Migrant Health

Special Topics in Experiential Global Health: Migrant Health (HSCI 885/496)

2018 inaugural cohort of "Experiential Learning in Global Migrant Health" with community partners

2018 inaugural cohort of “Experiential Learning in Global Migrant Health” with community partners

Special Topics in Experiential Global Health: Migrant Health (HSCI 885/496): Apply now for Summer 2021!

Calling all graduate and senior undergraduate students with interests in global and applied public health! Are you interested in global health, migration, human rights, and social justice?

This Summer, the SFU Faculty of Health Sciences will be offering an intensive, interdisciplinary course in experiential learning in global migrant health. During this two-week synchronous course, students will have the opportunity to learn about current challenges, issues, and solutions to addressing health inequities faced by diverse migrant populations globally. This course is taught by Dr. Shira Goldenberg and is offered in partnership with community and academic partners in San Diego and Tijuana, Mexico, including the University of California San Diego School of Medicine.


Shira Goldenberg, PhD (she/her) is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University and the Director of Research Education at the Centre for Gender and Sexual Health Equity (CGSHE). She is also adjunct faculty in the Division of Infectious Diseases and Global Public Health at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine. Shira has conducted research on sexual health, violence, and human rights for im/migrants, sex workers, and young women since 2006. Her work has informed global policy initiatives and guidelines related to sex workers’, women’s and im/migrants’ health including through consultation roles with the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) and the International Association for Providers of AIDS Care.

Shira’s work has demonstrated the serious health and social inequities faced by marginalized im/migrant women in Canada and internationally, with a focus on sexual health, precarious labour conditions, gender-based violence, and access to health services. She is Principal Investigator of An Evaluation of Sex Workers’ Health Access (AESHA), an ongoing longitudinal, community-based cohort study focused on sexual health, human rights, and access to care among women sex workers in Vancouver, BC. Shira also leads the Evaluating Inequities in Refugee and Immigrant Women’s Sexual and Reproductive Health Access (IRIS) Study with colleagues in BC. Her research employs qualitative, epidemiological, and community-based research approaches. Dr. Goldenberg is passionate about the role of community engagement and partnerships for ensuring ethical and effective approaches to research, programmes, and policy to advance the health and wellbeing of marginalized communities.



May 17-28, 2021


Graduate and senior graduate students from SFU, UCSD, or other institutions participating in the Western Dean’s Agreement (e.g. UBC).

Who can participate?

Applications are open to graduate and senior undergraduate students. Prerequisites include:

  • Introductory course in global health (HSCI 821/160 or equivalent) or instructor approval;
  • Experience in Latin America or with migrant-supporting organizations an asset;
  • MPH students must complete Core concepts & practice for public health I/II (HSCI 900/901);
  • Students from other programs (e.g., International Studies) with relevant background may be eligible and are encouraged to contact the instructor for more information.
What is the format?
  • Synchronous daily online seminar (approx. times: 9am-11am and 1pm-3pm daily);
  • Engage in hands-on, applied learning with a cohort of students with similar interests;
  • Classes will include a mix of:
    • Guest speakers,
    • Dialogue on current and complex issues,
    • Reflexive discussion,
    • Didactic lectures, and
    • Small group work;
  • Perspectives of diverse stakeholders will be featured, and students will have the ability to directly learn from community, policy, and academic partners;
  • Case study material will include challenges and community responses to COVID-19 among migrants at the San Diego-Mexico border and in Canada.
How to Apply

Applications are currently open! Submissions are reviewed as they arrive, with the Round 1 deadline February 12, 2021. Interested students are required to apply by sending one email with the following materials to

  • A one-page statement summarizing prerequisites completed, any prior relevant experience (e.g., global health, migrant health) and how the course complements your learning and career goals;
  • Unofficial transcripts from your most recent and current degree
Student testimonials – Summer 2020 (online)
  • Students who participated in this course remotely in 2020 described it as highly effective in facilitating reflective and in-depth learning on deep-rooted issues of health (in)equity, social justice, and structural determinants of health.
  • Guest lectures and discussions with international and local community and academic partners were felt to greatly enrich students’ learning outcomes.