About the Arizona MDP


      View of Tucson from the University of Arizona's Environmental and Natural Resources Building 2 (ENR2), also pictured below. ENR2 is a state-of-the art building and home to the MDP Program.

The Arizona Difference 

Social injustice, economic inequality, climate change and environmental degradation all pose significant obstacles to achieving sustainable development across the globe. The MDP program at Arizona provides students unique opportunities to engage with these issues around the world and in the US/Mexico borderlands region. The pool of expertise among faculty and students is broad and gives MDP students the chance to explore such development challenges as managing natural resources among diverse stakeholders, improving adaptation to and mitigation of climate change, developing new models of agricultural production, and improving health services for poor and marginalized communities. 

Four Cornerstone Competency Areas

Consistent with the philosophy of the Global MDP network, the Arizona curriculum consists of four cornerstone competency areas:

Public health | Management | Social sciences | Natural sciences

In approaching these core areas, the Arizona MDP draws from an interdisciplinary pool of academic expertise and development practitioners, reflecting Arizona’s deep, residing commitment to connecting local issues with global networks of knowledge. Students have the option to gain a certificate of specialization in public health from the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health. Students can also work with their adviser to develop their own specialization.

Global Community Involvement

The MDP program also features a summer field practicum which creates a structured opportunity for field-based learning within ongoing development projects. Students can undertake this field practicum with international partners or with local projects situated in the Southwest/borderlands region.

The Arizona MDP partners with organizations including Tango International, an internationally renowned, Tucson-based development practice firm with projects all over the world; JustHope, a sustainable community development organization in Nicaragua; and World Fish a CGIAR affiliated research institute working to reduce hunger and poverty through promoting fisheries and aquaculture. 

Be sure to also see our page of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ).