Through training students in global health, partnering with effective grassroots organizations, and growing its network of chapters, GlobeMed aims to strengthen the movement fighting for equity in global health.
GlobeMed is a national organization of student-led chapters at universities across the country that partner with grassroots NGOs serving poor communities. GlobeMed’s national headquarters are located in Evanston, IL and the network has grown to over 30 campuses with the hub at Northwestern. GlobeMed enables students and communities to work together to improve the health of the poor.
Visit the GlobeMed website.
GlobeMed at Northwestern
Since the chapter’s founding, more than one hundred students have been members of GlobeMed at Northwestern. These members, along with hundreds of other students on the Northwestern campus, have participated in GlobeMed’s high-impact programming. In addition to providing students with the knowledge and skills to address issues of global health, these events have mobilized participants to join in the movement for global health equity. GlobeMed has developed a comprehensive set of programs to educate, enable, and inspire students to understand growing inequities in global health and to actively make an impact in the work of partner grassroots health organizations. At Northwestern, students learn about global health practice and policy through globalhealthU, GlobeMed’s year-round global health curriculum.
GlobeMed at Northwestern has funded the design and construction of the H.O.P.E. Center, a village-level health center that works with the Ghana Health Services to deliver needed public health services to the eight rural communities that otherwise lack access to health care. The H.O.P.E. Center currently serves 6,000 people in eight villages with child welfare clinics, childhood immunizations, maternal health classes, insecticide-treated bed net distribution, and family planning services. Currently, GlobeMed at NU is working to address malnutrition through a community-based nutrition and education program. Their partnership with the H.O.P.E. Centre has enabled Northwestern undergraduates to see first-hand what it takes to build, develop, and maintain a clinic in Africa.
Visit the GlobeMed at Northwestern website.
Former Chapter President, Lalith Polepeddi
“It is important for undergrads to ask themselves ‘what can global health be for me?’. From music to math, from economics to English, and from transportation logistics to theatre, global health is really how to connect one’s personal interests to develop innovative solutions that achieve health equity and social justice.”
An accomplished student in both of his majors, biology and computer science, Lalith may be most recognized at Northwestern for his work in the area of global health and participation in GlobeMed. During his first year as a graduate from Northwestern Lalith will be continuing work on two projects started during his time working with GlobeMed—travelling to Ghana to implement a community-based education program emphasizing proper nutritional practices for children under the age of five, and founding a software company using Virtual Clinic Technologies, which he developed as a result of his experiences working with the HOPE Center.
In 2009 Lalith was awarded a grant through 100 Projects for Peace, along with fellow Northwestern student and GlobeMed member, Daniel Perlman. Their project, Preventive health for peace: Alleviating child malnutrition in Ho, Ghana, began this summer. It was developed based on GlobeMed’s existing relationships built with the HOPE Center and the Ghana Health Service, and used community development strategies based on Daniel’s study of Asset Based Community Development (ABCD).
Lalith has also received the attention of many international non-profits and recognition from the Clinton Global Initiative for his development of Virtual Clinic Technologies. Virtual Clinic is an interactive 3D model of the HOPE Center that allows anyone around the world with access to the internet to see the clinic and learn more about its role in the community. He originally created the model for his fellow GlobeMed members to have a visual experience with the clinic that forms the basis of so much of their work at Northwestern. However, upon completion of the project it was clear that there were many applications for this type of modeling, and that it could have a positive impact on the efforts of global health workers and international service organizations worldwide.
When asked about the impact GlobeMed had on his education and expertise within his majors, Lalith said, “I learned that improved technology does not automatically mean improved health care, but instead can be used to enhance existing strategies and perhaps even create better ones. It is this type of technological diplomacy that I am excited to develop with my company and in my future.”
To see Lalith’s Virtual Clinic Technology in action, visit www.virtualclinicsite.org.