About the Calvin Schwabe Project

The goal of the Calvin Schwabe One Health Project is to strengthen the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine's commitment to One Health by ensuring that future veterinarians integrate human, animal and ecosystem protection into their professional work.

Experience with the One Health approach can expand career pathways for students in a wide variety of disciplines including wildlife and ecosystem health, public practice, food safety, herd health, disaster preparedness, rural health, zoonotic disease threats and more. The project is nimble and dynamic, offering a variety of externships and programs that allow it to evolve as new opportunities emerge in One Health.

Condor flying - What is One Health?

What is One Health?

The One Health approach recognizes the growing connection between the health of animals, people and the environment. It understands that humans do not exist in isolation, but are part of the larger, total living ecosystem. The activities and conditions of each member affect others on a variety of levels: economic, cultural, physical and more.

Preventing disease events rather than simply reacting to them requires coordination of wildlife, environmental, human and domestic health sectors. Prevention is always preferable to control because it actively avoids the impact of disease, and some control methods have negative social or environmental results.

In 2008, the American Veterinary Medical Association released a report in collaboration with the American Medical Association recommending that the One Health concept be expanded across both veterinary and human health professions. The concept has continued to gain recognition since then and future practitioners are increasingly expected to be prepared to work with colleagues across many disciplines to help solve emerging global problems.

Calvin Schwabe photo

Who is Calvin Schwabe?

Widely Known as the "father of modern epidemiology," the late Calvin Schwabe had a productive and inspiring career that spanned 52 years. Twenty-five of those years were spent at UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine as a professor of epidemiology, where he made significant and broad contributions to the study of zoonotic diseases, production and food animal medicine, and public health.

The term "one medicine" (forerunner of the more current term, One Health) was coined by Dr. Schwabe in his 1984 book, Veterinary Medicine and Human Health, to bring a renewed interest to the synergy that can emerge when health practitioners and scientists collaborate. His insightful words, "The critical needs of man include the combating of diseases, ensuring enough food, adequate environmental quality, and a society in which humane values prevail," are just as compelling today as they were when they were written.

The Calvin Schwabe One Health Project honors Dr. Schwabe's prescience in reviving the "one medicine" concept, and continues to advance his vision.


Partnerships with our human- and environmental-health colleagues set the stage for true collaboration. Multidisciplinary teams create the synergy needed for critical thinking and problem-solving issues relevant to sustainable health for humans, animals, and their environment. This transdisciplinary teaching, research, and mentoring, in turn, will equip our students to respond to global health challenges.

One Health Institute | Karen C. Drayer Wildlife Health Center | Educational Center of Expertise in One Health | UC Davis School of Medicine | UC Davis Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing | UC Davis Master of Public Health Program | UC Davis Master of Preventive Veterinary Medicine Program | UC Davis Department of Wildlife, Fish, & Conservation Biology | National Center for Foreign Animal and Zoonotic Disease Defense | California Department of Public Health | American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) | California Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA)