University of Rochester

Events across Campus, Community Mark World AIDS Day

November 17, 2006

To mark this year's World AIDS Day, a series of events exploring some of the major issues and challenges of the AIDS epidemic will be held at the University of Rochester.

Groups from the University of Rochester Medical Center and from the College of Arts, Science, and Engineering on River Campus will join members of the greater Rochester community in collaborative efforts to raise HIV and AIDS awareness. Participating groups include the HIV Vaccine Trials Unit at Strong Memorial Hospital, the River Campus Health Promotion Office, the Humanities Project at the University of Rochester, Hartnett Gallery, Global AIDS Interest Network (GAIN), the Action Front Center of Action for a Better Community (ABC), PeaceArt International, and AIDS Rochester Inc.

World AIDS Day was created in 1988 by the United Nations World Health Organization to raise awareness of HIV/AIDS as a global epidemic. Dr. Michael Keefer, principal investigator for the HIV Vaccine Trials Unit at the University of Rochester, noted, "This year's World AIDS Day marks the beginning of the first large-scale study of a preventive HIV vaccine on the African continent. It is a testament to the hundreds of healthy HIV-negative volunteers who have rolled up their sleeves to help and to the dedication of the Rochester community's collaborative efforts.

An exhibition reflecting changes in perceptions of AIDS will be on display in the Hartnett Gallery in Wilson Commons on the River Campus from Monday, Nov. 27, through Wednesday, Dec. 20. "Vision = Life: AIDS Posters from the Edward C. Atwater Collection" features selected posters from more than 29 countries that show different societies' understanding of sexuality and disease and raise questions about the politics of visibility. The posters are from the collection of Dr. Edward C. Atwater, a Western New York native who practiced medicine and taught at the University of Rochester Medical School for 37 years. An exhibition reception at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 29, in the Hartnett Gallery will feature Atwater and AA Bronson, a founding member of General Idea, an artists' collaborative which focused on AIDS-related projects for seven years. For more information, contact the gallery at (585) 275-4188.

Bronson will discuss the work of General Idea in an hour-long lecture at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 29, in the Gowen Room in Wilson Commons. He will speak about the seven-year-work of General Idea on AIDS-related projects and his own solo work since the deaths of his collaborators. Bronson is the current director of Printed Matter in New York City, a non-profit facility dedicated to the promotion of publications made by artists.

Other events include:

  • A panel discussion, "Let's Talk about HIV," at 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 30, in the Gowen Room in Wilson Commons. Featured panelists include Dr. Michael Keefer, principal investigator of the HIV Vaccine Trials Unit at the University of Rochester Medical Center, and Dr. Sharon Glezen of University Health Services. For more information, contact the HIV Vaccine Trials Unit at (585) 756-2329.
  • Free HIV testing, provided by AIDS Rochester and ABC, from noon to 2:30 p.m. Friday, Dec.1, on the Wilson Quadrangle and in Wilson Commons on the River Campus. For more information, contact River Campus Health Promotion Office at (585) 273-5775.
  • A PeaceArt International benefit for orphans at the CHES Ashram in Chennai, India. "Hope for All the Children" will feature children dancers and musicians from the Rochester Indian community, the Rochester Gay Men's Chorus, Rochester Women's Community Chorus, RIT/NTID Dance Company, and other groups at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 1, at the First Universalist Church, 150 S. Clinton Ave. Admission is $10 in advance, tickets available at Parkleigh, Outlandish Video & Gifts, and Equal Gound Cafe; and $12 at the door. For more information, contact (585) 288-2572.
  • University of Rochester Symphony Orchestra concert at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 2, in Strong Auditorium. Admission to the concert, which features music by Smetana and Sibelius, is free; student groups will be collecting donations to benefit AIDS efforts. For more information, contact (585) 275-2828.
  • A faith-based prayer gathering for all persons living with, or affected by HIV or AIDS, on Sunday, Dec. 3, at Third Presbyterian Church, 4 Meigs St.. For more information, contact (585) 271-7469.