Award for Global Engagement

2008 Recipients

Phillip K. Peterson and Paul G. Quie

Dr. Phillip Peterson and Dr. Paul Quie, founding and current co-directors of the International Medical Educational and Research (IMER) program, have established a legacy of globalization of healthcare issues in the Medical School. Since its inception in 1998, IMER has become a force for providing global experiences for students and faculty and improving health conditions here and abroad. It is the shared vision of Dr. Peterson and Dr. Quie that has made IMER so successful.

The two doctors understand the crucial role of medicine and healthcare in a world in which all people are connected. They share the value in this global health community that the doctors of tomorrow must embrace the changing world with unique skills, cultural competence, compassion, and an understanding of universal human rights. The active participation of medical students and faculty in diverse environments and countries of need increase their understanding of the complexity of global health.

Because of IMER, the Medical School has affiliation agreements or memorandums of understanding with medical schools and healthcare institutions throughout the world from India to Ecuador. Dr. Peterson and Dr. Quie have visited and evaluated nearly all of these institutions. Medical students and faculty from throughout the world come to the University to participate in clinical, education, and research programs. And nearly a third of Medical School graduates have a global experience during their medical education. These students are competent in immigration health, are able to better care for refugees in our state, understand health and human rights in a more complete fashion, and are able to ensure healthcare to all irrespective of their racial or socio-economic background.

The development of global outreach programs in India has been a major initiative of IMER. The relationship pioneered by Dr. Peterson and Dr. Quie has resulted in the establishment of the University of Minnesota Physicians Bone Marrow Transplant program at the Manipal Specialty Hospital in Bangalore, India—a unique program and the first international clinical program for the University of Minnesota Physicians.

Dr. Peterson and Dr. Quie share the view that human rights violations underlie many of the health disparities in the developing world and in immigrant populations in the United States, and they remain committed to developing interdisciplinary alliances. Beyond the Medical School, IMER has collaborated with the Law School's Center for Human Rights and sponsored the first symposium at the University on health and human rights. Over the past several years, IMER has partnered with the schools of Public Health and Nursing in sponsoring symposia on human rights issues related to health.

Both men are also outstanding scientists, whose work has contributed greatly to health worldwide. Dr. Peterson's studies of HIV and the central nervous system are widely cited, while Dr. Quie has pioneered studies on neureophil function. As infectious disease research scientists, they have had an impact through their trainees well beyond the borders of the United States.

Dr. Peterson and Dr. Quie both understand the value of global engagement in the areas of medical education, sharing of knowledge, enhancing global health care understanding, facilitating global research in the health field, and bringing the University within the reach of all countries and people with similar interests, missions, and goals. Their leadership has transformed the University’s Medical School and the Department of Medicine into one that is truly global in reach and a leader in global medicine, education, research, and care delivery.