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Changing Lives Around the World
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Our Global Health Programs
Global Health Pathway, International (MD Students) Global Health Scholars
Students accepted into the Global Health Scholars Program (GHSP) take two immersive month-long trips to one of our partner sites:
The first trip is primarily an introduction to the community, during which you’ll develop a community health project. During the second trip, occurring in your senior year, you’ll participate in clinical care at the same location.
You’ll receive pre-trip safety sessions, in-country medical education specific to the site, and several sessions by our faculty on global- and community health-related issues. About a quarter of first-year students apply, and 80 percent of those are typically accepted.
Global Health Pathway, Domestic (MD students) Health Equity Scholars
Students accepted into the Health Equity Scholars Program (HESP) work with community partners and marginalized patients in Pennsylvania in the following track of their choosing:
- Harrisburg Scholars
- Nese Rural Scholars
HESP is a 4-year longitudinal program that seeks to equip the next generation of health equity champions in medicine.
Dependent on the track chosen, there will be a summer experience between your first and second year of medical school focused on introducing you to health equity for your community of interest, during which you’ll develop a community health project. During the second immersive month experience, occurring in your senior year, you’ll participate in clinical care at the same location and continue to build on your community health project.
You’ll receive medical education specific to your track, and several sessions by our faculty on global- and community health-related issues, as well as law and advocacy topics. You will be immersed in the community you choose to serve as early as your first year of medical school. Ongoing mentorship in the care of marginalized populations will also be provided. Each year, 6-8 students will be selected through a competitive process for the Health Equity Scholars Program.
For MD Students: Global Health Electives
As a fourth-year medical student , you’ll have the opportunity to take electives that will give you experience caring for underserved populations, including those in other countries.
Previous electives have included:
Pediatric cardiology in Guayaquil, Ecuador
This program offers fourth-year students the ability to start a Pediatric Cardiology elective in Hershey and finish with two weeks participating in an open heart surgery mission at Children's Hospital in Guayaquil, Ecuador.
Indian Health Service work in Cherokee, North Carolina
This is an opportunity for fourth-year students to work with a unique, underserved domestic population, engaging with a tribe that has rich history and culture, and working with a interdisciplinary team that uses an embedded model with home-based care and social support services.
For Public Health Students: Global Health Certificate
Master of Public Health (MPH) and Doctor of Public Health (DrPH) students have several global health experiences available through Penn State College of Medicine. The Global Health Certificate is for students who are interested in advancing their knowledge and skills in key global health competencies and can be done while pursuing an MPH or DrPH degree. The certificate requires 12 credits from two required and two elective courses.
Global Health Case Competition
Each year, Penn State assembles an interprofessional team comprised of students from the College of Medicine, Dickinson Law and University Park campuses to participate in The Emory Morningside Global Health Case Competition. The competition poses a hypothetical public health crisis for teams to solve. Each team must successfully work together to create and present a comprehensive plan that addresses the problem. Presentations are judged by a panel of experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), academia, state health departments, private industries and nongovernmental organizations.
The Penn State team consists of up to six students from an array of degree programs such as public health sciences, medicine, nursing, engineering, biology, business and law. To participate, interested graduate and undergraduate students must apply each fall.
For Public Health Students: Global Health Exchange Partnership
Through the Global Health Exchange Program, each summer, students in the Master of Public Health and Doctor of Public Health programs have the opportunity to travel abroad to India, Ghana, Taiwan and other international sites to study public health topics.
These experiences can fulfill the programs' practicum requirements.
Penn State students who are unable to travel globally have the opportunity to participate in domestic, global-health-focused learning opportunities.
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Learn More About Our Global Health Programs
Global Health Center-Public Health Initiatives
Global Health Center
Established in 2008, under the leadership of founding director Benjamin Fredrick, MD, the Global Health Center at Penn State College of Medicine is an interdisciplinary center that provides organization and oversight for the medical center's educational, service, community research and clinical care activities in global health.
Contact the Global Health Center
- Benjamin Fredrick, MD, director: email@example.com or 717-531-0003, ext. 281253
- Tamika Washington, assistant director: firstname.lastname@example.org or 717-531-0003, ext. 320032
- Facebook: Find PSUGlobalHealth on Facebook
- For current students: See information about the Global Health Scholars Program for current students
Public Health International Initiatives
Through a curriculum in international health for public health students, the International Initiatives program seeks to recognize global health disparities and discover promising health care solutions through applied coursework and meaningful international field experiences. The program is designed to provide a framework in which students explore public health issues from a global and culturally competent perspective.
Contact International Initiatives
- Dr. Kristin Sznajder, Associate Director for International Initiatives: email@example.com
- General inquiries regarding public health global experiences: firstname.lastname@example.org
- For current students: See information about Public Health Sciences' global programs for current students