This program aims to give students a chance to study and learn from public health systems in a variety of European settings and to compare and contrast with public health systems in Ghana. While students will visit London, Amsterdam, Paris, Venice, Milan, Accra, and Geneva as part of the study abroad, we anticipate the bulk of the experience will take place in Ghana, Netherlands, France, and England. Students will be immersed in the local culture as they conduct interviews with local residents and through direct observation of environments, health behaviors, and lifestyles. Students will experience the impact of social and built environments (culture) on their own behaviors and learn to identify how differences between American values and lifestyle related to health differ from those in various field locations. Students will observe how public health programs and policies in Europe contribute to the overall health of populations and how these policies are different from approaches in Ghana. They will learn innovative approaches to tackling public health challenges such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and other chronic conditions. They will also have an opportunity for direct public health contact in applied projects in Ghana. Students will participate in active learning exercises and will have many opportunities to be physically active in the local environments with both planned and opportunistic excursions. This study abroad will be most appealing to students that are passionate about health, enjoy leading an active lifestyle (or want to begin doing so), and desire to experience diverse European cultures and their impact on health. Lastly, students will observe and explore the role of faith in healthy lifestyle choices.
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