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An In-depth (and timely) Study of the History of Vaccines

Vaccines are named as such because the first modern vaccine used cowpox to inoculate people from smallpox. The name comes from “vacca,” which means cow in the Latin language. Eric O’Connor’s 10th-grade World History 2 class studied this fact and more, as they discussed the legacy of Christopher Columbus. “We watched a video that put Columbus ‘on trial’ and discussed why some celebrate him and some vilify him,” said O’Connor of the divisive holiday that falls in mid-October. “We also looked at the mass death of American Indians during the 1500s after the Europeans arrived in the Americas. That led to a discussion about the impact of COVID-19 in our society and our current hope for vaccines to once again save us from widespread disease.”