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University Of California Launches Global Health Institute

UC announced Global health institute.

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The University of California on Nov. 9 launched a Global Health Institute using almost $4 million in startup funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

The institute will begin a one-year master’s degree program for enrolling students in fall 2011 and focus the expertise of the university’s 10 campuses in creating solutions to the world’s global health challenges.

“One Health: Water, Animals, Food and Society” is one of the three multicampus, multidisciplinary centers established under the institute.

“It is becoming very clear that we in the United States both receive and contribute to global health problems,” said Patricia Conrad, DVM, Ph.D., a professor in the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, who will lead the One Health Center. “This year we saw how new diseases like H1N1 influenza are only a short flight away from us in California and how, within days, they can spread worldwide. We also are seeing how financial decisions made in the United States can profoundly impact the entire world’s economy, just as our carbon use can alter the world’s climate.

“Our students see this clearly, and they want the practical skills, relevant knowledge and opportunities to help solve the resulting health problems that impact vulnerable people in California and globally. Now is the best time for the University of California to help prepare students for those challenges.”

The other two centers are “Migration and Health” and “Women’s Health and Empowerment,” to be led by the UC Davis School of Medicine, and UC San Francisco and UCLA, respectively.

In addition to the one-year master’s program, the institute is planning two-year master’s and doctoral programs, granted by the UC campuses at which the students conduct their work. Under the institute’s umbrella, the centers at the individual campuses will spearhead development of the graduate degree programs and design field projects for students at partnership sites worldwide.

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