Global Health Justice Practicum (CDE 586b)

The Global Health Justice Practicum (CDE 586) fuses didactic and experiential learning on critical topics at the intersection of public health, rights, and justice in the twenty-first century. Students from law, public health and other disciplines work in teams on real-world projects, typically with outside partners, to address key mediators of health in the U.S. and worldwide, with particular attention to concerns about equity. Readings and project work introduce students to the multiple lenses through which health issues can be tackled and build their competence to work with colleagues in other disciplines. A central goal of the class is to equip students with the capacity to engage critically and constructively with the evolving tools of law, policy and rights in the context of global health.

The practicum accepts graduate students only, and is designed with an eye toward the application of both public health and legal expertise, though students from other disciplines are also encouraged to apply. Resources are available for travel as needed. Students should be prepared to spend approximately 18 hours per week on the course, which includes class sessions, supervision meetings and independent work time on projects. At present, the course is offered only in the spring semester.

Applications are due in early December for enrollment in the Practicum in the spring semester. For application details and further information, please visit the Global Health Justice Partnership website, or contact Sarah Aquilla, GHJP program coordinator.

Course projects generally span four substantive areas:

  1. Data for Health Justice,
  2. Gender, Sexuality and Rights
  3. Infectious Diseases and Justice
  4. Pharma Justice.

Examples of recent or ongoing projects include:

  • Protecting the rights and health of sex workers
    • Mapping and analysis of municipal level, ‘diversion’ processes for persons arrested for street-level prostitution offenses in the U.S.
  • Challenging the U.S. Response to the West African Ebola Outbreak
    • Pursuing litigation and legislative advocacy in the state of Connecticut for unlawful quarantines of individuals travelling to the U.S. from areas with Ebola outbreaks
  • Advocating for drug pricing reform
    • Proposing legislative approaches to lowering prescription drug prices and carrying out state and local-level advocacy
  • Addressing the health and human rights issues surrounding the Zika epidemic
    • Conducting a rights-based analysis of policy responses to the Zika virus outbreak in Brazil and El Salvador