Global Health Programs at UB

Photo by Douglas Levere.

The University at Buffalo is committed to improving population level health in communities around the world. Dozens of innovative research and education programs are harnessing UB's strengths to create impactful change in our local and global communities.

Program Contact

Buffalo Human Rights Center


As the focal point for human rights work at the School of Law, the Buffalo Human Rights Center fosters coursework, research, scholarship and direct engagement in human rights among faculty and students.

Tara Melish, Director



Phone: 716-615-2257

Buffalo Outreach and Community Assistance


UB Dental BOCA is a student-led organization dedicated to promoting dental education, providing free dental care and improving the quality of life for people around the world. Our members include dental school students, faculty and staff.

Joe Gambacorta, Director



Phone: 716-829-2862

Center for Integrated Global Biomedical Sciences


The UB Center for Integrated Global Biomedical Sciences is an international hub for innovation that brings together scientific disciplines in a nontraditional approach to build capacity to address regional as well as global challenges.


It uses education, training and research to promote novel discovery, maximize technology and foster translation. It works with international partners in addressing global health challenges and in recognizing the important connections between health and sustainable economic development.

Gene Morse, Director



Center for Trade, Environment, and Development


The Center for Trade, Environment and Development (CTED) is an independent research center affiliated with the Department of Geography at the University at Buffalo (SUNY). The Center supports research on trade and investment policies and patterns through the lens of social and environmental outcomes.

Marion Werner, Director



Engineering World Health


Engineering World Health is a U.S.-based non-profit organization that engages the skills and passions of students and professionals from around the globe to improve healthcare delivery in low-income countries.


The mission of the UB EWH student chapter is to help students apply knowledge and skills to real problems facing health professionals in the developing world, while expanding the practical abilities of these students beyond what they might be exposed to in the classroom and creating new and exciting innovations in biomedical technology.


Food Systems and Healthy Communities Lab


The food systems planning and healthy communities lab, a research group led by Dr. Samina Raja, housed in the School of Architecture and Planning at the University at Buffalo is dedicated to research that critically examines the role local government policy in facilitating equitable, healthy, and sustainable communities. The lab is especially focused on community food systems as a space and lever for creating positive change in our backyard (Buffalo) and in teh Global South. The Food Lab's research unfolds in collaboration with other research groups within and outside UB, as well asin partnership with community and planning organizations and local governments in the United States and globally. Drawing on its research, the Food Lab team provides technical assistance to community advocates, planners, and local governments on the use of policy and planning to create equitable food systems and healthy communities.

Samina Raja, Director



Phone: 716-829-5770

Global Health Grand Rounds


Medical residents on theglobal health scholars track are required to attend these seminars, but they’re open to UB residents, medical students, faculty members and others interested in learning about international and refugee health care.


Global health grand rounds change format depending on the topic. Some feature guest speakers; at others, you’ll engage in small-group discussions based on assigned reading. They cover a range of subjects, from the treatment and prevention of diseases common in developing countries to the challenges and rewards of caring for the world’s underserved populations.

David Holmes, Director



Phone: 716-831-8612

Global Health Initiative


The UB School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences has offers multiple initiatives which expose our students to practical global health concerns, promote culturally competent health care, and foster the development of servant leadership in global populations locally, nationally, and internationally. 

Gina Prescott, Director



Global Health Interest Group


IHIG provides information about current global health issues and research, funding sources for international trips and a supportive environment for medical students pursuing international clinical electives, rotations or research.


They advocate for first- and second-year medical students to take supplemental courses in global health, public health and refugee health.

David Holmes, Director



Phone: 716-831-8612

Global Health Scholars Track


Unlike international health tracks in some family medicine residency programs, UB's  global health scholars track is fully funded and doesn’t restrict students to one location. First year medical students have protected time and funding to attend a national global health conference. Second year students will spend two weeks at a location of their choosing, with the opportunity to travel with UB medical students and faculty. Third year students will spend four weeks at a location of theirchoosing, again with the opportunity to travel with UB medical students, faculty and fellow global health track residents.

David Holmes, Director



Phone: 716-831-8612

Global Opportunities


The University at Buffalo School of Nursing has an active and exciting international presence offering multicultural and international enrichment opportunities.


There are many significant opportunities available internationally, in the United States and in the greater Buffalo-Niagara community that allow students to experience a different cultural environment. Here at the School of Nursing, we value service to our community and offer opportunities to work with multicultural populations in a variety of settings.

Molli Oldenburg, Director



Human Rights Initiative


The Human Rights Initiative was founded in July 2014 to meet the growing needs of the asylum seeker population in western New York. We are a medical student-run asylum clinic that collaborates with licensed healthcare professionals in our area to provide forensic evaluations for survivors of torture seeking asylum in the United States.

Kim Griswold, Medical Director



Immigrant and Refugee Research Institute


The vision of IRRI is to create and share practical knowledge on immigrants and refugees and to improve their lives in the region, in the nation and in the world, with a particular focus on refugee issues in collaboration with Western New York newcomer communities. Based on human rights perspectives, the members of the IRRI utilize research as a tool to sustain the dignity of every immigrant and refugee. 


The IRRI is a meeting place for all stakeholders interested in developing knowledge, policy and practice related to immigrants and refugees where scholars interested in working with immigrants and refugee populations share and exchange ideas with each other and with newcomer community leaders/members.

Wooksoo Kim, Director



Institute for Sustainable Global Engagement


The mission of the Institute for Sustainable Global Engagement (ISGE) is to promote and support global engagement, collaboration and professional action among social work faculty, students, graduates and staff.


Housed within the Buffalo Center for Social Research, ISGE brings together researchers and faculty with common interests, facilitating collaborations in research and expanding and developing educational and service opportunities that foster global engagement and rights based approaches to alleviating pressing social and economic challenges.

Filomena Criteli and Laura Lewis, Directors


Email: (Dr. Criteli) (Dr. Lewis)

Phone: 716-645-1250 (Dr. Criteli) 716-645-1232 (Dr. Lewis)

Office of Global Health Initiatives


Our mission is to identify, engage in and advance innovative and sustainable solutions to significant global health problems. We achieve our mission through collaborative, interprofessional approaches to teaching, research and service for populations and individuals.


Housed within the University at Buffalo School of Public Health and Health Professions, we promote and coordinate global health opportunities in the school.

Lina Mu, Director



Phone: 716-829-5381

Physicians for Human Rights


This organization is the UB medical school chapter of our parent organization, Physicians for Human Rights. It promotes student education through lunch lectures, small group discussions and training with a focus on three subjects:

Racial and ethnic health disparities
Women’s rights
Human trafficking


Lectures and discussions on health and human rights issues give members the knowledge and skills to provide equal care to all, promoting excellent service to the community and improved physician-patient interactions.


Kim Griswold, Faculty Advisor



SUNY Global Health Institute


GHI is increasing SUNY-wide access and participation by students, faculty and staff in global-health research and education. It promotes cross-campus faculty initiatives andcollaboration with corporate, economic and international partners as innovative leaders in education, training and research initiatives.


The institute uses an integrated approach to increase its competitive advantage when seeking funding from state, federal and international agencies, and philanthropic organizations.  

Gene Morse