Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

Center for Global Health

Student Advisory Committee

The Center for Global Health places great value on engaging with FSM students in global health education initiatives at the medical school and invites their participation in the center's work by announcing a call for new members for the FSM Student Committee on Global Health. FSM students from all class years are invited to participate. By serving on the student committee, FSM students have a unique opportunity to work alongside center administrators and faculty to help shape the vision and direction of global health education at Feinberg.  Members also gain an opportunity to network with peers and develop connections across classes with other student leaders interested in global health.

Committee Structure and Expectations

Committee Mission Statement

The FSM student committee on global health is committed to advocate for institutionalizing global health service, education, and research within the Feinberg School of Medicine and to build community among Feinberg students interested in global health work.

Call for Members

See the Call for Members of the Student Advisory Committee on Global Health

Feinberg's Student Committee on Global Health

The Student Committee advocates for FSM student interests in improving health worldwide and helps build a strong community of peers engaged in global health throughout their time at Feinberg and beyond.

Lia Benes, M2

Lia grew up in the western suburbs of Chicago. She graduated from Emory University in 2017 with degrees in applied mathematics and Spanish. Her interest in global health was nurtured by her study of the Spanish-speaking world and interest in the intersections between medicine, language, and culture. As part of her Spanish major, she spent two months in Buenos Aires studying health care and public health issues in Argentina as well as shadowing an infectious disease physician. As a medical student, she enjoys serving a diverse patient population at CommunityHealth and interpreting for Spanish-speaking patients. During her M1 summer, she participated in a CFHI-sponsored maternal health program in Oaxaca, Mexico. Through this program, she helped facilitate a bidirectional learning workshop for local midwives. As part of the student committee, Lia hopes to continue learning about global health disparities and apply global health knowledge to address health inequity here in Chicago.

Nell Birch, M2

Nell is originally from outside Boston, MA. She graduated from Georgetown University with a degree in Global Health in 2017. As an undergraduate, Nell worked worked at a rural health center in Western Australia, where she became interested in rural health systems functioning and the role of cultural sensitivity in healthcare. At Feinberg, Nell is a part of the MPH program, and she hopes to pursue her interests in global health and public health as a physician in the future. As a member of SCGH, she hopes to create events for the Feinberg community to learn about the complexity of the global health system and the role of future physicians within it.

Stephen Lander, M2

Stephen Lander is an M2 who is originally from Denver, Colorado. He studied Mechanical Engineering and Biochemistry at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan. During his undergraduate years, he studied briefly in Ethiopia and became interested in the health of communities, especially in regard to access to clean water and how that affects a community’s health. After graduation, he returned to Ethiopia to work with a local consulting company in the development of a low-cost water filter that focused on human-centered design. As a member of the committee, Stephen hopes to get fellow students involved in global health as well as promote conversations about sustainable solutions and human-center innovations to address global health issues. ​

Abigail Wang, M2

Abigail is from Bucks County, Pennsylvania. She attended the University of Pittsburgh, where she studied poetry and global health and graduated with a degree in neuroscience. In Pittsburgh, she worked with recently resettled refugees, connecting local families with undergraduate volunteers and coordinating a college and career preparation program for high school students. During this time, she engaged frequently with questions of the ethics of international (and local) sustainable development and how to best facilitate critical service learning opportunities. In this setting, she also became interested in transcultural psychiatry in the context of both communities in the United States and abroad. Throughout her undergraduate years, she conducted research on the underlying mechanisms of obsessive-compulsive disorder. She also interned with USDA Rural Development on their summer food program. As a member of the committee, she hopes to broaden and deepen awareness of the complexities of global health work.​

Swetapadma Tripathy, M3

Sweta is originally from Odisha, India. She became interested in global health due to personal experiences growing up in an area where medical care was sparse. She graduated from University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign with a major in Molecular and Cellular  Biology and Psychology in 2016. She was global health chair in AMSA and raised awareness on current issues and facilitated studying/traveling abroad programs. As part of the committee, she hopes to develop a greater understanding of actions that can be taken as students and future physicians to address health care disparities globally.  

Wenyuan Zhou, M3

Wenyuan is from a suburb outside of Philly. She spent four wonderful years at the University of Pittsburgh (H2P!), where she studied molecular biology, chemistry, Spanish, and sociology. There, her interest in global health was nurtured by active involvement in Global Brigades, where she learned and discussed global health ethics and sustainable development with fellow students. After graduation, she served as a preschool tutor in Guatemala City for a year. Over M1 summer, she completed her MPH Field Experience in Cuba, where she learned about the national health system and integration of public health and medicine in practice. Her interests lie in primary care, community health, reducing health disparities, and working with underserved populations. As part of the student committee, Wenyuan hopes to work on events and activities that will get students involved in global health issues locally and abroad.

Natalie Colaneri, M3

Natalie Colaneri is from New York and graduated from Dartmouth College with a major in Biology and minor in Psychology in 2012. As an undergraduate, Natalie became very interested in substance abuse and pursued research related to addiction and the use of cognitive-enhancing drugs in higher education. She also interned at the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration in order to gain a better understanding of policy related to drug use. After graduating from college, Natalie spent a year in England pursuing research on the ethics of pharmacological cognitive enhancement and examined differences between the US and UK educational systems. She became increasingly interested in medical anthropology and cross-cultural psychiatry during this time. During her M1 summer, she participated in a program focused on Public Health and Community Medicine in Delhi, India. Natalie is interested to continue to pursue global health work in the future and further develop her interests in this field.

Adeolu Ilesanmi, M3

Ade Ilesanmi is an M3 who graduated from Wake Forest University, located in her hometown, in 2015. While there, she was able to nurture her interests in global health. In 2012, she conducted an independent study on the effective practice of the Community-Based Participatory Model at a health non-profit in Nicaragua that implemented water filter use in its rural communities. In 2013, she studied healthcare and shadowed physicians practicing under the NHS in London, England. After graduating, she studied child and adolescent psychiatry at the University College Hospital of the University of Ibadan, Nigeria and conducted a mental health education intervention with secondary students in Ibadan under a Fulbright research grant. As chair of the committee, she and her colleagues hope to use programs and educational opportunities to encourage fellow students to be "glocal" in their time as medical students and as future physicians.

Liam Kane, M4

Liam is from Washington Crossing, Pennsylvania, and graduated from the University of Notre Dame where he majored in Pre-Professional Studies and Peace Studies. He was Co-President of Notre Dame’s GlobeMed chapter, an organization that partners undergraduate students with the Population Education Development Association (PEDA) in Vientiane, Laos. He organized the chapter’s first GROW Internship, which now occurs annually, in which students travel to Laos to help their partners develop and implement health education projects in order to reduce malaria transmission in the rural countryside. He also worked as an undergraduate research assistant in a psychology lab studying the developmental effects of childhood exposure to violence. He is interested in giving students and faculty at Northwestern the platform and resources necessary to become leaders in global health and to close the gaps in health equity around the world.

Chintan Pathak, M4

Chintan is from the suburbs of Chicago. He graduated from Northwestern University in 2015 with a degree in Biomedical Engineering. As an undergraduate, He became interested in global health through Project RISHI, a student organization which conducts health projects in rural India. Chintan is also interested in how healthcare infrastructure can be improved through through improvements in medical technology and equipment. He hopes to work with the Student Advisory Committee to increase awareness of global health issues in the Feinberg community.

Matthew Doerfler, M4

Matthew Doerfler received an undergraduate degree in Biomedical Engineering from Northwestern University. During this time, he worked with Feinberg’s Center for Global Health and University College Hospital Ibadan to design a low-cost warming device for pediatric surgeries in Nigeria. He then won a grant from The Alumnae of Northwestern to perform non-clinical user testing at UCHI. Before starting medical school, Matthew researched at IST Austria in Klosterneuburg, Austria and participated in the Fulbright English Teaching Assistant Program in Raub, Malaysia. He is looking forward to addressing health inequity in a sustainable, ethical, and meaningful manner.

Victor Roy, M4

Victor Roy is a founding member of GlobeMed, a non-profit network engaging students at over 30 university chapters across the US to advance the movement for global health equity. Along with travels in places like India, Ghana, and Rwanda, this experience with GlobeMed has inspired Victor’s commitment towards issues of poverty and poor health around the world. His particular interests include the politics of global health, access to treatment for tuberculosis, and community health worker models.  He is currently enrolled in a PhD program at Cambridge University.

For More Information:
Center for Global Health
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
645. N. Michigan Avenue, Suite 1058
Chicago, IL 60611
globalhealthcenter@northwestern.edu