CUSM Welcomes Faculty from Uganda's Mbarara University of Science and Technology

CUSM faculty and students welcomed faculty from Mbarara University of Science and Technology in Uganda for collaborative discussions.

Four faculty from Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST) in Uganda visited California University of Science and Medicine (CUSM) to work on a collaborative National Institutes of Health (NIH) grant addressing non-communicable disease and to engage in discussions focused on mental health and health education in Uganda. One of the sessions was hosted by the Global Health Student Interest Group (GH SIG) at CUSM. The event focused on an exchange of ideas between faculty of the two universities and CUSM students.

Caitlin Shin and Anmol Shrestha, the presidents of the Global Health Student Interest Group, are first year CUSM students and share a passion that healthcare should be addressed on a global level.

“The opportunity to host MUST faculty was an amazing experience that deepened both our knowledge of mental health education in Uganda and our connections with some of the leaders in global mental health education and research,” said Shin.

“It was fascinating to learn about mental health and what it means to care for such patients from a perspective different than the one we learn as US medical students, both on a policy level and a practitioner level. With CUSM's partnership with MUST, we look forward to continuing this sharing of perspectives and creating a lasting partnership that allows students and faculty to learn about mental health care from diverse contexts,” added Shrestha.

The student-hosted event focused on candid, open discussions with the goal of facilitating collaboration among healthcare leaders to address issues of mental health close to home and globally.

“Healthcare should not be defined by national borders,” said Dr. Zohray Talib, CUSM Professor of Medical Education and Internal Medicine and Chair of the Department of Medical Education. “Shared discussion is where collaboration begins,” said Dr. Talib. “Whether talking to our colleagues down the road or across the globe, we can learn from each other’s experiences to improve our own approach to providing the best medical care possible to our patients and communities.”

CUSM’s mission is to train a health workforce that is well-versed in health issues and health systems globally. Currently CUSM’s global health program engages students and faculty in a variety of education and research activities with key partnerships in Uganda and Rwanda.

The visit with MUST concluded with a luncheon and discussion with CUSM students and faculty from nearby Claremont Graduate University (CGU). CGU’s School of Community and Global Health shares the CUSM mission to drive social accountability as we strengthen health systems globally.