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Grant Expands University's Global Focus

October 17, 2008 10:45 AM
Deirdre Boling newwave@tulane.edu

Tulane University has received a $400,000 grant from the Fogarty International Center, part of the National Institutes of Health, to expand global health education. Five schools within Tulane will offer courses through the Tulane Framework for Global Health Program, including the School of Liberal Arts, the School of Medicine, the School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, the School of Science and Engineering and the School of Social Work.


A new grant allows Tulane University to expand its global health education program. (Photo by Paula Burch-Celentano)

The grant, a component of the Fogarty Center's Framework Programs for Global Health, will initiate a new, multidisciplinary global health certificate program for students from any Tulane school or department. The program will train students to apply an interdisciplinary perspective to their major field of study by completing global health courses in ecology, anthropology, the environment and health, among others. Students also will complete an overseas internship with a global health focus.

In addition, the grant will create a Global Health Office based in New Orleans, with another office in Lima, Peru.

Tulane joins a group of universities throughout the United States and the world that have received such grants. The funds will be provided over three years.

Pierre Buekens, dean of the Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, will be the program director, and Valerie Paz Soldan, research assistant professor in the school's Department of International Health and Development, will serve as chair of the faculty resource group and program manager.

“Study in all disciplines is becoming increasingly global,” said Buekens. “This grant presents an incredible opportunity for Tulane to engage students across the university in issues that transcend fields of discipline and national boundaries.”

The Global Health Office will manage all activities of the Framework for Global Health Program, and will provide a variety of related resources, including an annual three-day immersion workshop, held in Lima, on conducting global health research; a two-day New Orleans-based workshop each semester on funding issues related to global health research; a database of international fellowship, research, and employment opportunities; and management of a faculty resource group to foster collaboration among faculty and provide mentors to participating students.

Tulane is uniquely positioned to fulfill the ambitious goals of this interdisciplinary education research program, Buekens added. The School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine is one of the few U.S. schools of public health with a department focusing on global health and development and it is the only school with a tropical medicine department.

The certificate program is expected to begin in fall 2009.

Deirdre Boling is the director of communications for the School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine.