Commemorating the classes of the pandemic

A photo of a piece of art depicting a woman in cap and gown wearing a mask being viewed through a computer monitor screen which she is holding

Dr. Tim Lash, O. Wayne Rollins Distinguished Professor and chair of the Department of Epidemiology, wanted to honor what he thought would be the only class to ever graduate during a global pandemic, so he commissioned a student art contest. But when it became clear COVID-19 was going to impact the 2020–2021 class as well, the plan was revised with the help of Dr. Jodie Guest, professor and vice chair of epidemiology. The pair selected an outstanding submission by Grace Fletcher 20MPH from the original competition and used that image as the centerpiece of a piece of plexiglass art that Guest designed. Names of epidemiology students from the classes of 2019–2020 and 2020–2021 float around the image forming a matte, and a quote from Dr. Anthony Fauci’s Emory Commencement address adorns the bottom. The artwork is hung just inside the department’s main entrance, and Fletcher’s original painting hangs in Lash’s office.