The Universtiy of Haifa and the University of Georgia, USA have created a new international parntership to train the next world leaders in global health.
In July of 2012, Professor Richard Schuster, Center for Global Health Director at the University of Georgia arrived at the University of Haifa, accompanied by six American graduate students. Along with their peers in the Department of Public Health at the University of Haifa, the American students participated in a course entitled "Comparative Health Systems."
The course took place simultaneously with Professor Shuster's UGA students in Georgia via video conferencing. The students located in Haifa were able to see their classmates from Georgia through large video screens and students from both locations were able to participate in the lectures. “This is new technology, it’s very exciting. Part of what we’re learning about globalization is that education can be globalized - that half of the class can be in one location and the other half of the class can be ten thousand kilometers away,” says Professor Shuster.
The partnership helps both Universities take new steps in their global health programs. Professor David Faraggi, Rector of the University of Haifa commented, "We saw a great opportunity to design a global health program that would leverage the strengths of the University of Haifa and experiential learning in the Israeli health system, together with the expertise of Professor Schuster at the University of Georgia. Professor Schuster rose to the initiative and the program was launched."
Professor Shuster will be returning to Haifa this summer for an expanded curriculum and with double the amount of students. The program will take place over eight weeks, and will include courses such as Global Health Systems, Leadership for Global Health, Global Health and Risk Communications and Evaluating International Health Programs. In addition to the academic curriculum, students have the opportunity to intern with an Israeli health agency, participate in guest presentations from health officials as well as tour health facilities for immigrant and minority groups in Israel. Professor Schuster also added that, the program is "planning to include the participation of not only UGA and UH students, but graduate students from other countries as well. We would also like to include more courses taught by multiple professors."
This international program is a part of the University of Haifa's continued dedication to international involvement. It will facilitate student exchanges, online courses, and full video-conference courses. “It is a natural step for us to take advantage of this new technology to build collaborations such as this one. We want our students studying at the University of Haifa to know that they will have the opportunity to meet and learn with students from abroad. The University of Haifa is taking its place on the international map - in its research and in educational innovation,” added the Rector.