Global Liberal Studies and Global Public Health (BA)

Program Description

The joint undergraduate program in Global Liberal Studies (GLS) and Global Public Health (GPH) provides students with an opportunity to explore a wide range of academic topics that focus on public health issues and the liberal arts through a global lens. The GPH core courses engage students in the study of health issues that impact many people around the world, while the innovative GLS curriculum will enable them to explore how these discussions resonate with other areas of inquiry and human experience, such as law, ethics, religion, politics, human rights, economic development, etc.

In GLS, students take a humanistic approach to Global Studies through the study of significant literature, arts, politics, philosophy, and history from around the world. All GLS courses are seminar-style and taught by full-time faculty who complement classroom learning with visits to museums, theaters, and landmarks to experience the global cultural works in person. GLS students specialize in one of six concentrations and develop the intellectual framework for understanding globalization. As a junior, GLS students test their theoretical understanding against lived experiences during an immersive year abroad, a rare opportunity to spend a full academic year studying at one of NYU’s global academic centers. The junior year also features experiential learning through a relevant internship or fieldwork, integrating classroom learning with professional challenges. In their senior year, GLS students bring all of their studies and experience to bear on an honors-level thesis that integrates what they have learned of a particular culture into an overarching global context. Working closely with faculty advisors, GLS students will define, research, and craft a capstone project over the course of the year which reflects their academic interest in globalism and public health.

The School of Global Public Health at NYU offers thirteen innovative undergraduate combined majors in collaboration with several of NYU’s prestigious schools, including the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS), Steinhardt, Silver, and Meyers. These combined majors allow you to tailor your degree to accommodate both your passion for public health as well as your interest in another complementary field, from nursing to nutrition to anthropology. The program offers courses that combine elements of research, policy, and practice, giving you an essential conceptual and theoretical foundation that is complemented by practical, real-world experience. All GPH majors--regardless of school--are required to complete 6 public health core courses (24 credits), one to three combined major electives, 90 hours of a public health experiential learning internship, and a semester-long study away experience at one of NYU's global sites. Majoring in Global Public Health will prepare you for entry into not-for-profits, government organizations, social service agencies, international health services and programs, as well as provide excellent preparation for further public health study at the masters, doctoral and professional school levels, including GPH’s own Master of Public Health program.

Connecting Your Interests

The joint major in GLS and GPH is ideal for students interested in:

  • Public Health Services
  • Environmental Health & Sustainability
  • Public Policy & Advocacy
  • Community Health & Development
  • Epidemics & Pandemics
  • Cultural Studies
  • Social Services
  • Wellness and Counseling
  • Food and Drugs
  • Other areas focused on public health

The joint major would allow students to explore topics pertaining to global public health in a distinctive fashion, often leading to employment opportunities in fields like government, nonprofit and advocacy organizations, and health and environmental professions.

Diversity and Inclusion

Both GLS and GPH strive to create diverse and inclusive academic and social environments for their students and other community members. Both academic communities are committed to respecting difference and maximizing learning through conversation across multiple identities, experiences, and viewpoints. Both programs offer diverse academic courses that address global, socially and culturally diverse and inclusive content.


New York University's Office of Undergraduate Admissions supports the application process for all undergraduate programs at NYU.  For additional information about undergraduate admissions, including application requirements, see How to Apply