Salk Symposia

While most known for polio vaccine development, Jonas Salk's broader commitments to a sustainable human future were major topics of his later writings on the environment, the economy, global health, the meaning of health, and the human dimension of creating constructive change. The Jonas Salk Symposia, hosted by Pitt Public Health, honor him by bringing together speakers from diverse disciplines to discuss the continuing importance of one such theme each year. Recent, upcoming, and proposed symposia topics include:

Salk Legacy Stories

Q&A: Peter Salk on the Lessons Learned from Vaccine Development History 

Q&A: Peter Salk on the Lessons Learned from Vaccine Development History

Peter Salk was 11 years old when a University of Pittsburgh team led by his father, the late Jonas Salk, created the inactivated poliovirus vaccine. The day of the 1955 announcement that the vaccine was safe, effective and potent, “everything just went crazy,” he recalls. “There were so many calls ... (11/17/2020)
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Jonas Salk’s son sees hope in COVID-19 efforts, still pushing for polio eradication 

Jonas Salk’s son sees hope in COVID-19 efforts, still pushing for polio eradication

PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE - Peter Salk, IDM faculty and director of The Jonas Salk Legacy Foundation, worries that "the [polio] eradication program is going to take a hit from some of the coronavirus efforts, because of the focus [in funding and research] on the coronavirus.” But he's happy that team... (04/12/2020)
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Life Before Childhood Vaccines 

Life Before Childhood Vaccines

PITT MEDCAST - In this episode, hear from people who grew up in the shadow of a crippling disease - amog them "polio pioneers," schoolkids from the clinical trials of Jonas Salk's killed-virus vaccine. Their accounts tell the stor of how ordinary people helped win the struggle against one of the mo... (01/03/2020)
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EPI graduate shares her experience of overcoming polio (video) 

EPI graduate shares her experience of overcoming polio (video)

CONSULATE GENERAL OF INDIA IN NEW YORK -- In observance of the United Nations International Day of Persons with Disability, Sunita Dodani (EPI ’06) shares her story of overcoming polio and thriving in life. After experiencing paralysis in all four limbs, Dodani met the challenges of growing up as a... (01/03/2019)
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Celebrate 70: The Salk legacy (video) 

Celebrate 70: The Salk legacy (video)

“[Jonas Salk] had no idea what was going to come out of this experiment. He was just terrified that it wasn’t going to turn out to work, but it did,” said Peter Salk of his father's early tests of the first polio vaccines. Jonas Salk developed the first successful polio vaccine while working at Pit... (04/18/2018)
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Iron lung used to treat polio patients displayed at Pitt Public Health 

Iron lung used to treat polio patients displayed at Pitt Public Health

PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW - An iron lung machine will be on display at Pitt Public Health to honor polio pioneer Dr. Jonas Salk, who created the polio vaccine in 1955. The vaccine, tested in Pittsburgh school children, is considered one of medicine's most significant medical breakthroughs. “It's a ... (04/11/2018)


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