Global Learning Initiative

Welcome to the UMB Center for Global Engagement's Global Learning Initiative

What is global learning? Those involved in global learning – also called global/local, global to local, glocal, and reverse innovation – seek to identify, adapt, and implement ideas for health and health equity outside the U.S. to U.S. communities. It is also a movement within academia that seeks to break down the traditionally siloed fields of global health and community public health and all of the university institutions, scholarship, funding, and jobs that flow from these separate pathways. CGE faculty and staff are leading the efforts to document global learning methods, develop best practices, and operationalize an integrated global learning approach into university teaching, service, and research.

Global Learning Initiatives on the UMB Campus

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) awarded two UMB faculty members a three-year grant to create and launch the Global Learning for Health Equity Network. The grant is part of RWJF’s “Global Ideas for U.S. Solutions” program. The network will build connections needed to advance global learning and strengthen community capacity to bring global ideas for adoption, adaptation, and implementation within U.S. communities. Dr. Yolanda Ogbolu (School of Nursing) and Virginia Rowthorn, JD, LLM (Center for Global Engagement) are co-PIs on this cutting edge initiative designed to facilitate the translation of health equity initiatives from around the world to communities in the United States.

Global Learning Grants 

“Family Social Inclusion: Learning from Brazil to Baltimore” (2018-2021), Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grant awarded to Dr. Yolanda Ogbolu (School of Nursing).

Global Learning Curriculum and Courses 

  • "Practice, Programming, and Policy in the Face of Twin Pandemics: COVID19 and Racial/Ethnic Inequity" is an international, inter-professional elective that brings together a cohort of students from UMB and University of Haifa (Israel) to explore social justice implications to identify hurdles and opportunities for promoting social justice across disciplines, cultures, and social systems; and share global knowledge that can inform their future practice. On the UMB side, the course is led by Dr. Corey Shdaimah (School of Social Work).
  • “Intercultural Leadership Competencies for Global Collaboration,” a course about cultural awareness, cross-cultural communication, and cross-cultural crisis management for health profession students from the University of Maryland, Baltimore and the Bahiana School of Medicine and Public Health in Brazil. This course is taught on the UMB side by Dr. Isabel Rambob (School of Dentistry).

  • “Environmental Justice, Human Rights and Public Health,” a course taught by Maryland Carey School of Law faculty (Bob Percival, Peter Danchin and Diane Hoffman) and University of Malawi’s Chancellor College Faculty of Law faculty, led by Chikosa Banda. The course builds upon previous work by these faculty members who have fostered a working relationship between the two schools addressing public health and environmental issues. This course focuses on how environmental law, human rights law, and public health law frame environmental justice challenges driven by climate change.

Global Learning Convenings and Conferences 


Bi-Directional Learning 

  • "Social Justice and Health: Are They Related in My Community?," UMB's innovative global student course with Haifa University in Israel and the bi-directional learning when Haifa faculty and students visited Baltimore.

  • Interprofessional Care Teams in Salvador, Brazil project, developed by Dr. Isabelita Rambob (School of Dentistry) with partnering agency CEDAP: Centro Especializado em Diagnóstico, Assistência e Pesquisa, a state-specialized center for diagnosis, treatment, and research of STDs and HIV/AIDS.

  • Read about retired UMB faculty member Leslie Glickman's visit with George Chimatiro, MSc, a Malawi physiotherapist, to discuss culture and health care with students and teachers at Southwest Charter School in Baltimore.

For more information about the Global Learning Initiative, contact Virginia Rowthorn.