University approves new certificates in global health, energy

The University has approved two new undergraduate certificate programs for the 2008-09 academic year, one focusing on sustainable energy and another on global health and health policy.

Both interdisciplinary programs tackle major issues facing the world community, and they bring together the research Princeton faculty members are doing in these areas with students interested in finding solutions to critical problems in the 21st century.

The Program in Global Health and Health Policy will examine both U.S. and global health issues through the study of the determinants, consequences and patterns of diseases across societies; the role of medical technologies and interventions in health improvements; and the economic, political and social factors that shape public health.

The program, a collaborative effort by faculty in the natural and social sciences, will be housed within the Center for Health and Wellbeing in the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.

"This new certificate program will enable Princeton undergraduates to explore issues related to public health more comprehensively, while investigating some of the most serious problems of our time," said Christina Paxson, director of the Center for Health and Wellbeing. "The program's multidisciplinary approach and focus on experiential learning will help students prepare for careers or graduate work in domestic or international health, well-being and health policy."

The program of study will include two core courses, three elective courses, a health-related summer research project or internship after the junior year and a health-related senior thesis or independent work project. The courses come from two dozen academic departments, programs and centers across the University.

For more information, visit the program website.

The Program in Sustainable Energy will prepare students for careers or graduate education in energy science and education through the study of energy systems and their impact on climate and the environment; the ability to analyze, design and develop innovative energy technologies; and an understanding of Earth, global climate and environmental change from the perspectives of engineering, technology and policy.

"Energy and climate change is the world's top issue not only for sustainable economic growth, but for the Earth's environment and the harmony of human life," said Yiguang Ju, the program director and an associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering. "Princeton is taking a lead in educating future leaders to make wise decisions about energy policy and provide innovative technologies for sustainable energy systems. The program will give students a broad understanding of the current energy resources, technologies for energy conversion and storage, the new technologies on the horizon, and their impact on environment and climate."

To earn the certificate, students will be required to take six courses (two core courses, four electives) and incorporate sustainable energy into their senior independent work projects or theses. Students also will be encouraged to get firsthand experience in the field through internships with companies, government agencies and university laboratories.

Nearly a dozen academic departments and programs are represented in the program's core courses and electives.

For more information, visit the program website.