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2017 International Engagement Award Recipients

Ohio State-Malawi TeamImproving access to preventative and curative care to communities in rural Malawi and training doctors in China on issues critical to reducing pediatric violence and injury are two Ohio State projects recognized for their international impact. “The Umoyo wa Thanzi Research Collaborative” is the recipient of the Emerging International Engagement Award and the “China Pediatric Violence and Injury Prevention and Research International Program” is the recipient of the Distinguished International Engagement Award.

The Offices of Outreach and Engagement, International Affairs, Service-Learning, Undergraduate Education and Student Life recognize faculty, staff, students and community partners annually for outstanding achievement at the University Engagement Recognition Awards ceremony.

Emerging International Engagement Award

The Umoyo wa Thanzi dynamic research collaboration based in rural Malawi and led by Alison Norris, MD in the College of Public Health allows faculty and students from Ohio State and the Malawi College of Medicine to work alongside staff from the non-profit organization, Child Legacy International, to better understand the healthcare decision-making process, and improve access to preventative and curative care. The collaborative now employs five full-time Malawian researchers and conducts clinic-based studies of tuberculosis, sexual health, community-based studies of cervical cancer, reproductive health decision-making and injuries to women during prolonged childbirth.

Researchers from the United States and Malawi work side-by-side to design and conduct studies aimed at understanding and addressing the multitude of factors contributing to the public health problems in the community. For example, the group’s study of tuberculosis treatment helped Child Legacy to establish itself as a certified tuberculosis treatment center. The community-based educational intervention focused on cervical cancer and clinic-based sexual health study were critical to the creation of a cervical cancer screening program at Child Legacy. The ultimate goal is to design culturally acceptable interventions to improve health and well-being among rural women and men in the regions.

Ohio State partners include: Alison Norris and Abigail Shoben, College of Public Health; Abigail Norris Turner, College of Medicine; Jesse Kwiek, John Casterline and Ellen Peters, College of Arts and Sciences. As an award recipient, the project will receive $1,000 to support the growth of its programming.

Distinguished International Engagement Award

Henry Xiang with ColleaguesThe “Nationwide Children’s Hospital, China Pediatric Violence and Injury Prevention and Research International Program, led by Henry Xiang, MD, in the College of Medicine, has worked diligently since 2004 to provide training opportunities to Chinese scholar and professionals on issues critical for reducing pediatric violence and injuries. The project strives to expand collaborative research activities between the injury control research centers and researchers in the United States and China, and provide opportunities for Ohio State College of Medicine residents, fellows and physicians to travel to the People’s Republic of China to enhance their knowledge and skills in pediatric emergency medical care at a network of Chinese children’s hospitals.

This international program offers Ohio State researchers opportunities to work with Chinese colleagues to reduce injury-related pediatric death and disability. The collaborative projects continually improve scientific understanding of the epidemiology, biomechanics, prevention, acute treatment and rehabilitation of pediatric violence and injuries in China. More than 200 mid- level and senior researchers in China have received comprehensive training through the program, and a critical mass of professionals have emerged as leaders internationally in pediatric violence and injury prevention in China. As an award recipient, the project will receive $3,000 to support its continued success.

For more information about the University Outreach and Engagement Awards, visit the Outreach and Engagement website.