Outside the Classroom: 2012 National Globemed Summit
Our university’s chapter of Globemed partners with Kitovu Mobile AIDS Organization in Masaka, Uganda, and helps this grass-roots organization provide HIV/AIDS care and increase the level of hygiene and sanitation in Masaka by supporting community run projects such as the construction of clean water tanks and community instruction on topics such as disease transmission and water-borne illness.
With the funds awarded me by achievement of the Honors Travel Grant, I was able to cover some of the expense of flying out to Chicago, Illinois, and then traveling to Evanston, Illinois to attend the 2012 National Globemed Summit at Northwestern University. The theme of the Summit was elimination of poverty as a way to combat global health inequity. At the summit, I attended three days of lectures and workshops on partnership as a solution to global heath inequality and listened to keynotes from Pamela Barnes, the president and CEO of Engender Health, and other global health professionals.
The workshops were staffed by young adults who had graduated and continued on from Globemed into social global welfare and developmental entrepreneurial sciences. The workshops concentrated on the opportunities these students had encountered after leaving Globemed and on how undergrads could improve their chapters by placing emphasis on strengthening the partnerships between each individual chapter and grassroots organization. On the other hand, the panels at the Summit were run by professionals in the fields of epidemiology and global health who presented information on their respective NGOs and government agencies.
Attending this event allowed me to learn more about how we as a chapter can support our partner in Masaka, Uganda, and how, through this support, we may take steps towards a rise in global health. Although I received innumerable benefits and insights from listening to the speakers from the keynotes, panels, and workshops, the most influential part of the conference centered on the ability to network and learn from other chapters and global health leaders. For example, during the conference I was able to connect with other Globemed chapters from around the Boston area with whom I am now currently coordinating events and fundraisers. The networking opportunity also helped me gather information on how other chapters succeeded in raising funds, retaining members, and piquing interest at their universities.
In total, by allotting me the Honors Travel Grant, the Honors Office helped me attend one of the most influential conferences for student leaders in the country. This was a fantastic occasion for me to pursue the development and growth of Globemed at Northeastern, and I highly encourage anyone interested in global development and health equity to look for Globemed as an up-and-coming health club on campus. This opportunity would not have been possible without the support of the Honors Office. In addition to encouraging students to research Globemed at Northeastern, I also encourage students to apply for the Honors Travel Grant as a way of pursuing their interests and passions.