By Billy Tsang
Billy is one of AIDemocracy’s 2010-2011 Issue Analysts. Find out more about Billy below or take a look at the Student Issue Analysts.

A quandary in advocacy today is that many young people do not relate to HIV/AIDS nor diseases prominent in underdeveloped nations such as malaria and tuberculosis. People know more about the diseases that matter to them. In past several decades public health initiatives and improved quality of life have reduced once widespread cases of HIV/AIDS in the U.S. HIV/AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis are now considered minority related diseases particularly linked with poverty with devastating consequences in underdeveloped nations. Meanwhile, good access to healthcare in our nation allows our society to better manage HIV/AIDS cases and virtually avoid malaria and tuberculosis.

HIV/AIDS,malaria and tuberculosis are major issues targeted in the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) that aim to halt the spread of global disease epidemics by 2015. With MDG summit taking place from September 20th – 22nd, it is becoming even more important that students take active roles in advocating and educating their peers about the MDGs.

An inspiring aspect of students is their capacity to be empowered by knowledge to take action. Students nationwide have hosted AIDS benefits and awareness rallies. In New York, students have banded together with their families,
teachers, and peers to join in annual AIDS Walks. Youth can be great leaders so long as they are equipped with knowledge. A major role young people can play today is to continue expanding and increasing their actions that promote awareness and understanding of global diseases.

William Tsang is a Psychology and Cognitive Science double major at Rutgers University in New Jersey. In recent years, he has had the opportunity to learn about HIV/AIDS in both academic and humanitarian arenas. He is excited to be an issue analyst for HIV/AIDS  and to work with AIDemocracy to empower students who can make a difference.  You readers out there are encouraged to send him an email for any questions, but be sure to call him Billy!