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USciences Class Tackles Power, Democracy, and Oppression in the U.S.

By Nicole Carrera

Published on August 13, 2020

A course offered in the USciences Department of Humanities offers students a chance to examine the history of minority populations in the United States, racism and their oppressors. Power Democracy and Oppression (MD 213) is offered to provide students a space to learn about the experiences of diverse populations so that they might become global citizens. 

In a time where the Black Lives Matter movement has preached for education around the history of minorities in America, the course gives a chance for students and future healthcare leaders to more closely examine these issues and how it might impact their careers and future patients. 

“This class is especially valuable in the current political climate,” said Anne Marie Flanagan, PhD, who is an instructor for the course.

Martin Carrion, MPP, PhD, who created the online section of the course, emphasizes the need for students to be exposed to new populations and experiences during their education. 

One thing that USciences aims to do is to not only educate our students, but to make them global citizens...

-- Dr. Martin Carrion

“One thing that USciences aims to do is to not only educate our students, but to make them global citizens who can understand people and interact not just at the local level, but internationally.” Dr. Carrion explains. 

Dr. Carrion begins the coursework ensuring that each student in the class has the same baseline knowledge of the United States government and history of democracy. “Before we can even get to social justice, it is important to learn the history and be confronted with the facts of democracy, and how it is still becoming an all encompassing democracy [in the United States].”

Further examination of the balances of power and history of oppression in the country gives USciences students the skills necessary to move forward in their careers and effectively interact with patients of many different backgrounds. 

Former USciences student Tyler Primrose highly recommends all students take a class that focuses on these topics. “Not one course or class in my life has taught me more about the world we live in. Primrose shares. “It was a great eye opener for how we act as a society and how the past heavily influences our actions and choices.”

“I think students entering healthcare professions can examine their own approach to their professions and to their patients in light of these core principles” Dr. Flanagan shares. “And, perhaps, become advocates for the rights of their patients.”

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