Prospective Grad School Students Meet Schools Face-to-Face at the Idealist Graduate Degree Fairs for the Public Good

From a recent grad fair (via Julia Smith)

Originally posted on the Idealist homepage blog by Jung Fitzpatrick, who manages Idealist’s Public Service Graduate Education Resource Center.

Tomorrow we’ll kick off the 2009 fall season of our Graduate Degree Fairs for the Public Good, but instead of doing the normal spiel about where (see the full list of cities) and when (Sept. 10th through Nov. 3rd), I thought I’d step back and answer the question: What are “graduate degrees for the public good”?

It’s a question I get often. Basically it’s any graduate degree that will help you make the difference you want to see in the world.

Want to provide better services for the homeless community? Depending on the approach you’re interested in, a degree in social work or public health could prepare you to provide direct service, or one in nonprofit management could help you run a homeless shelter more efficiently.

If you’re passionate about finding solutions to global climate change, maybe a degree in public policy and a certificate in environmental studies? Or the reverse? If you’re working with both nonprofit and governmental organizations having a degree in public administration might also be useful. If you want to work internationally on the issue, you may also consider a degree in international affairs.

There is no one way to go about making a difference – and those are just some examples of the many graduate education options that a prospective graduate student might consider in each case! At our grad fairs you can meet representatives from a wide variety of international social impact graduate programs and learn more about how their degree offerings can help you serve the public good.

To register (for free!) please click here and then click on the city where you’d like to attend a fair. If you register, you’ll get reminders, tips, and any last minute updates for the event.

Thanks for helping us help you make the world a better place. We’ll see you at the grad fairs!

For more about graduate degrees, follow along on Facebook or Twitter @gradresources. Also check out graduate education-related podcasts.

Service Opp: Faiths Act Fellows Combat Malaria

A cohort of 30 young people, representing many faiths, raise awareness and resources to fight deaths caused by malaria.


Recognizing that religious pluralism can either be a source of conflict or cause for cooperation, many groups around the world strive to bring young people of diverse faiths together—to act on the values their faiths hold in common. Serving together deepens the faith commitment of each person, while also enabling each to see another perspective.

A project launched by the Tony Blair Faith Foundation, and coordinated by Malaria No More and the Interfaith Youth Core, the Faiths Act Fellows work towards achieving the United Nation’s Millenium Development Goals regarding malaria. From the Tony Blair Faith Foundation website:

The disease kills over a million vulnerable people every year, mainly young children and women in Africa. It costs Africa over $12 billion a year in health costs and lost productivity, making poor countries even poorer. Worldwide, there are more than 350 million malaria infections each year. More than 1 million of these cases end in death; others scar their victims for life with permanent brain damage.

Fellows come from the United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada. They train for two months in London, Chicago, and with primary health care partners in Africa — and then return to their home countries for 8 months of full-time, stipended service.

Fellows serve in faith-based organizations that also work on malaria-related issues. From the website:

Fellows will accomplish this primarily by doing outreach presentations and workshops for young people and their allies in local faith communities, including congregations, faith-based schools and religious or inter-religious student groups at local universities. Following their initial presentations and workshops, the Fellows will provide counsel and additional training to each active group as they enact their ideas, helping to ensure collective success in inter-religious partnerships and in raising awareness and life-saving funds.

The application is due January 15.


If you are interested in helping out but can’t apply to become a fellow, here are some other ways to get involved with the Faiths Act Campaign. Also check out the interfaith social network Bridge Builders on Ning, operated by the Interfaith Youth Core.

To learn more about the interfaith youth movement, check out the work of the Interfaith Youth Core based in Chicago, and read its founder Eboo Patel’s memoir Acts of Faith: The Story of an American Muslim, the Struggle for the Soul of a Generation.

* Photo above taken from the Tony Blair Faith Foundation, and copyright Lucas Foglia.

Dr. Oz’s Day of Zumba Action

Dr. Oz on Oprah

Dr. Oz on The Oprah Winfrey Show

Yeah, I know, this isn’t a competition.

But I challenge anyone to come up with a more imaginative, more entertaining way to highlight the national service movement and health issues than a zumba Latin dance-off for diabetes.

That’s how Dr. Mehmet Oz—heart surgeon, author, frequent Oprah guest, and HealthCorps founder—is participating in the Day of Action, Sept. 27. In doing so, he will join over 2,500 other community service projects taking place all over the United States as part of Service Nation, the campaign for more citizen service and community activism.

Dr. Oz will lead a zumba Latin dance demonstration of his own with over 200 participants as part of the American Diabetes Association‘s Diabetes Expo at the Javits Center in Manhattan. The effort aims to highlight the impact of national service and HealthCorps’s commitment to fighting diabetes and childhood obesity.

Dr. Oz says, “We can’t remedy our country’s health crisis by legislating solutions. I created HealthCorps to send volunteers to our nation’s high schools to mentor their adopted brothers and sisters. They’re making health cool and hip. Besides eating smart and exercising wisely, they’re teaching mental resilience and addressing underserved communities.”

HealthCorps is a school-based peer mentoring and community outreach program that deploys recent college graduates to empower teens to become educated consumers and health activists.

HealthCorps seeks to expand its 45-school program to serve more states, develop even more of an emphasis on consumer education, and encourage all Americans to prioritize prevention and personal responsibility.

HealthCorps members typically go on to attend medical school or engage in other public health careers.

Dr. Oz fans will be glad to hear that in September 2009 he’s set to host “The Dr. Oz Show,” a syndicated talk show produced by Oprah’s Harpo Productions.

In a week, communities all over the United States will answer the call to serve on Service Nation’s Day of Action, Sept. 27th. staff are organizing our first-ever Youth Action Fair in New York.

Find a project to participate in, in your community.

But…what is zumba? This is the shortest (and cutest) demo I could find on Youtube:

Watch Dr. Oz speak (not dance) during the Day of Action event:

Here is the Zumba class that took place that day: