U of S student to lead international One Health council

PhD student Arinjay Banerjee has been selected secretary general of the international Students for One Health leadership council.

By Federica Giannelli

There were 100 applicants worldwide for the position on the first student body ever created by the One Health Commission, an international non-profit organization that aims to educate and improve the health and well-being of people, animals and the environment through a collaborative approach.

“When the commission put out a call for nominations for a new students’ body, I just could not say no. Representing the U of S at a global level is an absolute honour,” said Banerjee.

One Health is a signature area of the U of S. Banerjee has been promoting it at the institutional level but wanted to contribute toward global initiatives. He is the only Canadian university representative on the council.

“We need to integrate the health of people, animals and the environment to deal with emerging infectious diseases,” said Banerjee, who studies in the Department of Veterinary Microbiology in the Western College of Veterinary Medicine.  He credits his supervisor, Vikram Misra, for encouraging him to apply for the council post.

As a worldwide platform, the council will connect One Health student-run organizations across the globe, and encourage students to collaborate by organizing webinars and other initiatives.

In 2014, Banerjee received funding from NSERC to pursue an ITraP certificate from the U of S, an interdisciplinary program unique to Canada that allows students to receive international training in infectious diseases, food safety and public policy.

Read about Banerjee’s research in the 2017 Young Innovators series.