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Dr. Salk

This week in history we remember a very famous doctor named Dr. Jonas Salk. Dr. Salk is famous because he made a vaccine to stop the disease of polio. Dr. Salk made the medicine and vaccine to stop polio in the 1940’s and from 1954 many people were getting injections to stop polio. Millions of people are healthy today because of this work.

Polio was a very dangerous disease for many people. Polio attacks children first and it does damage to nerves in the body. Kids who get polio usually cannot walk very well, and there is a lot of damage to muscles all over the body.

Dr. Salk started to work on the polio medicine in the 1940’s but it took many years of hard work to find a way to stop the disease. He had a lot of trouble and a lot of failure, but he did not stop doing his work. He continued to push forward and to move forward. He believed in his research and in his work and would not stop. We learned that Dr. Salk was working sixteen hours every day, seven days a week, for over two years to find the cure to polio.

From Dr. Salk, we have two very important lessons to remember. The first lesson is that the study of science is very important for us. Science opens many doors for us, and teaches us a lot about our universe, our world, our land, our bodies, and how all things connect. Science is very important to always study. If you are 14 years old, 24 years old, 34 years old, or even older, we need to always study science.

The second lesson we must remember from Dr. Salk is that we must never stop our work moving forward. Many big projects and big jobs come to us in our lives, so we must always keep working hard. Your job as students of Otemae is to take many classes, to study very hard, to practice hard in your club activities, and to do well on your tests. It is a very big job, but you must do it every day. Dr. Salk worked sixteen hours a day, and that is a lot.

Maybe you cannot study sixteen hours a day, but you need to put your energy into your school studies and continue to push forward. Each day is not easy, but all the days together here at Otemae will make you highly educated, and ready for your next stage in life.

Polio is not the only disease that science has stopped. There are more. They have some strange names, but many of these diseases are very dangerous. The diseases that science and hard working scientists have stopped are long, and more will be added to the list.

Every year we must get an injection for influenza. It is a kind of vaccine to keep us healthy. And when you were a baby you got many vaccines too. These vaccines help to keep you healthy. Many diseases that were very dangerous before are gone. Science is wonderful.

The greatest thing about Dr. Salk that I really respect is that he believed that his work is important to help and support society. This point is something we should think about. Of course, sometimes it is difficult to think about a job we might have in the future, but if we could do some job, or find some way, to help and support and serve our society, that would be wonderful too.