyrenia Ship, Steffy’s most notable reconstruction achievement. The ship, which sank off Cyprus in about 285 B.C., is the best preserved ancient Greek hull available.

In 2011, Stewart led a team that conducted a complete 3D recording of the hull in Kyrenia Castle. He has been using computer modeling to gain a better understanding of the ship’s shape than was possible without the technology.

The ECU program in Maritime Studies is housed in the Department of History in the Thomas Harriot College of Arts and Sciences.

ECU Spring Career Fair set for Thursday

East Carolina University’s Career Services will host the annual Spring Career Fair from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. March 19 at Minges Coliseum and the Murphy Center.

The Spring Career Fair brings employers to ECU to meet with students and alumni who are seeking internships, co-op experiences and full-time career opportunities. Attendees can establish connections with potential employers as well as hone their networking skills.

More than 350 employers from 163 businesses and organizations will participate in the event to meet with ECU students and alumni.

“Employers frequently tell us they are impressed with the caliber of our students and the overall recruiting experience at ECU,” said Curtis Street, assistant director of employer relations with ECU Career Services.

The companies attending the career fair range from local firms in Greenville and Pitt County and others from across North Carolina. Some national and international companies also will participate. The companies expect to meet with students from a variety of majors during the three-hour event.

“More than 2,500 students and alums have attended the last three career fairs and more than 80 percent stated they gained employer contacts, an interview, or an internship,” said Street.

Students should dress in business professional attire and bring their ECU OneCard to the career fair. A full list of attending employers and additional career fair information is available on the Career Services website at www.ecu.edu/career.

For more information about the Spring Career Fair, contact Karen Thompson, director of ECU Career Services at (252) 328-6050.