Parasitology, public health expert to lead Ross' One Health Center
The One Health Center for Zoonoses and Tropical Veterinary Medicine at Ross University in Basseterre, St. Kitts, will now be under the direction of Arve Lee Willingham, DVM, PhD. According to the university, Willingham will promote collaborative research opportunities with organizations around the world and encourage interdisciplinary research between the School of Veterinary Medicine’s research centers and other veterinary medicine and public health institutions.
“At our One Health Center, we plan to study such diseases to understand how different infectious agents affect people’s health and livelihoods, especially within the tropical and lesser-developed Caribbean region,” Willingham says. Elaine Watson, dean of the Ross School of Veterinary Medicine, says, “The new center is an important component in our mission to educate the next generation of veterinarians, while improving the health and sustainability of the Caribbean region, crucially located on the doorstep of the Americas. Dr. Willingham’s wide international experience and his research background are central in its development.”
The university touts Willingham’s more than two decades of global travel and dedication to understanding and combating parasitic zoonotic diseases. Between 2010 and 2013, Willingham worked at the World Health Organization’s Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases in Geneva, Switzerland. There, he identified global research needs for the environment, agriculture and infectious diseases, as well as helminth and zoonotic diseases. His research has received numerous awards, including a Fulbright Fellowship and recognition from the American Veterinary Medical Association and the American Association of Veterinary Parasitologists.