Elms College held its 87th commencement ceremony at 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 19, 2018, at the MassMutual Center, Springfield.

Commencement Speaker

Louise Ivers, MB, B.Ch., MD, MPH, DTM&H

Eminent global health leader Louise Ivers, MB, B.Ch., MD, MPH, DTM&H, has devoted her professional career to global policy and advocacy work to improve health equity.

Her story of working to improving healthcare delivery in resource-poor settings and providing care to the poor in both rural and urban areas will serve as a powerful reminder to this year’s graduates that they too can work to effect positive change in the world and advocate for people in need.

Ivers currently serves as the executive director of the Center for Global Health at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston and sits on the board of directors of the St. Boniface Haiti Foundation, which is dedicated to providing essential health services to the people of Southern Haiti, especially the most vulnerable.

Previously, she was an associate physician in the Division of Global Health Equity at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH), an associate professor of global health and social medicine, and associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School. She also has served as a senior health and policy advisor to PIH as a member of the PIH executive leadership team, working to support the implementation of strategy across 10 countries. In addition to expanding access to healthcare for the poor, Ivers has contributed to published research articles on HIV/AIDS, food insecurity, and cholera treatment and prevention.

She has worked on healthcare delivery in India, Southeast Asia, and Africa. During her time as faculty at BWH, she was based in Haiti to serve as clinical director and then chief of mission for Partners In Health (PIH) Haiti. She led responses to the major earthquake in Haiti in 2010 and the subsequent cholera epidemic.

Ivers conducts independently funded research focused on barriers to healthcare delivery and the impact of food assistance on livelihoods of people living with HIV infection in rural Haiti. She is actively engaged in evaluating comprehensive responses to cholera.

She has served as an advisor to the World Health Organization, where she is currently a delegate to the WHO Global Task Force for Cholera Control, and the Haitian Ministry of Health. She has collaborated with the U.S. government, with EU multilateral non-governmental organizations, and with private industry partners.

In addition, Ivers mentors Haitian, American, and Irish physicians and students in global health implementation and research. She is the editor of a textbook on food insecurity and public health, and over 50 peer-reviewed published papers and chapters on global health issues.

Ivers graduated from University College Dublin, where she received both her professional medical degrees and a research doctorate in medicine. She completed residency in internal medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, and a fellowship in infectious diseases at the combined Harvard Infectious Diseases program at MGH and Brigham and Women’s Hospital. She earned a diploma in tropical medicine and hygiene from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, and a master’s degree in public health from the Harvard School of Public Health.