LEVI McPHERSON, a graduate student of analytical chemistry at the University of North Central Florida, is approached by agents of the Homeland Security’s Counter-terrorism Unit. The agency is recruiting Lee to study and expose the loopholes of screening instruments in airports. Struggling financially, he accepted the offer, making him a paid, benevolent hacker of the nation’s gateway. Yet Levi is horrified when an Airbus from Los Angeles disintegrated in mid-air.

At 40, when everybody’s career trajectory is going up, Levi’s still a poor graduate student, struggling financially. His research projects however, are worth million dollars. Researching the highly classified and heavily guarded secrets of detecting traces of explosives, what Lee know was a goldmine. The agency's offer is his financial break . So Levi tackles the problem like a scientist, detailing the loopholes of the aviation security and turning what he knew into a big time money machine.

JIM and JONATHAN of the counter-terrorism unit, where nowhere to be found after Charlotte International Airport, a hub of Delta Airlines closed abruptly because of instrument malfunctions in their security lines. And in a post-Osama Bin Laden’s era, the biggest blow to the United Stated after the 9/11 disaster comes unexpectedly when a passenger plane blew up in the skies of Washington D.C., in the heart of the nation.

Levi knew it was only the start of more troubles, so he recruits his fellow graduate students to counter the future attacks. They have to think like criminals—and scientists too. With the help of FBI counter-terrorism experts, Homeland Security and Transportation Security Agency, the team races to close and plug the loopholes Lee identified.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Physician's Assistant

I hurt myself playing basketball. My shoulders have limited range of motion, so I set up an appointment with a Physical Therapist at the student health center. Instead, a Physician's Assistant (PA) came to the rescue.

I have nothing against a PA, but being a PA doesn't make you an expert in shoulder injuries. I have to explain what is really going on: my range of motion (ROM) is limited, I'm protecting my shoulder in certain ROM.

In the end, he referred me to sports injury specialist (One of my dream job!!). I just wondered about the United States and the way they handle health business. People do specialize (Pediatrician, Neurosurgeon and all these experts), but in the end, they also un-specialized, such as Physician's Assistant (PA) or a nurse aid. Is the U.S. just lazy that every field needs an assistant?

Just my perspective.

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