Fall 2021     

Teaching Fellow

Who Lives? Who Dies? Who Cares? Reimagining Global Health

Harvard Extension School

  • Paul Farmer, Founding Director of Partners in Health and Professor of Global Health & Social Medicine

  • Arthur Kleinman, Professor of Medical Anthropology, of Psychiatry, and of Anthropology

  • Saalman Keshavjee, Professor of Global Health & Social Medicine, and Director of HMS Center for Global Health Delivery

  • Anne Becker, Dean for Clinical and Academic Affairs at HMS, and Professor of Global Health & Social Medicine

 

If you are sick or hurt, whether you live or die depends not only on biological factors, but social ones: who you are and where you are, what sort of healthcare system is available to help you survive, and what kind of care is available to help you recover, if society believes you deserve it. The global coronavirus pandemic illustrates with dramatic urgency the role social forces play in patterning health inequities and determining individual fates. The vulnerabilities of those most likely to get sick and to die from COVID-19 stem from the ongoing effects of systemic racism on racialized subjects, the devaluation of eldercare and precarity of low-paid work under neoliberal forms of governance, and enduring material effects of colonial-era power structures that render health care systems dangerously weak or inaccessible for many communities. Now, as ever, it is imperative to develop frameworks and methodologies to identify and to intervene effectively in harmful social configurations that cause illness and suffering. Most medical research narrowly focuses on the biological basis of disease, but this course takes a novel biosocial approach to reveal how governments, institutions, and histories shape health and well-being, how poverty and racism get into someone's lymph nodes, how cost-saving measures manifest as tuberculosis in someone's lungs. In doing so, the course challenges the conventional assumptions within the field of global health examining how interventions influence what happens after a catastrophe in unexpected ways, how the persistence of health inequalities over centuries can be explained, how the structures of powerful institutions influence the policies they develop, how the poor deserve not only health care but high quality health care, and how caregiving and global health are urgent moral practices.​

Summer 2021

Teaching Fellow

Political Intervention through the Arts

Harvard Summer School, Gen Ed

  • Doris Sommer, Professor of Romance Languages and of African & African American Studies

 

How does thinking like an artist ignite political change? Art is the intentional disruption of existing perceptions. Creating political and social change in relation to race, gender, education, climate change, business, and global health requires one to think like an artist and be fully engaged in the process of discovery and invention. To better prepare humanistic interventions that develop the twenty-first-century skills of creativity, critical thinking, collaboration, and communication, we practice art-making and interpret texts through the pre-texts methodology. Readings from Aristotle to Habermas raise questions and speculations on the effects of creative interruption on the political and social sphere. The final project is to design a collaborative-creative intervention for a political challenge. This course is a practical and urgent lesson in interdisciplinarity.

Spring 2021

Head Teaching Fellow

Higher Education: Students, Institutions and Controversies

Harvard College, Gen Ed

  • Manja Klemenčič, Lecturer on Sociology

 

Though we may think of universities and colleges as centers of learning and research, they too are subject of teaching and burgeoning research. This course explores contemporary higher education institutions and their students through a number of different perspectives and approaches. We identify major issues and controversies in higher education – how students learn, unequal access, the rise of corporate universities, changing funding models for higher education, politics of higher education, and more. We will read what leading scholars from the interdisciplinary field of higher education studies have written about these and other issues. Through personal reflection and insights from guest speakers from Harvard administration, we will look behind the scenes at Harvard student experiences. We will also seek to understand the workings of different types of higher education institutions, conducting field visits to universities and colleges in the Boston area. The centerpiece of this course is a capstone project that involves original research --theoretical or empirical or applied-- on a chosen higher education topic. The capstone research projects will be showcased on an online platform open to the Harvard community to inform and inspire practice and future research. This is an opportunity to gain perspectives on established and emerging areas of higher education research, insights into today’s changing higher education landscape, and the tools to address higher education issues. As student researchers you will develop agency to voice, critically examine and propose solutions to higher education issues you care about at Harvard and beyond.

Fall 2020

Teaching Fellow

Who Lives? Who Dies? Who Cares? Reimagining Global Health

Harvard Summer School, Gen Ed

  • Paul Farmer, Founding Director of Partners in Health and Professor of Global Health &Social Medicine

  • Arthur Kleinman, Professor of Medical Anthropology, of Psychiatry, and of Anthropology

  • Saalman Keshavjee, Professor of Global Health & Social Medicine, and Director of HMS Center for Global Health Delivery

  • Anne Becker, Dean for Clinical and Academic Affairs at HMS, and Professor of Global Health &Social Medicine

  • with Jason Silverstein

  • ​Guests: Gene Richardson, Joia Muhherkee, Gene Bukham, Sheila Davis, and Regan Marsh

 

If you are sick or hurt, whether you live or die depends not only on biological factors, but social ones: who you are and where you are, what sort of healthcare system is available to help you survive, and what kind of care is available to help you recover, if society believes you deserve it. The global coronavirus pandemic illustrates with dramatic urgency the role social forces play in patterning health inequities and determining individual fates. The vulnerabilities of those most likely to get sick and to die from Covid-19 stem from the ongoing effects of systemic racism on racialized subjects, the devaluation of eldercare and precarity of low-paid work under neoliberal forms of governance, and enduring material effects of colonial-era power structures that render health care systems dangerously weak or inaccessible for many communities. Now, as ever, it is imperative to develop frameworks and methodologies to identify and to intervene effectively in harmful social configurations that cause illness and suffering. Most medical research narrowly focuses on the biological basis of disease, but this course takes a novel biosocial approach to reveal how governments, institutions, and histories shape health and well-being, how poverty and racism get into someone’s lymph nodes, how cost-saving measures manifest as tuberculosis in someone’s lungs. In doing so, the course challenges conventional assumptions within the field of global health—examining how interventions influence what happens after a catastrophe in unexpected ways, how the persistence of health inequalities over centuries can be explained, how the structures of powerful institutions influence the policies they develop, how the poor deserve not only health care but high quality health care, and how caregiving and global health are urgent moral practices.

Spring 2020

Teaching Fellow

World Health: Challenges & Opportunities

Harvard College, Gen Ed

  • Sue Goldie, Professor of Public Health

Partners: Global Health Education and Learning Incubator

 

Extraordinary changes in the world present both risks and opportunities to health—unprecedented interconnections across borders, rapidly shifting global demographics, and changing patterns of diseases and injuries. This course will challenge your assumptions about the world’s populations as you discover surprising similarities and unexpected differences between and within countries. By first positioning the concept of health as a fundamental prerequisite for building strong societies, we will explore its connection to human rights, international relations, and sustainable development. Tackling a wide array of infectious diseases, noncommunicable diseases and injuries, we examine the influence of social, political, and environmental determinants on health, particularly transnational risks associated with globalization in an interdisciplinary way. We consider solutions from an array of perspectives, contributions from within and outside the health sector, and interventions at the local, national and global levels. By the end of the course, you will be equipped to thoughtfully analyze important health challenges and appreciate how evidence is contextualized and translated to policy and action. As a General Education course, the class will emphasize broad analytic and critical thinking skills, more than acquisition of facts and details. This course has no prerequisites aside from an open mind, curiosity about alternative perspectives, a willingness to self-reflect, and a commitment to “be present” and engage in lectures and sections – with the issues we will discuss, the material you will read, the products you will make, and the learning community we will create. The concepts and issues you will encounter in this class are relevant to the majority of important social, ethical, and technological challenges of our times. The skills you will develop – from data literacy and quantitative reasoning to critical thinking and policy analysis – will prepare you for problem solving in a globalized context and are relevant to many of the most salient societal challenges you will confront during and beyond your undergraduate experience.

Fall 2019

Head Teaching Fellow / Co-Designer

Politics, The Greatest Art

Harvard College, Gen Ed

  • Doris Sommer, Professor of Romance Languages and of African & African American Studies

Partner: The Institute of Politics at Harvard Kennedy School

Mentors: LaTosha Brown, Bob Cohn, and Deesha Dyer

Guests: Marcos Ramírez ERRE, Mark Gearan, Tarun Khanna, Isabel Saint Malo, and Pier Luigi Sacco

 

How does thinking like an artist educate judgment and ignite political change? We explore this question in collaboration with the Institute of Politics at Harvard  Kennedy School. Through guest lectures with national and international leaders, we update classic readings on the effects of creative interruption to reflect on the ethics of habit. Readings from Aristotle to Habermas will stimulate questions and speculations in written assignments. The final project is to design a collaborative creative intervention for an ethical/political challenge. An accompanying individual essay traces the development of this intervention with references to cases and readings covered in class. Students can pursue practical work while reflecting on general issues through an engaged learning option. This course will prepare you to recognize and to contribute to ethical political change through unconventional interventions broadly defined as art.

Spring 2019

Head Teaching Fellow / Co-Designer

The Art and Science of Making                                    

Harvard College, Engineering Sciences

  • David Edwards, Professor of the Practice of Bioengineering/Idea Translation

  • Robert Howe, Professor of Engineering

  • Doris Sommer, Professor of Romance Languages and of African & African American Studies

Gu​ests: Questlove, Tavares Strachan, Jody Adams, Mark Siegel, Alice Flaherty, Dennis Ausiello, Julio Ottino, and James Weaver

Partners: Applied Learning Labs at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering & Applied Sciences

 

This course teaches students how to make and think about things in the arts and sciences that promote public engagement. Students meet, make, learn and  reflect with leading makers across disciplines. Weekly maker studios give students lessons in making with tools that range from standard machine to sophisticated bioengineering tools. Students work in teams on semester-long maker projects they present at the end of the course. Each student submits questions each week on Canvas related to reading materials and writes a 3,000 word reflective essay on their maker project, with references to readings and to making throughout the semester. The collective projects presented to the public at the end of the course will be framed in a short “grant proposal” submitted in the middle of the semester that will be reviewed by the teaching staff before teams progress with final maker projects.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fall 2018

Teaching Fellow

Case Studies in Global Health: Biosocial Perspectives

Harvard College, Gen Ed

  • Paul Farmer, Founding Director of Partners in Health and Professor of Global Health and Social Medicine

  • Arthur Kleinman, Professor of Medical Anthropology, of Psychiatry, and of Anthropology

  • Saalman Keshavjee, Professor of Global Health & Social Medicine, and Director of HMS Center for Global Health Delivery

  • Anne Becker, Dean for Clinical and Academic Affairs at HMS, and Professor of Global Health & Social Medicine

  • with Jason Silverstein

​Guests: Gabriela Soto Laveaga, Emily Harrison, Gene Richardson, David Jones, and Kaia Stern

 

This interdisciplinary course is designed to introduce students to the field of global health. One among a number of courses discussing global health, it aims to frame global health's collection of problems and actions with a particular biosocial perspective. It first develops a toolkit of analytical approaches and then uses them to examine historical and contemporary global health initiatives with careful attention to a critical sociology of knowledge. The teaching team, made up of four practitioner-anthropologists, draws on experiences working in Asia, Africa, Eastern Europe, and the Americas, as well as an interdisciplinary body of literature, to investigate what the field of global health may include, how global health problems are defined and  constructed, and how global health interventions play out in expected and  unexpected ways. Aligned with the pedagogical goals of the Program in General Education, the course seeks to inspire and teach the following principles: Global awareness. This course aims to present a view of societies that enables students to recognize the role of distinctive traditions, governments, and histories in shaping health and well being. In addition, rather than framing a faceless mass of poor populations as the subject of global health initiatives, the course uses ethnographies and case studies to situate global health problems in relation to the lives of  individuals, families, and communities. Grounding in social and historical analysis. The course demonstrates the value of social theory and historical analysis in understanding health and illness at individual and societal levels, as well as in identifying problems and devising solutions. Ethical engagement. Throughout the course, students will be asked to critically evaluate the ethical frameworks that have underpinned historical and contemporary engagement in global health. Students will be pushed to consider the moral questions of inequality and suffering as well as to critically evaluate various ethical frameworks that motivate and structure attempts to redress these inequities. A sense of inspiration and possibility. While the overwhelming challenges of global health could all too easily engender cynicism, passivity, and helplessness, in examining what has made particular leaders and interventions successful (and others less so), students learn that no matter how complex the field of global health and no matter how steep the challenges, it is possible to design, implement, and foster programs and policies that make enormous positive change in the lives of the world’s poorest and suffering people.

Spring 2018

Head Teaching Fellow / Co-Developer

How to Create Things & Have Them Matter

Harvard College, Engineering Sciences

  • David Edwards, Professor of the Practice of Bioengineering/Idea Translation

  • with, Ken Ledeen and Jacques Vesery

Guests: Joshua Glenn, Andrew Witt, & Andrew Wolk

Partners: Cafe ArtScience and the Maine Center for Furniture Craftsmanship

 

This course teaches students to create things that lastingly matter. The course emphasizes exploratory life-long creating. Ideas (from biological engineering to fiction writing) begin in one place, and by sharing in special ways with others, change, and head to another place. The class emphasizes an aesthetic process of creating that transcends discipline. At the start of the semester students are invited to articulate dreams for change in any category — cultural, commercial, ecological, political, social. Students learn to express ideas, figure out paths to begin to develop them, and to raise resources along the way. Students also work together on a collective creator project. The project involves working with wood and wood artists and teaches students valuable lessons in creative collaboration and meditative career development. At the end of the semester students present their individual ideas, and collective woodwork, before a public dinner at Cafe ArtScience. Students have opportunities, funded by the Wyss Institute of Biologically Inspired Engineering, to continue over the summer working on projects started in the class with leading artists, designers, scientists and architects. Students spend a weekend off campus for the purpose of their collective woodwork project. Case study and conceptual readings will complement student idea exploration.

Fall 2017

Head Teaching Fellow / Co-Designer

Rx: Arts for Global Health

Harvard College, Gen Ed

  • Doris Sommer, Professor of Romance Languages, and of African & African American Studies

Guests: Lisa Wong, Jay Critchley, Mark Harrington, Sue GOldie, Gregg Gonsalves, Mercedes Becerra, Allan Brandt, Pier Luigi Sacco, Felton Earls, and Maya Carlson

Partners: Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

 

Technical remedies alone seldom address the complex challenges of global health. Fear or humiliation may interfere with diagnosis and available treatments. Stigma or ignorance of causes and cures can create escalating epidemics. So innovative health providers have learned to rely on creative interventions through the arts and, by extension, through creative education. This course considers the dynamic between health conditions and conditions for health, as well as responses to those conditions, both medical and non-medical. Resources for significant non-medical responses often come from cultural interventions, including traditional and contemporary arts. The interconnectedness of conditions and the far-reaching effects of creative responses are explored through cases of arts intervention in health care and through theories of why art works. What is therapeutic about making art and about thinking through the process? Readings and discussion engage a tradition of aesthetic philosophy that begins in the European Enlightenment to promote broad-based art-making as a response to conflict (Schiller) and to stimulate freedom of thought by starting with beauty (Kant). Surprising expectations and inviting us to think about the effects, “Rx: Arts for Global Health” offers basic training in the enlightened tradition of aesthetic judgment while it tracks some cases of arts that support global health. In lectures by instructors and guest speakers, the course considers how change and growth in global health can benefit from an aesthetic approach to technical and social challenges. Theoretical readings (Plato, Aristotle, Kant, Arendt, Schiller, Dewey, Freire, Gramsci, Rancière, Mockus, Boal, Nussbaum, inter alia) accompany concrete cases of treating malaria, tuberculosis, HIV, depression. The final project will be a “case study,” of a particular health challenge, including a proposal for a creative intervention.

 

Spring 2017

Teaching Fellow

Nutrition and Global Health

Harvard College, Gen Ed

  • Wafaie Fawzi, Professor of Population Sciences, and of Nutrition, Epidemiology, & Global Health

  • Christopher Duggan, Professor of Pediatrics, and of Nutrition & Global Health

 

This course introduces students to nutrition and global health problems through exploration of demographic, epidemiological, biological, and socioeconomic determinants of nutritional status. Emphasis will be placed on the role of nutritional status and dietary intake as a determinant and consequence of these health problems. Students will be encouraged to think critically about major challenges to improve nutrition and health at a global level. Aligned with the pedagogical goals of the Program in General Education, this course seeks to inspire and teach the following principles: Global awareness: To increase awareness of the current issues in nutrition and global health—with a focus on the role of nutrition in infectious diseases, maternal and child health, and chronic diseases—through critical evaluation of the scientific literature and exploration of demographic, epidemiological, biological, social, political, and economic determinants. Grounding in nutrition and research methods: To understand the basic principles of nutrition and role of nutrients in health in resource-poor and developed settings. To assess nutritional status of specific populations based on anthropometric, biochemical, and clinical measurements; to analyze the complex factors that affect the nutritional status of individuals and populations. Critical thinking: To critically review scientific literature on nutrition and global health topics, examine the role of nutritional factors and health outcomes, and identify strengths and weaknesses of studies. To discuss the latest findings in epidemiology on nutrition in the prevention and treatment of key infectious, perinatal, and chronic disease outcomes. Translation of research findings to improve nutrition and public health: To integrate nutritional evidence and consider practical issues in program design and implementation.

 

Fall 2016

Teaching Assistant

The Theories of Participatory Action Research

MIT School of Architecture + Planning

  • Dayna Cunningham, Founder & Director of the Community Innovators Lab (CoLab)

  • Katrin Kaeufer, Co-Founder & Director of the Presencing Institute

  • with Allison Coffey

Partners: Community Innovators Lab (CoLab)

 

The class introduces the theory of participatory action research (PAR) and more generally competing ideas about social inquiry and the uses of applied social science to promote social justice. The focus is on the epistemological foundations of action research, the ethics of knowledge generation, the role of the academic researcher and arguments for and against PAR as a scientific method. Some topics we will cover include: the merits of action research as a scientific enterprise.; the social construction of science; the relationship between knowledge, communication, and democracy;  commitments and ethical dilemmas in PAR a that arise when co-researchers interrogate social distance, meaning-making processes, and objectives; applications of various lenses in PAR processes, including feminist, race, critical, and youth PAR; the role of critical theory (e.g. race, feminism, etc.) and identity in PAR; the role of the individual scholar/practitioner’s theory of practice, mental models and intentions; the role of collaboration and collective action in PAR; the role of context in PAR as it relates to universalizing knowledge; the application of the principles and theories of PAR in practice; and arguments for and against case studies in action research and social science more generally. Students will be responsible for a presentation of a PAR case. Presenters will be expected to incorporate a participatory element to their presentation (embodiment, drawing, acting, etc.) and to engage the rest of the class in some form of reflection. There will be a required 10-page term paper exploring a critical PAR dilemma.

Spring 2016

Teaching Assistant

Survey Methods for Public Health

Boston University School of Public Health, Epidemiology

  • Thomas Mangione, Associate Professor of Epidemiology

 

The purpose of this course is to give students an introduction to survey research methods. The course will be taught at a pragmatic level so that students will leave the course with research skills. The course is particularly appropriate for students who expect to find themselves in jobs that may require them to conduct research, or to commission a research effort. It is also suitable for students who expect to be in jobs where they will be consumers of survey research data.

Fall 2015

Teaching Assistant

The Science of Human Nutrition

Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Nutrition

Clifford Lo (Nutrition)

This course provides an introduction to the field of nutrition and nutritional research from epidemiologic, clinical, metabolic, and global perspectives. Topics include assessment, metabolism, malnutrition, and the role of nutrition in communicable and non-communicable diseases. No previous scientific background is required. At the completion of the course, students will be able to: Explain the basic metabolism of vitamins and minerals; Describe the dietary intake, absorption, biochemical functions, metabolism, assessment, history and deficiency syndromes of micronutrients, including: B-complex vitamins, vitamins A, D, E, and K, iron, copper, calcium, folic acid, phosphorus, sodium, potassium, zinc, iodine, and selenium;  Describe the role of nutrition in the etiology of infectious and non-communicable diseases; Describe epidemiologic methods that are utilized to study nutrition and diseases; Synthesize data from biologic and epidemiologic studies within a given topic area in the field of nutrition, and concisely present the information; and Discuss current controversies in the field of nutrition.