I chose to conduct an online chat with an OSU librarian. I told them about my topic, which is on Dr. Betty Harris. I told her about the few resources I found and also that most of the information I have found so far is very generic. There is not very much information on the explosives identifying device that she invented. She encouraged me to check out the library resources and conduct a search on OSU’s online database of articles., which didn’t yield many results.
After doing a search on the library website I still having no luck in finding a very solid article, the librarian suggested that I narrow my research down and focus on different aspects of Harris’s life. I decided to focus on the cultural aspects of Betty Harris’s life after finding out that the colleges she went to were all black schools. She suggested that I try to find research based on the cultural barriers that Harris faced, so I have set out to explore this. I have found this to be the most helpful. Although I am still fairly early in my research, I have found some helpful articles!
Cultural Research Project: Patricia Bath was born in 1942 in New York amidst a brutal and racist time for African Americans in our history. Despite cultural barriers, she accomplished many things even before she graduated high school. At the age of 16 she was already working in a cancer research center. She excelled in school and had a love for science (she even became the editor of the high school science paper). Among many other accomplishments, she came up with an equation to mathematically predict cancer growth. After college Bath became a doctor and was the first black resident in Ophthalmology. After her residency she began to work at the University of California as an assistant professor of surgery and ophthalmology. After discovering an alarming rate of blindness in African Americans, she founded the American Institute for the Prevention of Blindness (AIPB). Then, in 1981 she invented a surgical device that would change the lives of many, the Laserphaco Probe. The Laserphaco Probe was able to remove cataracts from patients’ eyes by using a 1 mm probe to enter one’s eye and use laser to break up the cataract. It had a secondary tube that was used as suction to actually remove the cataract. Her invention revolutionized the way these surgeries were performed and changed many lives. She continues to fight blindness and reports that “The ability to restore sight is the ultimate reward”. __________________________________________________________________________________________________