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Berkeley Public Health launches the UC Berkeley Global Public Health Fellowship Program

Guest speaker Betty Chiang (right) of Gilead Corporation and Professor Art Reingold pose with the Gilead Fellows and BPH staff members, Hildy Fong and Deborah Barnett (far left).

The UC Berkeley School of Public Health has received a $1.4 million gift from Gilead Sciences to build domestic and international capacity to respond to emerging global health challenges through public health research, policy and practice.

Thanks to this generous support, in 2021 BPH will launch the UC Berkeley Global Public Health Fellowship Program: Building Domestic and International Capacity to Respond to Emerging Global Health Challenges through Public Health Research, Policy and Practice.

With support from Gilead in 2018, the School’s Center for Global Public Health (CGPH) piloted a program—the Gilead Fellowship for the Advancement of Global Health—to build public health capacity in scientifically lagging countries. Thanks to this initial funding, five outstanding researchers, physicians, and scholars from Uganda, Malawi, Cameroon, Brazil, and Nicaragua completed an online/residential Masters of Public Health (MPH) degree program in Epidemiology and Infectious Diseases & Vaccinology.

Building on the success of this initial pilot, the new and improved program includes six sets of activities designed to take this unique global health capacity-building training effort to the next level.

  1. Mentorship
  2. Research Projects
  3. Global Health Training Fellowships
  4. Robust Cohort Experiences
  5. Field Placements
  6. Post-Training Support

Berkeley Public Health will increase the cohort size from five to 30 by providing $40,000 fellowship award packages and opening the program to both international and domestic students in 2021.

Recognizing that today, all health is global health, the new and improved program will include about 15 residential MPH students committed to serving underserved populations. In response to current travel restrictions, Berkeley Public Health will also enroll 10 individuals from low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) in its top-ranked Online Master’s in Public Health program.  Fellows from LMICs will have the opportunity to build advanced methodological skills through the School’s new online concentration in Epidemiology and Biostatistics. The 2021 cohort will also include the five fellows who completed their MPH degrees during the pilot program.

The new fellowship program will be administered by the CGPH. “I am thrilled that Gilead Sciences has given us an opportunity to continue our work training the next generation of global health professionals and leaders,” said Hildy Fong Baker, PhD, CGPH executive director and director of the new fellowship program.

“I know we will find students who will be changemakers in shaping how we tackle health challenges in resource poor communities around the globe, who will be driven to imbue the values of health equity, innovation and collaboration in their career choices. I am so excited to meet these early career professionals—and I’m even more excited imagining what they will be doing after our program,” Baker said.

This support represents the largest gift to campus in Gilead’s history (they have made close to 100 gifts to Cal over the past decade totaling over $6.2M for a variety of scientific projects).

“I’m grateful to Gilead for their support,” said Berkeley Public Health Dean Michael C. Lu, MD, MS, MPH. ”And I’m excited about expanding fellowship opportunities to many more of our amazing students who are interested in global health, here at home and around the world.”

Stay tuned for information on how to apply for this exciting fellowship funding opportunity!

People of BPH found in this article include: