Yesterday I had a growth moment. Today I had a “fangirl” moment. 

The first order of business for the day was a short lecture from patron and cofounder of Equality Trust, Richard Wilkinson. Richard Wilkinson retired in 2008 but continues to be very active with consultations and speaking engagements. His research on health disparities and social determinants of health contributed greatly to the income inequality discussion worldwide.

I’m not sure the students truly understand who he is and that’s OK. Most of his work is a little before their time. I have one of his TEDTalks embedded in my Community Health Nursing class, and it will remain there until it is no longer relevant, which will be in approximately 1000 years. Click HERE to see it. If you’re interested in reading his works, click HERE to be directed to a list of his books. The reason why I am such a “fan,” is because people like Mr. Wilkinson help to prove what many of us (prior to going off to college) don’t even think of studying. 

We all know money matters. Social epidemiologists help us understand the why’s and how’s and that’s really important because it helps develop a much deeper understanding of the true nature of social mobility and immobility.

After learning about how income inequality affects the health of citizens (by the way, it should come as no surprise that America has the highest income inequality of the OECD countries), a small group headed to Brighton. 

Dr. Good and I wanted to do an out-trip from London to see life outside of the capital city and speak to someone from social services there, but our initial contacts fell through. I still wanted to venture out of the city for a day, and a few students opted to come with me. I’m so glad they did. Mikaela found this most excellent spot for lunch and it was the best fish-n-chips I’ve ever had – BY FAR. The gentleman we talked to in line stated he’s been all over the states and our fish n chips are rubbish – haha! After tasting this, I only slightly disagree – he’s never been to Twin Lakes, OH 😉

We also had a great time with the lad taking our order. 

He’s from Northern Ireland and bonded with our black squirrel. 

Then we headed down to the Brighton Pier, a mini Cedar Point. What I loved while there was that even though it was pretty cold, there were quite a few visitors (although, not in this photo). You can tell the pier and beach are loved.

There was one other attraction I wanted to visit prior to leaving Brighton, and that was the Royal Pavilion and Garden. To give a little history, this is the only former English royal residence; in other words, the only one that the family no longer owns. However, the primary reason I wanted to visit was that it was a hospital for wounded Indian soldiers in WWI. 

Crown copyright material is reproduced with the permission of the Controller of HMSO and the Queen’s Printer for Scotland

Alas, this proved to be a bit of a propaganda scheme to drum up support for the war, but this effort led to the space being used for limbless men to convalesce. 

Crown copyright material is reproduced with the permission of the Controller of HMSO and the Queen’s Printer for Scotland

Some takeaways for the day for me personally: 

The students noted how diverse London is. Only a short train ride away and the landscape is completely stripped of that diversity. While London has an approximately 50% (including what they call “British white” and “white other”), Brighton is 85.5% white. And honestly, this makes sense to me. 

The other takeaway – dress REALLY warm if you’re headed to the UK side of the Atlantic Ocean in March.