Ayat Abourashed


Track: 7, Citizens and surveillance with focus on high schools


Eric van Gorp (EMC)

Primary Supervisor

Frederic Bartumeus (CEAB-CSIC)


Arnold van Villet (WUR); Henk van der Jeugd (NIOO


Erasmus University Medical Centre


Description PhD project

I’m a 25-year old American-Egyptian who’s always travelling. In my spare time, I love cooking with and for friends, scuba diving, exercising and film photography.

I have always thought as myself as a teacher: I taught university-level Biology for two years and then moved to Indonesia to teach English. In Indonesia, I enjoyed creating educational strategies in low-resource high schools, but I also gained a newfound curiosity for global health and appreciation for the environment and wildlife. This led me to complete an Erasmus Mundus Joint Master of Science in Infectious Diseases and One Health all over Europe and work at Centre for Epidemiological Studies on Infections for Sexual Transmission and AIDS in Catalonia to study HIV-associated coinfections in hospitalized HIV patients across Spain.

As an advocate for health education, I applied for this PhD so that I could combine my teaching background with disease surveillance using a One Health framework. For this project, I hope to make science a language accessible to youth to actively involve and excite younger generations and make them a crucial community within the scientific sphere to help prevent disease spread. I also plan to create models to visualize the risk of arbovirus emergence using citizen surveillance and help educators design curriculums that implement applied surveillance and epidemiology. Hopefully, by the end of my PhD, I will not only inspire a new generation of scientists, but learn how to ride a bike as well!

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One Health PACT with project number 109986 is (partly) financed by the Dutch Research Council (NWO).