A new twelve-month Master’s Program in Infectious Disease and Global Health (MS-IDGH) at Cummings School has been created to address a critical need. Emergence of new or increasingly virulent infectious agents, antimicrobial resistance, and the risk of deliberate dissemination of biothreat agents are serious evolving threats to human health. With the exponential increase of human and animal populations, international travel, and the shrinking of wildlife habitat, the risk of “pathogen spillover” from wild to domestic animals and humans is a serious public health crisis (Ebola, SARS, Avian Flu, Nipah virus, MERS, others). These threats have become a major focus for research institutions, and for disease surveillance, investigation, and control by governments and international agencies. This program, with deference to the One Health Initiative, is strategically located at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University. The IDGH faculty is devoted to the investigation of human infectious diseases.
The program features many unique elements:
- Experienced teaching faculty with impressive expertise and hands-on experience with infectious agents responsible for serious diseases in humans, including those transmitted from animals to humans (zoonotic), or those relevant to environmental health.
- Innovative and collaborative infectious disease research highlighting extraordinary national and international efforts by faculty and scientists within the program to improve human and animal health around the globe.
- An interdisciplinary network of related areas: Infectious Disease, Global Health, Conservation Medicine, Public Health, and Wildlife Medicine
- A rigorous and comprehensive curriculum with a major focus on in-depth understanding of human and zoonotic infectious diseases of global importance and mastery of laboratory techniques used in diagnostics, vaccines and immunotherapies.
- A course of studies with strong emphasis on the development of leadership, analytical and presentation skills through critical analysis and presentation of the scientific literature, proposal writing, biosafety, research ethics, Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) and laboratory management.
- Well-equipped, cutting-edge laboratories including an on-site BSL-3 laboratory and proximity to the epicenter of biotechnology research.
- Substantial funding (> $150 million in last 20 years) to faculty from federal agencies and foundations (NIH, USAID, DOD, Gates Foundation) as well as corporate sources for research on pathogenesis, detection, diagnosis, treatment, prevention and control of infectious agents/diseases and biothreats.
- The IDGH Department group has been awarded (2009-2019) a high profile USAID global health project on Emerging Pandemic Threats in Southeast Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Graduates will be well prepared for career opportunities in biopharma, academia, government, or nonprofits, and will be more competitive for admission to doctoral level programs.