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Faculty Mentor

Simara Price and Kelly Sorensen


The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted all Americans in varying ways, but it has hit the American Black population particularly hard. It also impacts immunocompromised individuals, especially those with conditions that involve damage to or hindering of the cardiovascular or respiratory systems. I found myself asking several questions – how much did this affect individuals who suffer from such conditions, especially those who are Black Americans; how much does systemic racism play in the current pandemic; what could be done about all this; and so on. Since I myself have lived with type I diabetes for almost two decades at the time of writing, I am intimately familiar with the lifestyle one must undertake as a type I diabetic, the long-term impacts of the disease, and how that is perceived by myself and others. This research attempts to answer these questions as well as to determine what justice can be enacted and in what ways. The death and infection data relating to the COVID-19 pandemic comes from the COVID-19 Racial Data Tracker. My research examines other data, including recent papers on the COVID-19 pandemic, and papers over the last decades about how socioeconomic status correlates to health status. As to what can be done, I recommend that we turn food deserts into food oases as a population-wide intervention that would improve the average health of communities trapped in food deserts.


Presented during the 22nd Annual Summer Fellows Symposium, July 24, 2020 at Ursinus College.

The downloadable file is a slide presentation with audio commentary in mp4 format. The run time of the presentation is 10:46.

The final project is available here.

Open Access

Available to all.