Director’s Message

Welcome to the UNC Institute for Global Health & Infectious Diseases.

IGHID Director Myron S. Cohen, MD

The seeds for the institute were sown back in 2002 when the UNC System Board of Governors adopted “internationalization” as one of six strategic directions for its long-range plan. Then UNC-Chapel Hill Chancellor James Moeser stated his commitment and intent to “extend Carolina’s global presence, research, and teaching.” The FedEx Global Education Center is a physical manifestation of this commitment.

In 2007, the university launched the Institute for Global Health & Infectious Diseases to complement the globalization efforts of the main campus. Health affairs faculty work in well over 50 countries in a wide variety of research, education and service capacities. These activities involve dentists and nurses, public health workers and physicians, and every kind of student imaginable.

UNC is one of a very small number of American universities with a school for each of the health sciences: medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, nursing, and public health. Even more distinctive is the fact that all of the schools are adjacent to or facing one another and share one of the best health sciences libraries in the country. This physical proximity is a symbol of the collaboration and synergy that this university is known for.

I believe that UNC has the potential to become a truly exemplary global university and it is my privilege to direct the Institute for Global Health & Infectious Diseases in service of that vision.


Myron S. Cohen, MD
Yeargan-Bate Eminent Professor of Medicine, Microbiology and Immunology, and Epidemiology
Director, Institute for Global Health & Infectious Diseases