Global Child Health Master’s Program

An exceptional degree from one of the world's leading institutions in pediatric global health.


Earn a unique Master of Science (M.S.) degree in Global Child Health from the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. Developed in collaboration with the St. Jude Department of Global Pediatric Medicine, the program is designed to offer students transformative education needed to enhance the treatment and care of childhood cancers and catastrophic illnesses in an evolving world.

Students learn to identify and generate evidence needed to improve child health in target environments. By learning to apply systematic, scientific, evidence-based approaches, students are able to facilitate delivery of timely, comprehensive and effective health care programs to children who need it. The Global Child Health program equips students to work with leaders across disciplines, critically examine assumptions and beliefs, and engage in an invigorating, collaborative quest for learning and personal development.

Throughout the program, students are supported with exceptional resources, an integrated online course of study, on-campus workshops and experiences, and mentorship by world-renowned faculty and thought leaders in pediatric global health and education. Students can also leverage partnerships St. Jude has formed with collaborators around the globe.

The 30-credit program is offered as a two-year, interdisciplinary degree program, based on flexible learning.

  1. Students at orientation in meeting room.

    Applications are open between August 30 and December 1, 2019. The program begins in July 2020.

    Currently, the program can only accept applications from Tennessee residents and international (non-US) residents. 

    How to Apply

    Submit an online application and additional supplemental materials, including:

    • a curriculum vitae describing in full detail your academic background, including degrees, work experience, awards, publications, presentations and other achievements
    • three-page (single spaced, 11- or 12-point font) personal statement outlining:
      • your personal motivation for pursuing the MS in Global Child Health
      • what differentiates you as an applicant: (your strengths, areas to improve, research interests, academic interests, professional interests and leadership potential)
      •  your professional goals upon completion of the program, including how your past experiences and training have contributed to your future goals
      • why the MS in Global Child Health, at this point in your career, is the best way to attain those goals
    • unofficial transcripts, copies of academic records, and degrees or diplomas from all post-secondary schools attended. These must be submitted via the online application. Transcripts not in English must be accompanied by a certified word-by-word, English translation and uploaded online during the application process.
      Please note: Official transcripts (or notarized copies of official transcripts) of academic records will be required for admitted candidates upon matriculation; these must be sent directly from the institution’s registrar’s office to the registrar of the Graduate School.
    • letters of reference from three mentors, professors or supervisors. The letters must be submitted directly via the online application system and should describe your academic successes, professional background, potential for achievement at the graduate level and capacity for creative, self-directed study.
    • Applicants that are non-native speakers of English may be required to take an English proficiency examination (TOEFL/IELTS/Duolingo English Test). English language proficiency will be evaluated as part of the interview.  After the interview, should the Admissions Committee determine it necessary, an applicant may be required to take an English proficiency examination.  Applicants that have completed any post-secondary studies in English will be exempted from English-language testing.

      Results that are no more than three (3) years old from the TOEFL, IELTS or the Duolingo English Test will be valid. Those asked to take an English proficiency examination will be required to score a 70 or higher on the TOEFL, a 6 or higher on the IELTS, or a 90 or higher on the Duolingo English Test.  Applicants who are asked to take an English proficiency exam can choose any of the three exams.

    Applications that are incomplete or missing supporting documents will not be considered.

    Approximate Admissions Timeline (2020 Entering Class)

    Dates Admission Process
    August 30, 2019 Application period opens
    December 1, 2019, 11:59 p.m. PST Applications must be submitted with all supporting materials
    January 31, 2020 Review of applications completed by Admissions Committee
    February 1-28, 2020 Candidate interviews conducted online
    March 6, 2020 Accepted candidates notified 


    Applicants must have one of the following combinations of academic credentials and work experience:

    • an advanced degree in a health-related field and at least three years of relevant work experience
    • bachelor’s degree and at least five years of relevant post-baccalaureate work experience in a relevant health-related field (eg. epidemiology, global health, health and social behavior, health management or health policy).

    Degrees must be awarded from an accredited institution from the U.S. or abroad.

    Environment of Equal Opportunity

    St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences encourages diversity on campus and does not discriminate on the basis of race, national origin, sex, genetic information, sexual orientation, age, religion, disability, veteran’s status, disabled veteran’s status or any other status protected by federal or Tennessee state law. The St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Graduate School is committed to creating an inclusive learning environment that provides cultural and ethnic diversity. Underrepresented minorities are encouraged to apply to the program.

  2. Exterior of Marlo Thomas center and Kay research tower

    Funding and Support

    The St. Jude Children's Research Hospital Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences offers a highly competitive package for accepted candidates. Institutional funding for the duration of the program includes:

    • a full tuition scholarship of $20,000 annually to cover the cost of the program
    • airfare, meals and lodging expenses for on-campus intersessions
    • laptop and IT support for the duration of studies
    • access to online learning resources

    Disability Resources

    The Graduate School has an obligation under the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) to provide reasonable accommodations for students, who self-identify with having disabilities.  The Graduate School offers qualified students with disabilities the opportunity for success through equal access and the means to participate in curricular and extracurricular activities. We provide individually tailored, comprehensive disability support services and programs in accordance with Federal and State disability law. We strive to create an inclusive, safe, and respectful environment for all students, and promote awareness and equity for all in our campus community.

    An administrative committee of Graduate School Deans will be formed on a case-by-case basis, to evaluate the provided disability documentation and determine eligibility for accommodations and implement reasonable accommodations for enrolled students.

  3. An Integrated Learning Environment

    Shaloo Puri, assistant dean, in front of white board

    The Global Child Health program maximizes student potential through guided learning with mentorship by world-renowned faculty. Students find that the program integrates academic training and experiential learning, with online classes for academic credit blended with on-campus programming. Students build an understanding of current and future developments in global child health.

    During the program, students learn to:

    • collect, analyze and synthesize relevant data to generate evidence using scientific analytical frameworks
    • demonstrate knowledge of child health issues, socioeconomic and political determinants and approaches to management and control of diseases
    • conduct analyses of disease burdens, and evaluate intervention strategies and approaches that address major child health issues, characterizing them within the context of health systems
    • demonstrate an understanding of the concepts, structures and implementation principles of global health systems, and application of lessons learned in different countries
    • develop evidence-based programs and policies from conception through innovative thinking and solutions that will strengthen health systems and address catastrophic childhood illnesses
    • apply leadership and management tools to effectively and efficiently implement programs and policies
    • enable positive change to strengthen health systems, improve health of children globally and reduce health inequities

    The program provides students learning opportunities to identify and implement the necessary systems level changes that improve the treatment and care of childhood cancers and catastrophic illnesses. These competencies empower the students to apply their education at the local, regional and global level, across multiple settings, and to accomplish identified goals in complex settings.

    Core Competencies

    The competency-based curriculum focuses on basic and applied research skills, global health systems and innovation and population science, tailored to the context of child health. The program equips students with a distinctive blend of:

    • knowledge, tools and skills to assemble and assimilate scientific evidence
    • applied analytical tools and integrative thinking to develop evidence-based policies and programs
    • leadership and management skills to bring about positive change

    Students are trained in three core competency domains: foundational knowledge, translational tools and implementation skills. Foundational knowledge includes training in the fundamentals of biostatistics and epidemiology, social sciences and child health issues in the context of global health and health systems. Students learn to translate their foundational knowledge into applied research, and evidence-based policies and programs. Implementation skills ultimately guide students towards becoming agents of change by strengthening their communication, leadership and management abilities.

    Foundational Knowledge
    (Concept and Theories)
    Translational Tools
    (Methods, Analysis and Synthesis)
    Implementation Skills
    Identify and Analyze Data Develop Evidence Based Policies and Programs Get Things Done in Complex Health Systems
    • Biostatistics and Epidemiology
    • Social sciences including Health Economics and Political Economy
    • Global Health and Health Systems
    • Quantitative, qualitative and mixed research methods 
    • Policy Analysis and Development
    • Evidence-based innovative thinking and solutions
    • Leadership, management and communication skills
  4. Year 1
    On-Campus Orientation
    (4 weeks; July-August 2020)
    Introduction to Online Learning and Math Preparation
    Ethical issues in Global Child Health and Research
    Leadership and Communication Workshops
    Fall Semester
    (September-December 2020)
    Principles of Biostatistics 
    Introduction to Epidemiology
    Foundations of Global Health 
    On-Campus Winter Intercession
    (2 weeks; January 2021)
    Leadership and Management Workshops
    Spring Semester
    (January-May 2021)
    Research Methods in Global Health
    Global Health Economics
    Introduction to Health Systems
    Year 2

    On-Campus Summer Intercession
    (4 weeks; July-August 2021)

    Global Child Health Practice and Leadership Workshops
    Thesis Seminar

    Fall Semester
    (September-December 2021)

    Child Health and Burden of Disease
    Political Economy of Global Health
    On-Campus Winter Intercession
    (2 weeks; January 2022)
    Workshops and Mid-term Thesis Report

    Spring Semester
    (January-May 2022)

    Strategic Management of Child Health Programs
    Innovation and Global Health Systems
    May-June 2022 Examinations
    June 2022 Graduation
    August 2022-Beyond Postgraduate Capstone


    Credit-bearing courses

    Man and woman talking in hallway

    Each course is delivered online through two weekly sessions of direct instruction, a maximum of three hours per week and an estimated six hours per week of out-of-class preparation over 15 to 16 weeks. Assignments are also posted online, and students complete and upload them to the course website within a stipulated time. Some courses may include group activities and team projects to foster a sense of community and collaboration.

    Instructors are available during office hours and by appointment. Multiple ways of communicating are available, although the primary mode is through emails with occasional video chats.

    Non-credit courses, on-site programming

    Students have mandatory non-credit workshops and seminars during their on-campus visits to the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. Orientation and visits during subsequent winter and summer intersessions focus on:

    1. Learning Online, which includes components of online learning, analysis of different types of learning environments and assisting the students plan for a personal learning environment. It helps identify areas of personal adjustment and time management required for success in online learning.
    2. Leadership and Management addressing issues related to self-mastery, team building, organizational and systems level leadership and conflict management.
    3. Communication with focus on public speaking, persuasive presentations and effective writing, including basic principles of effective prose and argument in advocacy and opinion pieces and policy writing.
    4. Ethics in Global Health, with presentations on ethical principles of scientific research, clinical care and global health.

    The thesis seminar supports students in producing a thesis of high academic standard, guiding them through structured and collaborative approaches to develop a project idea. Students are introduced to the challenges of writing and presenting a thesis and provided resources to support them through the process. They learn to review scientific literature, collaborate with diverse stakeholders, design action plans, develop proposals and write a final thesis.   

    A thesis adviser is assigned to each student to provide supportive supervision.

    Master's Thesis

    The thesis is the culmination of studies and the primary locus for translation of knowledge and skills that students acquired through the program. A selection of theses are considered for funding by the Department of Global Pediatric Medicine of St. Jude Children’s Hospital, after successful degree completion.

    The thesis will have two main components:

    • A project proposal addressing a global child health issue, with background, justification, process and measurable results expected to make positive change. Impact may be achieved through direct action to improve outcomes in populations and organizations or the creation of significant translational action that has potential to influence the change. This includes creating, implementing or evaluating a child health initiative; managing and enhancing existing initiatives; developing an organization’s strategy or policy initiatives; or conducting relevant applied research in select locations.
    • A personal journey statement designed to be an opportunity for the student to reflect on personal growth and development that has occurred throughout the program.
    • Stephen White, DPhil
      • Dean, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences

      Stephen White is from London, England and obtained his BSc in Biochemistry from Bristol University and his DPhil in Molecular Biophysics from Oxford University. Following postdoctoral fellowships at Oxford and the Max Planck Institute in Berlin, he moved to Brookhaven National Laboratory as a staff biophysicist in 1984. In 1990, he moved to Duke University Medical Center as an Associate Professor, and in 1996 was recruited to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital to establish the Department of Structural Biology. In 2015, he was asked to establish the new St. Jude Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. He now serves as the first Dean of the school.  His wife, Dr. Miguela Caniza, is an infectious disease clinician at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and a faculty member of the Graduate School and the Department of Global Pediatric Medicine.

    • Shaloo Puri, MBBS, DTCD, MPH, MPA
      • Assistant Dean, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
      • Director, Global Graduate Studies, Department of Global Pediatric Medicine

      Shaloo Puri is a global health leader with more than 24 years of progressive experience and transformational impact in multi-sectoral settings at national and global levels. She has held leadership positions in organizations that include Harvard University, World Economic Forum and World Health Organization (WHO), working in collaboration with USAID, Global Fund, Gates Foundation, World Bank, and public and private sectors. She is a thought leader with expertise in innovative multi-stakeholder partnerships across global health and health systems. In July 2018, Shaloo moved to St. Jude from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, where she headed the Doctor of Public Health Program.

      Shaloo is assistant dean of the Master of Science in Global Child Health Program. She directs the St. Jude Global Graduate Studies for the Department of Global Pediatric Medicine. She also guides and supports other Global Pediatric Medicine teams and transversal programs.

    • Carlos Rodriguez-Galindo, MD

      Carlos Rodriguez-Galindo, MD


      • EVP and Director, St. Jude Global
      • Chair, Department of Global Pediatric Medicine

      Carlos Rodriguez-Galindo, MD, serves as director of St. Jude Global and chair of the Department of Global Pediatric Medicine. He is also an executive vice president and holds the Four Stars of Chicago Endowed Chair in International Pediatric Research.

      Rodriguez-Galindo is leading an effort by St. Jude to ensure childhood cancer patients have access to quality care no matter where they live.

      A native of Barcelona, Spain, Rodriguez-Galindo first came to St. Jude in 1994 as a postdoctoral fellow. He went on to serve as a clinical researcher and faculty member for more than a decade before accepting a position in Boston. At the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Boston Children’s Hospital, he was director of the Pediatric Solid Tumor Program, medical director of the Clinical and Translational Investigations Program, and director of the Global Health Initiative in Pediatric Cancer and Blood Disorders. He also served as professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School.

      In 2015, Rodriguez-Galindo returned to Memphis to lead a new program and approach, called St. Jude Global, to address pediatric cancer worldwide. Currently, St. Jude has 24 partner sites in 17 countries and addresses 2.4 percent of the global childhood cancer burden. Under Rodriguez-Galindo’s leadership, the program aims to expand St. Jude’s reach to 30 percent in the next decade and to develop the intervention models to ensure access to quality care for all children with cancer in the world.

      Rodriguez-Galindo earned his medical degree from the Autonomous University of Barcelona.

    • Julie Laveglia, MA
      • Global Graduate Studies Project Coordinator for Global Pediatric Medicine

      Julie brings more than 15 years in the field of international education to her role at St. Jude, starting her career teaching English through the JET Program outside of Kyoto, Japan. Julie then returned to the U.S. to work at New York University with its Center for Global Affairs and NYU-in-Paris program. Afterward, Julie worked on the International Human Resources team at Lehman Brothers.

      She pivoted back to higher education and moved to Boston to work in the LASPAU Office of Harvard University, where she was primarily responsible for advising graduate-level Fulbright grantees from Central and South America. Most recently, Julie worked as the Assistant Director of Overseas Programs at Washington University in St. Louis where she worked closely with program and university partners in East and South Asia, the Middle East and Africa. 

      Julie was born and raised outside of Philadelphia in Southern New Jersey. She received her bachelor’s degree in Human Development and Environmental Science from Boston College. While an undergrad, she studied abroad at the Universidad de Sevilla. Julie received her M.A. in International Education from New York University.  While a graduate student, she interned with the Sister City Program within the New York City Commission to the United Nations.

      At St. Jude, Julie works with the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences in collaboration with the St. Jude Department of Global Pediatric Medicine on the design, implementation, management and evaluation of the Master of Science in Global Child Health program and postgraduate capstone projects. The program offers students a transformative education needed to enhance the treatment and care of childhood cancers and catastrophic illnesses in an evolving world.

The St. Jude Children's Research Hospital Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences is authorized for operation as a postsecondary educational institution by the Tennessee Higher Education Commission. In order to view detailed job placement and graduation information on the programs offered by the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, please visit

For updates on COVID-19, please read.