When I checked Dr. Vincent Racaniello's virology blog a moment ago, I found this post: Earth’s virology professor. Click through for the full post, some links, and a photo. Excerpt:
Nearly four months ago I stood at the front of a crowded classroom at Columbia University and began teaching the third year of my undergraduate virology course. Twice a week we discussed the basic principles of virology, including how virions are built, how they replicate, and how they cause disease.
Yesterday was the 26th and last lecture in the course, entitled “H5N1″. In this lecture we covered the recent controversy over the publication of results on adapting avian influenza H5N1 viruses to transmit by the airborne route among ferrets. Fittingly, one of the two papers in question will be published tomorrow.
Each lecture in my virology course has been recorded as a videocast and is available at the course website, at iTunes University, or on Vimeo. Eighty-seven Columbia University undergraduates registered for the course in 2012, but over 14,000 individuals have subscribed to virology W3310 through iTunes University.
I believe that it is important that the general public understand as much as possible about viruses, so they can participate in the debate about issues that impact them, such as XMRV or H5N1. It is my goal to be Earth’s virology professor.
Seeing the photo of Dr. Racaniello's students, I felt a pang of mixed nostalgia and envy: It's been 50 years since I was last in a Columbia classroom, and four since I retired from teaching. The photo, and Dr. Racaniello's evident love of what he's doing, make me wish I were back in the business.