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For Minnesota and the world

When a pandemic strikes, researchers strive to understand it and help us live through it

Since the coronavirus pandemic began in early 2020, it’s hard to imagine life without face masks, strictly outdoor dining, and virtual happy hours. Yet, questions still remain. Are we effectively maximizing the safety of our frontline workers? Is six feet always enough? How dangerous are indoor restaurants?

Scientific knowledge about the disease known as COVID-19 continues to evolve—and faculty from the College of Science and Engineering have evolved with it. From addressing personal protective equipment (PPE) shortages and safety regulations to grappling with a rapidly emerging mental health epidemic, CSE researchers are helping society to not only understand COVID-19 but to live with it.

Read how CSE faculty members Jiarong Hong and Suo Yang are studying aerosol spread indoors and how their work is helping the Minnesota Orchestra mitigate risk in "The Air We Breathe—Inventing Tomorrow, Winter 2021."

Learn how CSE's Evan Suma Rosenberg is using virtual reality to make video conference more meaningful and interactive—much like real life—in "Avatars to the Rescue—Inventing Tomorrow, Winter 2021."

Find out how CSE experts in the University of Minnesota’s Institute of Engineering in Medicine assembled teams to address COVID-related needs in the medical community in "Swift Response—Inventing Tomorrow, Winter 2021."

By Olivia Hultgren

To see all three stories as they appeared in our Winter 2021 college magazine, see