16:03 PM

Making The Connection Between Environmental Changes & Human Health

Department of History, Humanities & Languages Hosts Virtual Talk April 26


By Sheryl E. Taylor

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency website states: “Human health can be influenced by many factors, including exposure to physical, chemical, biological, and radiological contaminants in the environment. Protecting human health from environmental contaminants is integral to EPA’s mission.”

For its upcoming discussion, the College of Humanities & Social Sciences’ Department of History, Humanities & Languages is hosting "Environment and Health: Data, Passion and The Conversation Forward” 3 – 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 26.

This presentation will feature UHD’s very own Dr. Lisa Morano, Director of the Center for Urban Agriculture & Sustainability and Professor of Biology and Microbiology in the Department of Natural Sciences. Murano will review the environmental challenges humanity is facing and make the connections between those changes and human health. Historical and modern examples will be explored of how the dr-moranohumanities and sciences can work together to foster passion and create spaces for conversation and change.

Why this is an important topic? “It has become very evident that there is a great demand to understand better how ecology affects health,” said Dr. Edmund Cueva, Professor of Classics & Humanities. “Participants will become aware of how important the relationships are between ecology, sustainability, and medical humanities. It is hoped that a greater understanding of the ecology of health, disease, and nature will help tackle better the immense challenges posed by climate change and the ever-present threat of another pandemic.”

Cueva also mentioned a recent study, “On the Need for an Ecologically Dimensioned Medical Humanities,” by Dr. Jonathan Coope, who notes that “climate change has altered how we prevent future pandemics.” Coope also writes that we “may require a radical reassessment of modernity’s relationship with the natural world.”

“Maintaining healthy ecosystems is critical for both current and future human health,” emphasized Morano. “Despite a mountain of scientific data telling us the importance of this, people are not particularly moved by data. In addition to reviewing the connections between environmental health and human health, this presentation will explore the role of humanities (and other disciplines) in helping make change. Collaboration across disciplines will be the most effective way to face our future’s most serious environmental and related human health challenges.”

To attend the virtual event via Zoom:

Zoom Meeting Link
Zoom Meeting ID: 669 193 7441
Passcode: MEDHUM

Photo: Pixaby/Pexels

About the University of Houston-Downtown

The University of Houston-Downtown (UHD) is the second-largest university in Houston and has served the educational needs of the nation’s fourth-largest city since 1974. As one of four distinct public universities in the University of Houston System, UHD is a comprehensive, four-year university led by President Loren J. Blanchard. Annually, UHD educates approximately 14,000 students, boasts more than 66,000 alumni, and offers 45 bachelor’s degrees, 12 master’s degrees, and 19 online programs within four colleges: Marilyn Davies College of Business, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, College of Public Service, and College of Sciences and Technology. UHD has one of the lowest tuition rates in Texas.

U.S. News and World Report ranked UHD among the nation’s Best Online Bachelor’s Programs for Applied Administration and Best Online Master’s Programs in Criminal Justice, as well as a Top Performer in Social Mobility. The Wall Street Journal/College Pulse ranked UHD one of the best colleges in the U.S. for its 2024 rankings, with notable distinctions: No. 1 for diversity (tied) and No. 3 for student experience. The University is designated as a Hispanic-Serving Institution, a Minority-Serving Institution, and a Military Friendly School. For more information on the University of Houston-Downtown, visit uhd.edu.