Education at OHSU

OHSU Global Southeast Asia and Oceania

OHSU is improving health on a global scale. We do so through education, research and clinical initiatives. We partner with public and private institutions as well as programs around the world.


Be a global platform for OHSU to achieve its vision for healing, teaching, and discovery.

Guiding principles

Meeting local priorities

Building capacity and teaching

Establishing sustainability and funding

Scholarships for OHSU medical student placements in Southeast and South Asia

Each year, the Kathryn Robertson Endowment provides learning and research opportunities for OHSU students. It allows learners and educators to exchange ideas, to work on local priorities and to improve global health.

Three are four approved elective experiences available to students. Partner institutions help us provide these experiences.

1. Four-week clinical rotation at Faculty of Siriraj of Mahidol University in Bangkok, Thailand.

2.  Four-week combination clinical rotation and cross border health course at Mae Fah Luang University in Chiang Rai, Thailand.

3.  Three-week field public health field experience in Fiji, Nepal or India in partnership with faculty from the University of Western Australia.

4. Assist with communicable and non-communicable disease research collaborations together with Faculty of Siriraj of Mahidol University in Bangkok, Thailand.

Appropriate overseas experiences include projects related to public and population health, health education, clinical practice and research.  OHSU students in good academic standing can apply for competitive awards up to $2,000.  Students will spend at least three weeks at their overseas site. Exceptions to this requirement will be made on a case-by-case basis.  Awards are made during the academic year and are subject to available funding. 

Research opportunities in Southeast Asia

Oregon Health & Science University partners with Siriraj Medical School at Mahidol University to help both institutions expand learning and clinical capacity.  Both institutions share research salary support to investigate innovative approaches for the prevention and treatment of HIV, TB and Dengue Fever.

This initiative includes hiring researchers to work between both institutions. Therefore, OHSU has access to colleagues who work at the forefront in these fields. OHSU can also use shared clinical specimens for research efforts in Oregon. Thai researchers benefit from access to learning from innovators at OHSU. They receive support with grant opportunities from US based donors and the National Institutes of Health.

The initiative seeks grant funding to make this research collaboration more robust and inclusive over time. We will invite students to support these ongoing research collaborations when appropriate.

GREAT - Global Health Research, Education & Training Program

OHSU Global Southeast Asia also has forged a relationship with a leading research university in northern Thailand – Mae Fah Luang University in Chiang Rai Thailand. We are now working to support their request to build capacity for clinical, epidemiologic and operations research in Thailand.   We will select two OHSU M.D./Ph.D. students to provide teaching support to this training every year.

 MFU faculty are busy at work applying the concepts taught at the annual Global Research Education and Training (GREAT) program held in Chiang Rai, Thailand.  At the end of a busy week of small and large group instruction, faculty members are able to translate newly learned skills into grant proposals and/or manuscripts which leads to improved community health as well as career satisfaction.
MFU faculty are busy at work applying the concepts taught at the annual Global Research Education and Training (GREAT) program held in Chiang Rai, Thailand. At the end of a busy week of small and large group instruction, faculty members are able to translate newly learned skills into grant proposals and/or manuscripts which leads to improved community health as well as career satisfaction.

Partnership institutions

OHSU partners with three universities in two different countries.

Mahidol University

In 2015, OHSU Global partnered with a leading University in Bangkok, Thailand, Mahidol University. The partnership focuses on a robust exchange in educational and research. As part of this collaboration, OHSU has hosted students from across schools of medicine, nursing, dentistry and public health from Thailand. In exchange, the Faculties of Medicine at Siriraj Hospital host clinical experiences for OHSU students in Thailand.

This global health immersion experience exposes OHSU students to factors contributing to health and disease through experiential clinical learning in Southeast Asia. Students have the opportunity to both expand and refine their clinical skills. They also may expand research skills in diverse clinical settings. They will face the burdens of disease, resources, diagnostic algorithms, treatment algorithms and health systems that differ widely from a US medical setting.

Mae Fah Luang University (MFU)

Mae Fah Luang University (MFU) is a twenty-year-old public and comprehensive University located in Chiang Rai of northern Thailand. This university provides a rural site experience for faculty, residents and students from all schools. All participants experience cross border medicine and tropical diseases in patients from Myanmar, rural Thailand, northern Laos, China and Cambodia.

MFU also:

conducts patient care in English
has ample housing for visitors
needs to build capacity in primary care and other basic science research areas
provides a beautiful and safe learning site

A bird's eye view of Mae Fah Luang University

The University of Western Australia (UWA)

The University of Western Australia (UWA) in Perth is a top 100 university in the world.  Established in 1911, this public research university is the sixth oldest university in Australia. It has produced over 100 Rhodes scholars as well as two Nobel laureates.   UWA is an ideal partner as it brings with it a capacity for rotations for our Southeast Asian partners. It also allows for expanded learning opportunities for OHSU students to join UWA students with field experiences led by UWA faculty in India, Fiji or Nepal every year.

Philanthropic initiatives

Myanmar Casey Eye Institute

Casey Eye Institute partnered with OHSU Global and is determined to bring positive change to eye care in Myanmar. After two years of preliminary evaluations and planning, Casey Eye Institute has initiated an exciting new relationship with four medical institutions in S.E. Asia. Casey Eye Institute, along with Mandalay Eye Hospital (Myanmar), monastery-led Tipitaka Eye Hospital (Myanmar), Siriraj Medical School (Thailand) and BDMS/Bangkok Hospital System (Thailand), are building a better future and brighter prognosis for the people of Myanmar.

The collaboration between these organizations includes four main programs:

A Mid-level Ophthalmic Personnel Training Program
a pediatric vision health screening program
an improved health records database
an ophthalmic specialty fellowship program


Together with the Lao University Health Sciences and the U.S. Department of Defense, OHSU Global in Southeast helped to design, fund and provide technical support to create and operate a clinical nutrition training program where leading clinicians, nutritionists and researchers train local nutrition experts to study and initiate new approaches to improve the state of nutrition in Laos for generations.

Annual Kathryn Robertson Memorial Lecture in Global Health (KRL)

The annual Kathryn Robertson Memorial Lecture has become one of the most widely anticipated and prestigious events on the OHSU campus.  Each year it allows a world-renown expert to address an issue of global significance.

2020 Barry James Marshall, Nobel Laureate, Medicine: Man vs. Helicobacter – POSTPONED

2019 Senator Mechai Viravaidya: The land of smiles and condoms

2018 Eric Goosby: TB-Tackling the world's leading infectious disease killer

2017 Kent Brantley: Fighting Ebola: Choosing Compassion over fear

2016 Mark Rosenberg: reducing gun violence through science and collaboration

2015 Nicholas Kristof: Pathways to becoming a global citizen

2014 Harvey Fineberg: US Health in International Perspective

2013 Howard Frumkin: Climate Change: Grand Challenge for Global Health

2012 Robert Schooley: Antiretroviral treatment in HIV-infected individuals

2011 Anne Marie Slaughter: The Health of our World