About the Center for Global Health Education learning through meaningful partnerships

institute tropicales
Instituto de Medicina Tropical, Peru

Relationships. Respect. Integrity.
The UTMB Center for Global Health Education (CGHE) is dedicated to the training of tomorrow's global health work force to improve health for the people of Texas and around the world.


The Center for Global Health Education’s mission is to improve the health of vulnerable populations, foreign and domestic, through education, value-adding collaboration, and capacity-building.


The CGHE will work alongside international partners to create innovative, multidisciplinary, interprofessional solutions to global health problems.

Program Goals

Acting with the input of long-term international collaborators, our program’s goals are to:

1) Establish sustainable international partnerships to advance mutual interests in education, research, and service

2) Train competent global health professionals that understand complex 21st century problems

3) Institutionalize a modern, ethical approach to international health

4) Develop a robust educational and programmatic research infrastructure

5) Hybridize innovative teaching techniques and technology to make UTMB a global health education knowledge economy

6) Reach across disciplines to strengthen interprofessional collaboration and leverage knowledge and skills

Resources and Links
Office of the Provost
Center for Tropical Diseases
Center to Eliminate Health Disparities
Hispanic Center of Excellence
Galveston National Lab
WHO/PAHO Collaborating Center for Aging and Health
Institute for Human Infections and Immunity

Matthew Dacso, MD, MSc
Matthew Dacso, MD, MSc
Dr. Matthew Dacso is a board-certified Physician and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Internal Medicine. He also serves as the Director of the Center for Global Health Education at UTMB and as an Associate Executive Director of the Coordinating Center for Global Health. He earned his M.D. degree from UTMB and completed his Residency and Internship at the Warren Alpert School of Medicine at Brown University. He holds a master's degree in International Development Studies from the University of London School of Oriental and African Studies. Prior to joining the UTMB faculty, Dr. Dacso served as a clinician-educator with the Botswana-UPenn Partnership in Gaborone, Botswana. There, he managed a continuing education outreach program to district hospitals, assisted in the development of national treatment guidelines for acute and chronic HIV comorbidities, and provided support to the University of Botswana medicine residency training program. He remains an adjunct member of the University of Botswana School of Medicine faculty. His research interests include global health medical education, HIV/TB and non-communicable diseases, social and economic determinants of health, medical decision-making in resource-limited settings, and traditional medicine.
Premal Patel, MD, MSc
Premal Patel, MD, MSc
Associate Director
Dr. Premal Patel is a board-certified Physician and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Internal Medicine. She also serves as the Associate Director of the Global Health Education Program at UTMB and is co-coordinator of the Global Health Inter-Professional Core Course. She earned an M.D. degree from UTMB and completed her Residency and Internship from the Warren Alpert School of Brown University. She has received accreditation though the American Academy of HIV Medicine as an HIV Specialist. She also holds a master's degree in Human Rights from the London School of Economics. Dr. Patel's special interests include HIV/AIDS in the developing and developed world, HIV and Hepatitis B Co-infection, Preventive Care for HIV-Infected Patients, HIV Drug Resistance, and education in HIV and global health. In addition to presenting at AIDS 2010, she has had many accepted abstracts to international HIV conferences. Prior to joining UTMB, Dr. Patel served as an internist in the Pediatric AIDS Corps in Gaborone, Botswana through the Baylor International Pediatric AIDS Initiative and Baylor College of Medicine. Her activities included coordinating the Adult HIV clinic, HIV related journal club, sputum induction program for TB diagnosis, developing preventive care guidelines for HIV infected patients and teaching rotating students, residents and fellows.
Caley Satterfield, MEd
Caley Satterfield, MEd
Assistant Director
Caley is the Assistant Director for the UTMB Center for Global Health Education. In this role she facilitates the strategic mission of the Center by managing the global health education training program at UTMB, including the School of Medicine Global Health Track, Global Health Inter-professional Core Course, curriculum design/development/implementation, and global health electives for medical students. Caley advises medical students on appropriate field site placement options, as well as facilitates the necessary documentation required for international travel and elective credit, logistics support, and provides safety/security briefings to students.

In addition, she contributes to educational research within the Center with specific interests in global health preparation curriculum, professional identity development of medical students (as it relates to global health), and research skills training in global health and more broadly, research skills development in general medical education.

Caley is currently pursuing a Doctorate in Education in Curriculum and Instruction with an emphasis in Learning, Design, and Technology from the University of Houston and will graduate in December 2015.
Christen Walcher, MPAff
Christen Walcher
Program Coordinator
Christen Miller, MPAff is a Research Fellow with CGHE. Christen received her Master’s in Public Affairs from the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin with a certification in the graduate portfolio program in Nonprofit Studies. Christen previously completed policy internships at Texans Care for Children and at the Office of the Governor of the US Virgin Islands Children and Families Council. Her research interests focus on child and family well being, community-driven poverty alleviation, mentoring, and international volunteerism.
Bradley Brock
Bradley Brock
Administrative Secretary
Bradley Brock is a new employee fresh to the UTMB family. He comes to us from a background in education, information technology, and private practice medical administration. His experiences allow him to function in a capacity that will be able to handle a wide variety of projects and tasks. With a strong interest in community outreach and support, volunteering, and a positive attitude he hopes to make a positive impact in Global Health.
Global Health Interprofessional Core Course (GHICC)

Spanning over a year’s time, this course is offered to students from all four schools at UTMB. The curriculum provides an overview of critical issues in understanding global health challenges in contemporary society within a multidisciplinary, inter-professional learning environment. For each module covered, there are both large-group seminars and case-based discussions. The GHICC is taught by a multidisciplinary team of UTMB and guest faculty with experience in the topic areas. Topics covered include:

• Introduction to global health and international development • Human rights and social justice • Public health and socio-economic determinants of health • Non-governmental associations and civil society • International aid and humanitarian assistance • Medical volunteerism and cultural competency

The course is designed to encourage reflection on the local as well as the global applications of the aforementioned topics. Special sessions cover additional cross-cutting global health topics:

• Biotechnology in global health • Medical decision-making in resource-limited settings • Travel safety and health

Global Health Track (SOM)


The global health track at UTMB offers a unique opportunity for medical students to study the many dimensions of global health and development, and gain hands-on experience working in settings around the globe.


All students enrolled in UTMB’s School of Medicine are eligible to apply for the GHT. Students should demonstrate a strong interest in global health issues, and be able to participate in all the required activities, including overseas electives. To remain in the track, students must successfully complete each required activity as outlined in the table below. Students who complete the track will be eligible to sit for the Certification Exam in Tropical and Travel Medicine through the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. Full certification by ASTMH requires a medical diploma and a license, so cannot be completed until after graduation


The curriculum is integrated into the full four years of medical school, and involves coursework, clinical and/or research electives overseas or in border communities, as well as independent study and completion of a scholarly paper based on the overseas experience. The basic elements of the curriculum are noted in the table below. Some of the topics covered in the track include global public health, global infectious diseases, epidemiology, maternal and child health, nutrition, sustainable development for health, and social determinants of health and their impact on the global burden of disease.

Other Requirements

Each student will have a faculty mentor, who will work with them to oversee their activities and progress in the track. Students will be encouraged to submit scholarly work (abstract, poster, etc.) for a local, national or international global health conference.

Basic GHT

International Electives

The CGHE seeks to engage international partners in sustainable, long-term relationships focused on educational exchange. We have established such partnerships with several institutions around the world and attempt to create value-adding projects for students to perform while completing their international electives.

Utilizing the principles of the “three S’s,” the CGHE attempts to mainstream the ethical principles for international health electives proposed by Crump and Sugarman (insert ref) and the Working Group on Ethics Guidelines for Global Health Training.

Safety – this principle addresses two elements of safety: that of the student and that of the patient. Students completing international electives must be living and working in safe environments, adequately prepared for the type of work they will be doing, and engaging in activities that are at their level of training. Proper training includes providing a fund of knowledge of basic principles of global health and international development, moderation of expectations, and site-specific travel health. Preparing students sufficiently for the elective also ensures that patients on the ground remain safe from well-intentioned students that could potentially cause unintended harm.

Supervision – this principle is closely related to student and patient safety. Ensuring adequate supervision implies several things: first, that a supervisor has been identified, vetted by UTMB, and deemed to be qualified to oversee the activities of students at his/her site; second, that the clinical environment is one in which supervision may take place; and third, that a process exists to monitor the activities of students while they are abroad.

Scholarship – international electives that have little to no locally-meaningful scholarly component may run the risk of becoming “elective safaris,” in which tourism and sensationalism become the focus of the experience. The CGHE asks students to add value by seeking guidance from local partners on where they may contribute to ongoing research, clinical care, or community-based projects.

Global Health Education Research

Recent decades have witnessed a proliferation in trans-national health care exchange and collaborative initiatives. Meanwhile, global health education is becoming increasingly important in medical training. As the quantity of international opportunities have expanded, the quality of such experiences remains highly variable. The CGHE is committed to making meaningful contributions to the global health education discourse and is open to collaborators interested in similar issues.

Focus areas:

• Interprofessional global health education – the multidisciplinary nature of the global health discourse lends itself to interprofessional dialogue and mutual learning. We are studying the changes in perceptions of students from various healthcare disciplines regarding other professions as they complete the GHICC.

• Preparation for global health experiences – the CGHE has generated a comprehensive pre-departure training curriculum that must be completed by all students enrolled in international health electives. We are measuring subjective and objective outcomes before and after the electives to gauge efficacy of the training program.

• Host site impact – one of the critical gaps in the global health educational literature is in the area of impact of students on host sites. In collaboration with our international partners, we are starting to generate a framework to evaluate the effects of foreign medical student rotations on a host site or community.

UTMB can offer UTMB trainees opportunities to rotate in many areas around the world. Please visit the page of your country of interest for the opportunities available. * denotes UTMB sponsored field sites






Costa Rica

Dominican Republic*







South Africa