As one of several pilot projects for the Engaged Ethics Initiative’s undergraduate education mission (which is currently being spearheaded by KIE Director Maggie Little), Georgetown University students Meghan O’Hearn (2012), Meghan O’Reilly (2013), and Joseph Mekhail (2013) have the unique opportunity to conduct an independent research project on diarrheal disease in Calcutta (Kolkata), India. Through individual interviews with healthcare providers and focus groups with local caretakers, the student research team will document caretakers’ perceptions of and responses to diarrheal disease transmission and treatment. The goal of the project is to determine successful strategies for mitigating the effects of diarrheal disease in Calcutta.
The team will be in India for two weeks — March 29th through April 12th — for the interview phase of the research project. They will be working closely with Calcutta Kids, a maternal and child health organization in the city under the directorship of Noah Levinson. Currently, the team is in the process of networking with healthcare providers in Calcutta, specifically public health officials and local health-related NGOs (such as the Hope Foundation).