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Actions & Impact

Read about UWC-USA students, alumni, and faculty who are making a difference locally and globally.

Announcing a Winner!
Posted 04/14/2016 10:40AM

UWC-USA is pleased to announce Dr. Julie Lyn Hall '84 as the recipient of the first annual UWC-USA Alumni Impact Award. Over a professional career spanning more than 25 years, Julie has made major contributions to global public health and the response to major natural disasters.

Dr. Hall's career to date has been one of service to the international community, exemplifying the mission of the UWC movement. It has required a commitment by her family to living in different countries and a willingness to move, sometimes at very short notice, as she has tackled new missions and challenges.

Dr. Hall's most notable contributions include:

  • Significant involvement in the development and implementation of surveillance and response systems to the SARS and avian influenza outbreaks in China from 2003 to 2007; and
  • leading the World Health Organization's response to Typhoon Haiyan, one of the strongest typhoons ever recorded, which killed almost 7,000 people, injured tens of thousands, devastated large parts of the Philippines and displaced 16 million people, in November 2013.

Dr. Hall's contributions have been made in a number of senior roles, including in the World Health Organization, UNICEF, the UN Secretary General's Office in Geneva, the Australian Government and, most recently, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

In her work, Dr. Hall has drawn on the experiences and capabilities she developed and demonstrated as a UWC student over three decades ago: most notably, her capacity to communicate and lead in cross-cultural settings, bridging across both the micro and macro, while maintaining a strong, calm determination and great resilience and integrity.

In June 2007, Dr Hall was awarded a MBE (Member of the British Empire) in the Queen's Birthday Honours list. This award was provided in recognition of Dr Hall's contribution to 'health protection globally, especially in China'.

Dr Hall's involvement in health and development commenced as shortly after her UWC graduation in 1984, when she undertook volunteer work for the Red Cross in Baguio City in the Philippines.

Dr Hall was WHO Coordinator for Communicable Disease Surveillance and Response Team in Beijing from 2003 to 2006.

Dr Hall was elected by her peers as a Fellow of the Faculty of Public Health in 2008, the highest level of membership of this distinguished organization (which is the standard setting body for specialists in public health in the United Kingdom).

In 2007 Dr Hall was appointed as a principal medical adviser by the Australian Government Department of Health. Among other things, this senior position saw her acting, on occasion, as the Chief Medical Officer of Australia, the most senior government health officer in Australia.

Dr Hall returned to the United Nations system in late 2008. In 2013 she was appointed World Health Organization Representative for the Philippines. It was in this role that Dr Hall led the international health response to one of the strongest tropical cyclones ever experienced globally. Dr. Hall drove the significant health response in the immediate aftermath of the typhoon and worked tirelessly in the months and year after the typhoon to help rebuild the health infrastructure, medical supply chains and maternal and child health care support to assist the approximately 16 million people this natural disaster affected.

Dr Hall's deep and unique experience is recognized by her peers in international public health and she has presented internationally on the lessons learnt from the response to Typhoon Haiyan.

In late 2015, Dr Hall was appointed Head of Health of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, based in Geneva.

Dr Hall qualified as a medical doctor from St Thomas's Medical School, London, in 1991. She subsequently undertook further specialist medical training in the UK and Australia. In 1998, Dr Hall completed a Masters in Public Health at James Cook University in northern Australia, focused on promoting public health in rural and remote communities.

Meet Mzwakithi Shongwe, '12, who came to UWC-USA from Swaziland.


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UWC-USA is one of 16 UWCs on five continents. Other countries that have UWCs include Armenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Canada, China, Costa Rica, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Singapore, Swaziland, and Wales.


UWC-USA students perform more than 18,700 hours of service every year through our association with 25 community partners. More than 2,500 people in Las Vegas, N.M. and the surrounding community have benefited from service projects led by UWC-USA students.


UWC-USA has 228 students representing more than 70 countries, from Armenia to Zimbabwe. Eleven students come from countries identified as conflict regions. Representation within our student body includes: Africa 10%, Asia 28%, Europe 29%, North America 23%, South America 10%.


Students don’t apply directly to the school; they are selected by committees in their home countries based on academic achievement, leadership, and curiosity about and involvement with global events and cultures.


Philanthropist Shelby Davis has created a $40 million endowment that provides 50 U.S. students with full scholarships to attend a UWC every year.


Our more than 3,357 UWC-USA alumni are spread across the globe: North America 26%, Latin America and Caribbean 16%, Africa 10%, Middle East 6%, Asia 14%, Europe 21%, Pacific 2%


UWC-USA offers the International Baccalaureate diploma program. Students can choose from IB classes in 28 subjects – a remarkable number given the size of the school.

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