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Reassembling the Pieces: Experiences from the Palestine Social Medicine Course

September 27, 2023 @ 11:00 am - 12:00 pm

Reassembling the pieces: Experiences from the Palestine Social Medicine Course flier

Event Recording

In July 2023, the Palestine Program for Health and Human Rights hosted its inaugural Palestine Social Medicine Course at the Institute of Community and Public Health at Birzeit University. Thirty students participated from the United States, West Bank, and the Gaza Strip. The course included 5 field visits, lectures, and guest speakers from over 20 local and international organizations and institutions.

Join us to hear directly from students about their experience and takeaways. This course was in partnership with the World Health Organization in occupied Palestinian territory. Applications for the summer 2024 cohort will open in late Fall 2023.

Date and Time: Wednesday, September 27 at 11:00am – 12:00pm EDT | 6:00pm – 7:00pm EEST

Location: Zoom – registration required


Yara Asi

Yara M. Asi, PhD

Dr. Yara M. Asi is an Assistant Professor at the University of Central Florida in the School of Global Health Management and Informatics. Her research agenda focuses on global health, human rights, and development in fragile populations. She is a Non-resident Fellow at the Arab Center Washington DC, a 2020-2021 Fulbright US Scholar to the West Bank, a 2023-2024 Non-Resident Palestinian Fellow at the Foundation for Middle East Peace, and the co-chair of the Palestine Health Justice Working Group in the American Public Health Association. She previously served as the Fall 2021 US Fellow at Al Shabaka Palestinian Policy Network. Along with working at one of the first accountable care organizations in the United States, she has also worked with Amnesty International USA and the Palestinian American Research Center on policy and outreach issues.
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Headshot of Weeam Hammoudeh

Weeam Hammoudeh, PhD, MPH

Dr. Weeam Hammoudeh is Assistant Professor at the Institute of Community and Public Health, where she teaches in the MPH program and serves as coordinator for the mental health unit. She holds a Ph.D. and MA in Sociology from Brown University and an MPH in Community and Public Health from Birzeit University. Her academic focus is on understanding how political and social transformations impact health, psychosocial wellbeing, health and social systems, and population processes, particularly in Palestine. She is a member of various research and advocacy networks, including the Palestine-Global Mental Health network, the Lancet Palestinian Health Alliance, Reproductive Health Working Group (RHWG), the Palestinian Sociology and Anthropology Association, Research for Health in Conflict (R4HC), and a policy member at Al-Shabaka.
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David Mills

David Mills, MD

Dr. David Mills is a pediatric emergency medicine physician and public health practitioner. He is a co-Director of the Palestine Program for Health and Human Rights and an Assistant Professor in pediatrics at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine. He is a faculty affiliate in the Religion, Conflict, and Peace Initiative at the Harvard Divinity School and the co-Director of the Children in Crisis working group at the Boston Children’s Global Health Program and the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative.
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Amro Hamada

Amro Hamada, Medical student

Amro is a 6th year medical student from Gaza, Palestine currently completing his studies at Al-Azhar University. 
Farah Miqdad

Farah Miqdad, Medical student

Farah is a fifth year medical student and community advocate at Al-Quds University, Al-Azhar branch in Gaza passionate about bridging healthcare and community well-being. She completed intensive training in Social Medicine and led over fifteen impactful projects and activities in the past five years. Supervising Council member at the Palestinian Medical Students’ Association, where she has been volunteering for over 4 years. 
Suzana Sallak

Suzana Sallak, BA in Nutrition

Suzana is from Hebron, Palestine. She graduated from Birzeit University with a BA in Nutrition and Dietetics, and a minor in Business Administration. During her studies, she worked at Palestine Medical Complex Hospital. Suzana will join the Center for Freedom and Justice, a Palestinian non-profit organization based in Hebron. 
Erika Willacy

Erika Willacy, DrPH student

Erika Willacy, MPH is a Doctor of Public Health student at the Harvard School of Public Health. She enters the program after more than a decade of service in global health program implementation at the (U.S.) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) where she developed and supported national public health institutes in their capacity-building strategies, creating opportunities for effective policy change, and intraprenuership to support the development of stronger public health systems. Additionally, she supported numerous emergency and humanitarian response efforts to support displaced populations, refugee communities, and other marginalized groups, as well as the workforce that aims to support them through crisis. In the next phase of her career, Ms. Willacy hopes to utilize systems thinking and leadership strategies to more effectively galvanize change and promote sustained outcomes in both humanitarian and non-humanitarian communities.
Cecilia Zhao

Cecilia Zhao, M.S. Student

Cecilia Zhao is a Master of Science student at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in Neuro/Psychiatric Epidemiology and concentrates in Humanitarian Studies. She has been working toward eliminating structural barriers to mental healthcare as a researcher and a founder of a non-profit organization. She is passionate about promoting global health equity, access, and human rights and has experience working with diverse and marginalized populations


September 27, 2023
11:00 am - 12:00 pm


Zoom – Registration Required