One Health in Nepal

By: 
Peggy Trommater

In May, Director of the Online MS in Food Safety program, Dr. Melinda Wilkins, DVM, MPH, PhD, will be leading a group of MSU students on a 3-week Study Abroad visit to Nepal.  According to Dr. Wilkins, the focus of this 6-credit course will be on One Health, which is “the recognition of the interconnected nature of humans, animals and the environment, and the direct impact each system has on the other.” 

Under this One Health umbrella, students will spend their time in Nepal studying public health issues and infrastructure; domestic animal production systems; environmental health issues for humans and animals; wildlife; zoonotic disease epidemiology, transmission and control; food and water safety; and basic field research methodology. 

Between 12 and 15 students will be selected from a pool of applicants coming from both undergraduate and graduate studies.  The visit to Nepal will take place during the first three weeks of Summer Semester 2017, with departure May 12th, and return on June 3rd.  The hope is to create an interdisciplinary group from veterinary and medical fields, which could include undergraduate students enrolled in pre-vet, vet-tech, pre-med, animal science or nursing programs, and graduate students engaged in veterinary, medical, MPH, and possibly other programs as well. 

During the trip, students will visit 3 UNESCO World Heritage Sites.  These include Swayambhunath (Monkey Temple), Kathmandu Durbar Square, and Chitwan National Park.  The primary hosts during their visit will be Agriculture and Forestry University (AFU), Rampur, and the National Trust Nature Conservation (NTNC) – Biodiversity Center, Chitwan.  The students will be creating educational presentations on a disease issue of their choice, present the talks at AFU, then leave behind the materials for use by their Nepalese partner institutions.

MSU’s College of Veterinary Medicine is the primary sponsor for this study, with co-sponsorship coming from the College of Osteopathic Medicine, the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, and the College of Natural Sciences. 

For detailed information, refer to Dr. Melinda Wilkins presentation: One Health in Nepal.

Nepal field workerNepal elephant