Delegation from Michigan Public Health Visit Africa to Support Global Public Health Research and Practice

Berhanu Gebremeskal, Amy Sarigiannis, DuBois Bowman, Rivet Amico, and Gary Harper of Michigan Public Health pose with members from the African Population Health Research Center (APHRC).

A contingent from the University of Michigan School of Public Health, including Dean DuBois Bowman, recently spent a week in Africa, exploring potential avenues for public health collaboration and research. Visiting Kenya and Ethiopia, the trip’s focus was to strengthen the existing relationships with partners in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Gary Harper, professor of Health Behavior and Health Education has several ongoing partnerships in the region and was part of the delegation. “If we at Michigan Public Health are going to fulfill our mission of pursuing a healthier world through compassion, innovation and inclusion, then we need to be physically present in areas of the world where we can work in collaboration with local partners to help make that impact happen,” Harper said. 

Members of the group from the Biostatistics department facilitated several different workshops as part of the Office of Global Public Health’s GLOBAL STATCORE, an initiative to assist global partner institutions in educational and training support for statistical methods most relevant to global health research. In addition, the Health Behavior and Health Education members presented a similar workshop focused on building global public health research and practice capacity through social and behavioral science methods.

“We can share data and information through computers and phones, but nothing can replace face-to-face contact and shared cultural experiences to solidify and sustain our global partnerships," Harper said.

Gary Harper poses with workshop participants from the University of Nairobi.
Michigan Public Health’s Berhanu Gebremeskal, DuBois Bowman, Rivet Amico, Amy Sarigiannis and Gary Harper pose for a photo with members from St. Paul’s Hospital Millennium Medical College