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ASHLAND -- Though the Ashbrook Center has canceled its in-person events through the remainder of Ashland University's spring semester, its executive director Jeff Sikkenga has announced a continuation of its programming through a free webinar about the flu epidemic of 1918.

The webinar, called "The Flu Epidemic of 1918 – Lessons from History", is set for 1 p.m. Wednesday, March 25.

Sikkenga will lead the webinar alongside Dr. Jennifer Keene, professor at Chapman University and a member of Ashbrook’s national faculty.

Keene is an expert in American military experience during World War I, including the 1918 Flu Pandemic. She served as president of the Society of Military History from 2018 to 2019.

Keene has authored three books on WWI. These include: "Doughboys, the Great War and the Remaking of America," "World War I: The American Soldier Experience," and "The United States and the First World War." 

"We’re living through history. There has been a lot of speculation about what the coronavirus means for America and for our future as a country. One thing that is certain is that the grit and ingenuity of Americans will carry us through, as it always has," the Ashbrook Center said on its website. "While none of us has lived through anything like this before, it is not the first time our country has been struck by a pandemic. The 1918 Flu Pandemic infected approximately one-third of the world’s population and tragically killed 675,000 Americans.

"At Ashbrook, we believe that America’s history has a lot to teach us. I hope you will consider joining us as we discuss what caused the epidemic, its connection to WWI, how governments responded, how people responded and what effect the pandemic had on medicine, society, business and more." 

The webinar will be interactive and encourage audience questions.It is free, but registration is required. Sign up here

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