Undergrad Minor in Global Health a First for UC
| Nov. 15, 2010
Alex Vu, a third year human biology honors student, traveled to Vietnam last summer with a team of medical professionals to deliver services to small, disadvantaged communities.
A new minor for undergraduates focused on global health launched this fall quarter.
The global health minor was developed through the UC San Diego Global Health Initiative (GHI) in collaboration with Eleanor Roosevelt College and the International Center.
“We are thrilled that the GHI has inspired the development of this exciting, new program, which is the first global health minor in the UC system,” said Steffanie Strathdee, director of the Global Health Initiative
Students are building a water resource for a small community in Honduras.
The minor seeks to strengthen and internationalize UC San Diego’s educational environment and promote awareness and understanding of the field of global health, health care, and the quality of life for underserved populations.
The global health minor is directed by Thomas Csordas, professor of anthropology. The minor's steering committee includes Catherina Gere, associate director and professor of history; Lynn Anderson, dean of International Education and director of the university’s International Center; Gabriele Wienhausen, associate dean of Biological Sciences, Clark Jordan, assistant dean of undergraduate education at the Rady School of Management; Alan Houston, provost of Provost of ERC and professor of political science; and undergraduate representative Christine Ha.
"Our intent with the global health minor is to provide students with a balance between tools for intellectual and theoretical analysis of health and healing as aspects of human existence, and pragmatic experience that can be put to use in addressing human suffering in the contemporary world," said Csordas.
Using a latex glove with drawn in "teeth" on the fingers and gums, students show a child how to
floss between teeth.
Students enrolled in the minor must complete a minimum of seven courses (28 units), five of which must be upper division. Coursework includes two core courses (the History of Public Health and Global Health & Cultural Diversity) as an introduction to the field of global health, at least one global health-related biological science course from the list of approved electives, and at least three upper-division global health minor electives offered by various, participating academic departments.
The capstone course of the curriculum is Global Health Field Experience, which engages students in a clinical or research field project. This opportunity will enable empirical insight into the global health arena, say the minor’s organizers. The explicit educational goal of the minor is to allow students to gain theoretical and practical knowledge in preparation for potential global health-related careers in research, education, government, health sciences or law.