COLLABORATIVE GLOBAL MASTER’S PROGRAM IN HEALTH AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT-IN PROGRESS
The goal is to launch the program in the Fall 2015 or Spring 2016 with a first class of approximately 25 students, and a team of international faculty with vast research and practical experience in health and development.
The program will prepare ethical change agents who think globally and act locally to address and redress the challenging issues related to global health while never losing sight of sustainable development.
The proposed program is the first transdisciplinary approach weaving public health together with sustainable development. Although Master’s programs exist in global health, public health, or sustainable development, none link these fields in a manner that fits the global challenges we face, such as achieving the Millennium Development Goals.
The Global Master’s program in Health and Sustainable Development will be based in content and approach on four integrated components:
• Global health;
• Sustainable development;
• Transformative learning; and,
• Social entrepreneurship.
Other aspects that set the program apart are:
• Rotation between the participating universities. Students will rotate between at least three countries (Costa Rica, Lebanon, and selected sites in North America, Africa and/or Southeast Asia) to obtain first-hand exposure to global challenges in health and sustainable development worldwide.
• Extended exposure to real world problems and directed on site mentoring will support transformation towards action oriented change agents.
• This South-South initiative will bring forth a “southern perspective” to the issues of global health and sustainable development, without forgetting the ultimate goal of fostering truly global change.
The program is currently in the feasibility, design and planning phase and is not expected to launch until Fall 2015 or Spring 2016. We anticipate being able to communicate about the application process by Spring 2015. In the meantime, we invite you to sign up for EARTH’s newsletter or visit the FHS website to stay informed of advances with the program.
The MasterCard Foundation launched a $1 million partnership with EARTH and the American University of Beirut, Faculty of Health Sciences to create a new replicable model for multi-disciplinary training in health and sustainable development, which meets the needs of disadvantaged communities. The program has been designed to link training to market demands, include experiential learning across developing countries, and determine joint accreditation mechanisms. As the program develops, it will be used as a model of collaboration between the Foundation’s partners.
The impetus for the development of this global Master’s springs from two prominent institutions in the Global South and is therefore grounded in the experiences, scars, and critical analysis of the impact of globalization, economics, and politics on global health and sustainable development. The proposed program of study is holistic in that it tackles the multiple ecological layers of well-being and sustainable development; and the root causes of inequities and war.
The proposed program of study is intended to cross geographic boundaries to provide students with lived experiences and embodied perspectives from various world regions. It will create a space for global discourse among a diverse student and faculty body to produce synergies, enhance critical understanding, and promote action for change. The program will highlight the impact of programmatic and policy decisions made locally on health and development; but also emphasize the critical outcomes of decisions made globally.
The program will enroll students who are committed to making a difference, hold undergraduate and graduate degrees in a wide range of disciplines, and come from all regions of the world. This diversity in the student population will enhance the program with lived, educational and occupational experiences. Students will experience the program as a cohort, forming a strong network across the world. Students of the Global North and the Global South will be challenged to look at the world from each other’s perspectives and recognize the impact of their actions on local and global change. The program thus aims to create a new cadre of global thought leaders who are conscientious of the policies, programs, and solutions they implement, ensuring that they enhance dignity and health for populations of the Global North or South.
Given the global collaborative framework of the program and to facilitate communication and collaboration across the curriculum and partner institutions, English will be the primary language of the program and of instruction.