Merrill Scholar: Dr. Donald Hopkins

You are here

Dr. Donald Hopkins, Vienna '60-'61

A graduate of Morehouse College and our 1960-61 Vienna program, Dr. Hopkins has for the last 25 years worked at the Carter Center. The Carter Center’s mission is to wage peace, fight disease, and build hope in developing countries. Dr. Hopkins has to gone great lengths in Africa to help eradicate the crippling Guinea worm disease, a cause he has pursued since working as the Deputy Director of the Center for Disease Control. There is good news: Dr. Hopkins estimates they are very close to eliminating Guinea worm disease entirely.

Dr. Hopkins says his study-abroad experience was a major influence in his career. “In Vienna, I was able to get immersed in music, history, art, and architecture. The typical pre-med student doesn’t have these opportunities,” he explains.

“Also, I had a very important experience [while studying abroad] when I took a side trip to Egypt. I was looking at monuments and saw people with flies around their eyes. I now know this is trachoma and it’s something I’m working on at the Carter Center. That encounter really impacted me and I knew I wanted to focus on helping these people.”

To Mr. Merrill, Dr. Hopkins says, “What I owe you is beyond words. Thank you and God bless you and your family.”