THURSDAY, 07/29/2021 | 5:30PM EST

Foreign Affairs


Future Leaders

Containing Deadly Pathogens: The Risks of Research Lab Proliferation


Thursday July 29th, 2021 at 5:30pm EST

Hosted on Zoom - the link and optional background materials will be emailed to you after registration


According to the CDC, more than 70% of the world remains underprepared to prevent, detect, and respond to a public health emergency. Similarly, the Global Health Security Index found that international preparedness for epidemics and pandemics remains very weak. This was made evident by the global chaos imposed by the coronavirus pandemic. There are more biological threats, however, than just viruses. Risks also include bacterias and toxins that can disable or kill humans, plants, and animals. In this event, we will be speaking with Joseph Rodgers and Minh Ly on their insights into global health security and their research on the proliferation of research labs that work on the world’s deadliest pathogens.

Foreign Affairs with Future Leaders is a series of youth-led discussions which analyze various international issues and topics by collaboratively addressing their most critical questions. They are co-hosted by the Onero Institute, the Delta Phi Epsilon Professional Foreign Service Fraternity and Sorority at GWU, the Women In International Security GW Student Branch, and the School for Ethics and Global Leadership.


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Joseph Rodgers is a program manager with the Project on Nuclear Issues in the International Security Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). He is also a Ph.D. student in the Biodefense Program at George Mason University. Previously, he worked as a graduate research assistant at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies and interned with the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research. Joseph holds an M.A. in nonproliferation and terrorism from the Middlebury Institute for International Studies.

Minh Ly is a recent MS graduate in BioDefense from George Mason, with a BS in Biology from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. With 4 years of experience working in a laboratory, he hopes to start a new career in biosecurity and biosafety.

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Jared Tucker is a public health consultant at Guidehouse where he supports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). He holds a BA in International Affairs and Global Public Health from George Washington University. Previously, he worked as an intern in the Office of International Health and Biodefense at the U.S. Department of State, as well as in the Global Development Lab at the U.S. Agency for International Development. Prior to COVID-19, Jared had been studying African political and health security in Senegal as a David L. Boren Scholar. Additionally, he is working on his fluency in French, Arabic, and Wolof.

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