Stephen Wooding, Ph.D.
University of California Merced
Health on a Rainforest Frontier 2020
The most compelling and effective way to learn about third world health challenges and solutions is through immersive experience, yet few international opportunities are available to students, especially undergraduates. To open these doors, the Wooding lab partners with Project Amazonas to offer an intensive research workshop on location in Perú titled Health on a Rainforest Frontier. Based in the bustling Amazon port of Iquitos, Health on a Rainforest Frontier takes on the complex health threats faced by populations living at the interface between city and forest. The course explores balances between traditional and western medicine, emerging access to health care, and other keys to wellbeing at the jungle’s edge. After an experiential introduction to the city and week long investigation of urban issues, we undertake a week long journey aboard Project Amazonas' medical service vessel, La Esperanza, tracing remote tributaries to visit isolated mestizo and indigenous communities. Along the way, students gain insight into the lives of Amazonian peoples, the challenges they face, and their hopes for the future.