ATS News Articles

HomeATS News Articles ▶ Taking the ATS to School
Taking the ATS to School

The American Thoracic Society is committed to its global work. For example, celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2019, is the ATS Methods in Epidemiologic, Clinical, and Operations Research (MECOR) Program.

Other global priorities for the ATS include publishing research and clinical practice guidelines for elimination of lung disease worldwide, and advocating for U.S. and international funding for TB control as well as related research and development projects. During the United Nations General Assembly this year, the ATS participated in the first United Nations General Assembly’s (UNGA) first High-Level Meeting on Tuberculosis.

Recently, however, the ATS made an impact overseas in an entirely different way, affecting future clinicians and researchers at an even younger age – elementary school students!

When the ATS returned from the ATS International Conference in Washington, D.C. in 2017, then-staffer Oluwatoyin Akinyemi, who goes by Toyin, saw about 70 leftover ATS conference bags with a sign that said, ‘Free: please take.’

“After a few days, no one had taken the bags,” Toyin recalls. “I volunteered to take them.”

Toyin had always wanted to host a charity event, and she and her mom decided that the bags would be perfect for holding school supplies. They held a donation drive, and then took the bags to Lagos, Nigeria, to the elementary school Toyin’s father had attended, and gave them to the students in his honor.

 “The kids were really appreciative,” said Toyin, “and because we delivered them during the first week of school, I think it got the school year off to a good start.”

Toyin hopes to continue such drives in the future, and is currently working on a project to deliver sustainable hygiene products to people in Brazil.

Join us at ATS 2019 in Dallas to get your own ATS conference bag!