Our students know that learning and critical thinking are essential for tackling today's complex health challenges. Through globalhealthU, they put that belief into action.


globalhealthU, our signature global health and leadership curriculum, takes learning from the classroom into the world.

How it works

“GlobeMed, to me, has been the foundation for my education. It has been in many ways more important than any class I could ever take on global health.”
- Sarah Milligan, University of Rochester ’12

GlobeMed students at the National Office work with experts across fields and disciplines to design the year-long global health and leadership development curriculum. Students at each chapter are trained as “globalhealthU Coordinators” to lead their fellow chapter members through the curriculum and engage their broader campus.

At weekly meetings throughout the year, our network of students follow the curriculum together. Chapter members analyze case studies, explore opposing views, and exchange ideas through small group discussions and interactive exercises. Ongoing feedback between chapters and the National Office enables the network to strengthen the curriculum year after year.

Through public events such as film screenings, debates, exhibits, and demonstrations, students engage their broader campus and community. Together, they confront the state of health and human rights today and ask “Why? What is my role?”

The curriculum

The 2013-2014 curriculum models an intentional shift away from top-down, siloed approaches to global health. We provide a framework of overarching ideas which guide students towards a systems-level understand of health, while integrating the voices of their partner organizations and communities. The structure of the framework remains flexible by putting the responsibility relevant topics to the Chapter themselves.

The framework categorizes critical questions into three themes:

Why are we here?

The ghU curriculum allows students to discern their own personal values through the contemplation of different approaches to global health equity. Each conversation is crafted to include every voice in the chapter and community to stimulate meaningful discussion and inspire thoughtful leaders.

Where are we now?  

Students will identify and explore the multiple contributing factors to health disparities worldwide by engaging in network wide conversations provided by the ghU companion guide. These conversations will bring in other perspectives – reaching across borders, sectors and generations to create a diverse and inclusive discussion.

How do we address the situation?

By experiencing globalhealthU sessions weekly, students are exposed to different practices of effective action combating inequity in the world and can make connections between discussion content and the work of their partner organization.

The results

9 out of 10 students reported that globalhealthU has increased their knowledge of global health issues.

‣ Students gain a diverse perspective on issues of global health, creating a solid foundation of knowledge that spans a range of disciplines.

‣ Critical thinking skills developed through globalhealthU enable students to build a meaningful relationship with their partner organization and impact community members for years to come.

‣ After students graduate, they apply the knowledge and skills they learned in globalhealthU to become an advocate for global health, regardless of their field.

World Day of Social Justice

The United Nations’ World Day of Social Justice is observed annually on February 20 to bring attention to efforts tackling poverty and inequity. Inspired by the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere,” GlobeMed chapters unite each year to commemorate this day through events including photo stories, guerrilla marketing campaigns, and nationwide teach-ins.

GlobeMed at UT-Austin on WDSJ

World Day of Social Justice 2012: GlobeMed at UT-Austin asks, “What social injustice would you trash?”

What students are saying

“This year, thanks to the diverse resources provided by our national office and hard work of our globalhealthU coordinators and co-presidents, our discussions reached a new level of depth and relevance. globalhealthU became a source of consistency in our busy schedule and a time to reflect on the meanings of our actions, not to mention a constant forum for ongoing debate and interaction.”
– Anu Ramachandaran ’13 and Lu Zhang ’12, University of Southern California

Recommended reading 

Last winter, students across the network read, discussed, and blogged about the book The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down, by Anne Fadiman.

Sample lesson plans

globalhealthU, GlobeMed’s student-developed curriculum, is designed to foster critical thought and dialogue around global health issues. It is not intended to replace any academic courses. Explore some sample lesson plans below, which are selections from the larger, open-sourced curriculum from 2011-2012. Contact to learn more and access the complete globalhealthU curriculum.

2011-2012 globalhealthU Overview
2011-2012 Sample: Track 2 Overview
2011-2012 Sample: Track 2, Week 1

Want to learn more?

Get connected to public globalhealthU events and contact the GlobeMed chapter closest to you.

Contribute to this year’s curriculum!

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