ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Dr. Bowe's Death Class, Death 101

Updated on March 8, 2014
Students opening up a cadaver
Students opening up a cadaver

Death. It happens to all of us. Rich, poor and in-between. You cannot take fame or fortune with you to the grave when your time on earth is over. Most young people have this reality tucked way in the back of their psyche- they know that the young can die, happens all the time. But, still, it is not really going to happen to them and they really do not worry about it until well into their 30's. I recall thinking that death happens to old people and it is uncommon for the young to die first. Youth gives the illusion of being invincible, virile and robust. Yet, in a second of texting while driving it ends like a light switch.

At Kean University, one popular class is Death in Perspective, or Death 101, taught by Dr.Norma Bowe. Students actually like it so much for its "reality" there is a long waiting list to get in. Students like it because it opens up the dialogue about death that those in their 20's know can happen but disbelieve it in the same thought. Students in the class are required to write goodbye letters to loved ones and compose their own eulogies and wills. They visit prisons to meet murderers, go to hospice to see what the end of life looks like, we mean, the end is weeks away at best. They watch a crematory do their scorching work, very nitty gritty stuff. They go to funeral homes to pick out their coffins. Heavy stuff for the 20's age group.

But worse, the class examines three corpses, naked cadavers on metal tables just like in medical school, but these students are not planning to be doctors. They review their history as to how they died, their physical damage that killed them-a drowning, a bullet hole or disease that ate away at their once healthy body. Sometimes, the expression of the dead person's face reflects the moment of death, usually horror or surprise. As the students gather around the metal table, a technician takes his razor sharp knife and opens up the torso to carve it up. Students that cannot stand the sight or smell scurry away and gag.

Bowe's class has put death in the spotlight. As a class in many universities, the topic of death is popular as a discussion but this class really makes an impact because it is more hand's on and students are personally involved instead of just out of a book. Her class has evolved over the past 14 years since it began and many students are so bothered by "death" that they seek psychological help on campus.

Bowe stated that many of the students that take the class have suffered from a death of family member, encounters that nearly killed them, or disease. The class does not go beyond death, as what happens after death or the white light some claim to see. It is just a nuts and bolts, in your face, grim, class.

Death can happen to anyone, anytime. In a second. Something for all to think about.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)