Simulation includes special guests amongst the 200 plus students
SARASOTA — June 2st, 2017 — Sarasota Military Academy Prep (SMAP) has pioneered the ultimate experiential STEM project that immerses the students in a real world scenario through a campus wide infectious disease outbreak. The outbreak is student driven, involving 200 students that ‘live’ the project as they will have to detect, contain, and solve the crisis before the student body succumbs to the fatal disease. The student body is broken into the following groups: Government, Military, Triage Doctors, Epidemiologists, Media, and General Population. The scenario will mimic the historical and contemporary spread of an infectious disease in which the various groups will have to work together against the clock to stop the contagion before it kills the general population of the school campus.
Special Guests in Attendance
During the outbreak, SMAP welcomed special guests to take part. These guests included Dr. Pardis Sabeti, one of Time’s People of the Year and Most Influential People in the World as well as Harvard Professor and Computational Geneticist of Sabeti Lab, Tamara Robertson, a cellular Biologist who appeared on Science Channel’s Mythbusters the Search and was recently featured in the Marvel Universe as part of Genius In Action Research Labs (G.I.R.L.) in Unstoppable Wasp #5, and lastly, Dr. Tracy Fanara, an environmental scientist at Mote Marine, and also appeared on Mythbusters the Search as well as featured in the Marvel Universe as part of Genius In Action Research Labs (G.I.R.L.) in Unstoppable Wasp #5.
- Pardis Sabeti had this to say: The Sarasota Military Prep Academy Outbreak Simulation is the very best of civic engagement and education. They are taking a potential real-world scenario that would be frightening and chaotic, and guiding the students on how to respond through coordination and community, and teaching them science and public health in the process. It is so creative and thoughtful in its implementation, and is a model that should be rolled out far and wide.
- Tamara Robertson: Scientific studies have shown time and time again that exposing people at a young age to different ideas, career paths, and overall life opportunities broadens the horizon of who they think they can be. The Outbreak exposes them to the multi-faceted structures of the government, the military, the health care system, vaccine manufacturing etc and in doing so may open their futures to a career path they otherwise may have never seen. The students get a trial run of what it’s like to hold these titles in one of the hardest situations these career employees may face while also learning about epidemiology in a really exciting way.