Behrend Reacts: How should we react to the Ebola Epidemic?


By Nicole Krahe
Marketing Communication Student Assistant, Penn State Behrend


The Ebola epidemic currently sweeping through West African countries has proven to be the most devastating single outbreak of the disease in history.  Medical professionals say that the virus is unlikely to spread in countries with more advanced medical systems such as the United States, but authorities are still taking precautionary measures such as special training for health care workers and airport screenings.

With all of the current hype in the media, sometimes it is hard to decipher fact from fiction. We asked Behrend students how they think we should react to the Ebola epidemic.



Trey Loomis, sophomore, Mechanical Engineering, from Warren: “I’d say that people are overreacting.  We’ve been able to contain it so far and have dealt with similar things before. I don’t think that we should ban travel.”


Melissa Gess, first-year student, Chemical Engineering, from Pittsburgh: “I think the general population should be calmer about the situation. We are a wealthier country and should be able to handle it.”


Katelyn Pegher, junior, Psychology, from Dubois: “I feel like America has done a good job of containing it, or at least it seems like we have. I’m not concerned.”


Alex Herzing, sophomore, Interdisciplinary Business with Engineering Studies, from Saint Mary’s: “I don’t think we should be worried. Our medical system can handle it.”


Josh Holbert, first-year student, Mechanical Engineering, from Pittsburgh: “I don’t think we have much to worry about. I think that it’s mostly media hype. There have only been a few cases in the U.S and we seem to be containing it well.”


Trisha Hall, sophomore, Psychology, from Ohio: “I don’t think we should be too concerned. I do think the cases in the United States could have been prevented, but I’m sure our medical system will be able to control the virus.”


Will Cole, junior, Interdisciplinary Business with Engineering Studies, from Russel: “Given how great our country is and the amount of research done, it’s probably not that big of a deal. I think it’s just another thing for the media to exploit.”


Daniel Gross, first-year student, Biomedical Engineering, from Erie: “I don’t think that people should be panicking, running wild in the streets. It is something we should take seriously though.”


Behrend Reacts is a regular Thursday feature at the Behrend Blog that tries to get the campus pulse on a current topic, whether it’s serious or trivial. If you have a question to suggest for Behrend Reacts, please email Nicole Krahe at

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