Internationalization Committee

The standing Internationalization Committee was established in 2010 to provide leadership in promoting internationalization of faculty and students at the College of Health and Human Services (CHHS). Our goals include promoting current and planned international activities and programs for CHHS faculty and students.

To help fulfill these goals we have developed this resource to

  • Display information about study abroad opportunities
  • Provide information on how to develop study abroad programs
  • Provide direct link to Education Abroad website
  • Provide a link to international and global speakers presenting health related information
  • Provide information and promote faculty engaged in international activities
  • Provide information and promote students engaged in international activities

Mexican visitors 2010Dr. Michael Thompson in the NetherlandsDr. Michael Thompson in the Netherlands
Images from recent CHHS International programs


CHHS Study Abroad Opportunities

Spring Break 2013: Social Development in Malawi

3 Credits

SOWK 3090 or SOWK 7090

Click below for program website or contact Dr. Diana Rowan

Malawi Study Abroad Program


Recent Faculty Projects Focused on International Health and Human Services


School of Nursing

Dr. Elena Ledesma Delgado, the Director of the Irapuato School of Nursing, Ms. Maria Leticia CamposZermeño, faculty, Maria Luisa Sarai Arias Cebellos, third semester nursing student, and Maria Isabel Ayala Aguillar, fifth semester nursing student from the University of Guanajuato at Irapuato School of Nursing visiting the UNC Charlotte campus October 2010.

University of Guanajuato at Irapuato School of Nursing faculty and students with Dr. Maren Coffman, faculty from the UNC Charlotte School of Nursing, following a visit to the Levine Children's Hospital in October 2010.

Below:  Spring break 2013 study abroad trip to Cuba led by Dr. Maren Coffman studying the Cuban healthcare system.





Department of Social Work

Mark Ezell, PhD.

Dr. Mark Ezell is one of the founding members of the International Association for Outcome Based Evaluation and Research in Children and Family Studies (IAOBERcfs).  They held their 11th annual meeting in Glasgow, Scotland on September 2-4th, 2012.  (Hebrew University in Jerusalem will host the annual meeting in 2013).  The group has published numerous books, articles and monographs all over the world.  Due to the generous support of the Fondazione Zancan in Padova, Italy, members of the Association are able to work together throughout the year and meet at least annually.  Besides publications in English, several of his papers have been translated into Italian and published in Italian journals.  Dr. Ezell and several members worked together on this recent publication (Two of the authors are from the U.S., two from Italy, and one each from Israel, Britain, and Australia):

Ezell, M., Spath, R., Zeira, A., Canali, C., Fernandez, E., Thoburn, J., & Vechiatto, T. (2011). An international classification system for child welfare programs.Child and Youth Services Review, 33(10),1847-1854.

Also, while in Glasgow, Dr. Robin Spath from Uconn, and Dr. Ezell presented the paper, “A Client-centered Approach: Using Sequence Outcomes to Assess Effective Interventions” at the bi-annual conference of the European Scientific Association on Residential and Foster Care for Children & Adolescents (EUSARF), September 4-7, 2012.

Suzanne Boyd, PhD.

Dr. Boyd attended the 12th International European Scientific Association on Residential Foster Care for Children and Adolescents Conference in Glasgow Scotland from September 3-7. She met with faculty and staff from the Centre for Excellence for Looked After Children in Scotland at the University of Strathclyde.

Shanti Kulkarni, PhD.

Dr. Shanti Kulkarni has been appointed to serve as CHHS representative on a UNC Charlotte initiative to develop academic partnerships with India. UNC Charlotte has been selected to participate in the Institute of International Education's (IIE) International Academic Partnership Program (IAPP) 2012-2013 Focus Country: India.  The purpose of this initiative is to develop a strategy for creating, implementing, and sustaining partnerships with institutions in India.  The IAPP is an initiative developed through support by the U.S. Department of Education's Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE). A university-wide committee will work on this initiative over the academic year.  The committee is beginning by taking an inventory of our current interaction in India in order to assess our institutional strengths.

Othelia Lee, PhD.

The aging of the population occurs at an unprecedented rate in East Asia.  Dr. E. Othelia Lee’s research examines the unprecedented challenges of global aging phenomena, functional independence, mental health, and community care in South Korea and China.  Dr. Lee has developed 12-week health promotion intervention, entitled “Body-Mind-Spirit (BMS) Program.”  This intervention was delivered to community dwelling older adults in South Korea.  The multifaceted evaluations using before-and-after measures and comparison groups showed that participation in the BMS program contributed to better outcomes in the physical and spiritual dimensions of health.


Diana Rowan, PhD.

1.  6 Continents Project

In July 2012, Dr. Diana Rowan presented in Stockholm Sweden at the 2012 World Conference on Social Work and Social Development on The 6 Continents Project.  The project was conceptualized and led by Rowan and Dr. Michael Moore, Director of Academic Technology in the College of Health and Human Services. It is a pedagogical approach to using asynchronous video uploading to link social work classrooms across 6 continents.  Other project partners are: Ulrika Järkestig-Berggren, Ph.D., Linnaeus University in Kalmar, Sweden; Innette Cambridge, University of the West Indies in St. Augustine, Trinidad and Tobago; Donna McAuliffe, Ph.D., Griffith University in Queensland, Australia; Annis Fung, Ph.D., City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, Special Administrative Region of the People¹s Republic of China.

6 Continents Project presentation at 2012 World Conference on Social Work and Social Development in July, Stockholm, Sweden.  From left to right:  Dr. Donna McAuliffe, Griffith University, Queensland, Australia; Dr. Ulrika Järkestig-Berggren, University, Kalmar, Sweden; Dr. Diana Rowan, UNC Charlotte

The UNC Charlotte Center for Teaching and Learning featured the project in the video accessible at the link below:


2.  In spring 2012, Dr. Diana Rowan led a service-learning study abroad course in Malawi.  Eleven students participated in the social work course on social development strategies in Sub-Saharan Africa.  See link below:

Spotlight:  Meaningful Work in Malawi


Chantal Hemphill (center) (Master of Social Work Student)

Honorable mention winner in campus-wide "Crossing Borders" Graduate student essay contest (2012)

Erin Strauss (seated) (Bachelor of Social Work student)

Honorable mention winner in campus-wide "Crossing Borders" Undergraduate student essay contest (2012)

Spring Break 2012 to Malawi in sub-Saharan Africa

3.  2012 International Faculty Award

In April 2012, Dr. Diana Rowan was presented the UNC Charlotte International Faculty Award.  She is the first faculty member from the College of Health and Human Services to receive the award.  See the link below for details:

Funded International Research:

  • Rowan, D., (2007-2008) PI, International Association of Schools of Social Work (IASSW) Grants for research projects in social work education (2008). Social work student perceptions and experiences of the HIV/AIDS pandemic; A comparison between students in U.S. and sub-Saharan Africa (Botswana and Malawi) ($4,000).

4.  In spring 2013, Dr. Diana Rowan led a second service-learning study abroad course on Non-government organizations (NGOs) in Malawi.

Students spent time with families in Chembe, a fishing village on the shores of Lake Malawi.

NGOs in Malawi 2013 course.  Lake Malawi.

NGOs in Malawi 2013 course.

NGOs in Malawi 2013 course.

NGOs in Malawi 2013 course.

Department of Public Health Sciences

Michael Thompson DrPH

The Department of Family & Community Medicine, King Saud University College of Medicine, recently launched an MPH Program with the long-term goal of seeing is CEPH accredited and growing into a School of Public Health.  Associate Professor of Public Health Sciences, Michael E. Thompson, MS, DrPH, has met with their faculty to discuss US accreditation philosophy and standards during two prior visits to Saudi Arabia (May 2010, May 2012) and most recently (September 2012) to witness the launch of the new MPH Program and interact with their students.

Dr. Thompson (center rear) with the King Saud University Family & Community Medicine faculty and new MPH Students (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; September 2012).


Department of Kinesiology

Rueben  Howden, PhD.
Dr. Howden, in the department of Kinesiology, is currently collaborating with: 
  • Abraham Nyska, DVM – Sackler School of Medicine, Tal Aviv University, Israel
  • Hindrik Mulder, MD/PhD – Lund University Diabetes Centre, Dept. of Clinical Sciences, Sweden
  • Ian Swaine, PhD – Dept of Sports Science, Tourism and Leisure, Canterbury Christ Church University, UK
  • Gavin Devereux, PhD – School of Science, Technology and Health, University Campus Suffolk, UK

Roy Fielding

Roy Fielding is working on a reporting system called the Lifeguard Rescue Reporting System.  This reporting system is designed to gather information about how lifeguards respond to all types of water-related incidents on the job. The ultimate goal of this work is to help various training agencies learn more about what is actually taking place when lifeguards are called upon to respond to an emergency (e.g. environmental conditions at the time of the rescue, how lifeguards identify the emergency, type of equipment used in the rescue). The project is currently endorsed by the American Red Cross, the Canadian Red Cross and the United States Lifesaving Association.  The data is being collected by Roy Fielding, faculty member at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and a member of the American Red Cross Scientific Advisory Council. The data that is entered online is anonymous in attempt to protect the lifeguard or others entering the information. The Lifeguarding Rescue Reporting System will be available to lifeguards for years to come. Having longitudinal data will help aquatic professionals throughout the industry to understand what is involved in the rescues and may impact how lifeguards are trained in the future.


Peter Magnusson
Peter Magnusson attended a symposium in Oslo, Norway at the Norwegian School of Sport Sciences in the summer of 2012.  He gave a talk on tendon and connective tissue, and also contributed to initiation of a network called Nordic Muscle Tendon Network. The aim of the network is to combine scientific competences and expertise of selected researchers working in the field of biomechanics and exercise physiology with a common aim to study muscle-tendon unit structure and function in relation to injury and adaptation to loading.
They started a large RCT trial at Bispebjerg Hospital, Copenhagen, in which they aim to examine the effect of different rehabilitation protocols following surgical repair of Achilles tendon rupture. Among other things they insert tantalum beads into the Achilles tendon during surgery, which allows them to determine the stiffness of the tendon using an x-ray technique.  They also worked on the development of an ultrasound technique that permits analysis of separate regions within a tendon. This technique will allow us to see if there are changes within a specific region in conjunction with injury and various forms of treatments.
One of the unanswered questions in tendon biology is if the smallest load bearing structure (fibril) reaches all the way from muscle to tendon, or if they are shorter and therefore need to ‘communicate’ with adjacent fibrils in order to transmit force. They are currently trying to answer this question by employing a relatively new microscopic technique at the nanoscale level that permits 3-D reconstruction, and this work is well under way.
Finally, Mangusson attended an international meeting that he had also helped plan: ‘Mechanical forces of different hierarchical levels in the human tendon. Mechanical loading of the musculo-tendinous matrix tissue in health and disease’ in Copenhagen. He provided a presentation and was chairman for one of the sessions.

Susan Arthur, PhD.

Dr. Susan Arthur spent one month in Copenhagen, Denmark working in the Institute of Sports Medicine, Bispebjerg Hospital and University of Copenhagen on a collaborative project with Dr. Peter Magnusson, Dr. Michael Kjaer and Dr. Abigail Mackey-SennelsThe project entails comparing the cell signaling differences within skeletal muscle between young sedentary and physically active males to old sedentary and physically active (master athletes).  As one ages, their ability of skeletal muscle to repair following injury (a hard bout of exercise) is delayed.  This impairment may be due to a dysfunction in cell signaling pathways that are important for skeletal muscle repair (such as Notch and Wnt signaling).  The goal of the project that she worked and will continue to work on at UNC Charlotte is to measure and quantify the expression of the components of Notch and Wnt signaling in the skeletal muscle biopsies taken from young and aged men who either were sedentary or were physically active.   Besides performing experiments and engaging with other researchers within the laboratory, Dr. Arthur had the opportunity to travel within Copenhagen and throughout Denmark, thereby gaining an appreciation of the Danish culture.

Dr. Joseph Coyle

From Dr. Coyle - "I went to Belize City from October 20 to 24 to assist in establishing an adult cardiac surgery program in that country at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. It was under the auspices of the Heineman Research Institute with Dr. Francis Robicsek at Carolinas Medical Center. I went with a team that included a cardiac surgeon, a cardiologist, a perfusionist, a Cath Lab tech, an OR nurse and a Nurse Practitioner who works at CMC. We assisted them in performing open heart surgery for a mitral valve and the first aortic valve replacement to be done in the country of Belize. I was involved in providing anesthesia and critical care support and spent quite a bit of time educating their 3 Anesthesiologists. I'll probably be going back in the Spring. The goal is that they are ultimately self sufficient."



Recent Faculty Publications Focused on International Health and Human Services


School of Nursing

  • Coffman, M. J., Burfield, A. H., Ledesma-Delgado, M. E., Campos-Zermeño, M. L., & Neese, J. B. (in press). Providing cultural experiences through two-way international exchange. Journal of Nursing Education. 

Department of Social Work

  • Ezell, M., Spath, R., Canali, C., Fernandez, E., Thoburn, J., Vechiatto, T. & Zeira, A. An international classification system for child welfare programs. Child and Youth Services Review, 33(10), 1847-1854.
  • Ezell, M. (2010). Risultati recent sull’impatto degli esiti per gli utenti. Studi Zancan: Politich e Servizi alle Persone, 5(settembre/ottobre), 105-115. (in Italian) (forthcoming)
  • Ezell, M. The application of the DCE approach in Kansas. Studi Zancan. (in Italian) (forthcoming)
  • Ezell, M. (2010). Cross-national perspectives and ideas.In Maluccio, Canali, and Vecchiato, Lightburn, Aldgate, & Rose. Improving outcomes for children and families: Finding and using international evidence. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers.
  • Ezell, M. (2007). Managing diverse sources of funding. In J. Aldgate, L. Healy, B. Malcolm, B. Pine, W. Rose & A. Bullman (Eds.), Enhancing human services: Social work management theory and practice in the UK and USA, (pp. 245-262). London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers.
  • Tice, C.J., & Long, D.D. (2009) (Eds). International social Work policy and practice: Practical insights and perspectives. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.
  • Rowan, D. & Kabwiri, D. B. (2009). Empowering HIV/AIDS orphans through teaching vocational trades: A SWOT analysis of a community-based orphan training program in Malawi. Journal of Global Social Work Practice, 2(1).
  • Rowan, D. (2009). Malawi and AIDS: Examining diversity and populations at risk. In Tice, C.J. & Long, D.D. (Eds.) International social work: Case-based perspectives from practice and policy (pp.185-207). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley and Sons.
  • Rowan, D. Kabwiri, D.B., Mmatli, T., Rankopo, M., & Long, D.  (2012).  Using video as pedagogy for globally connected learning about the HIV/AIDS pandemic.  Journal of Social Work Education, 48(4), DOI: 10.5175/JSWE.2012.201100113


Department of Public Health Sciences

  • James S. Stephens, Alexander V. Sergeev, & Elena Platonova (2010). The Health System of the Russian Federation, in J.A. Johnson and C. Stoskopf (Eds.) Comparative Health Systems, Jones and Bartlett Publishers, Boston, MA.
  • Viola Artikova, Michael Thompson, & Elena Platonova. (2011). Trends in Traffic Crashes and Injuries in the Republic of Kyrgyzstan, 2003-2007. World Health Organization Bulletin, 89:345-351. doi:10.2471/BLT.10.084434
  • Harutyunyan TL, Demirchyan A, Petrosyan V, Thompson ME. (2010) Patient satisfaction with primary health care in Armenia: Good rating of bad services? Health Services Management Research, 23 (1): 12-17 doi: 10.1258/hsmr.2009.009012.
  • Harutyuan TL, Demirchyan A, Thompson ME, Petrosyan V. (2010) Primary health care facility performance assessment in Armenia. Leadership in Health Services, 23(2):141-155 doi: 10.1108/17511871011040724.
  • Movsisyan NK,Thompson ME, Petrosyan V. (2010) Attitudes, practices, and beliefs toward worksite smoking among administrators of private and public enterprises in Armenia. Tobacco Control. 19(4):274-278. Doi: 10.1136/tc.2009.031658 Published online 15 June 2010.
  • Thompson, ME, Dorian, AH, Harutyunan, TL. (2010) Identifying priority healthcare trainings in frozen conflict situations: The case of Nagorno Karabagh. Conflict and Health, 4(21), doi:10.1186/1752-1505-4-2.
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