Dean's Office

Welcome to The Dean's Office

Dean's Message
Dean - Donna J. Petersen, ScD, MHS

Welcome to the USF College of Public Health, part of USF Health. We are celebrating 30 years of practicing our passion while promoting public health.

This semester, we welcomed one of our largest classes ever in all of our degree programs—from the BSPH through the MPH and MSPH and into the PhD and our newly transformed DrPH. In response to the national "Framing the Future" initiative we have also embarked on a journey to completely transform our MPH core curriculum. As part of this initiative, 37 brave pioneers are enrolled in the pilot course, and we've all been enjoying the journey as we apply the latest in teaching technologies and a competency-based content map designed to build skills while also enhancing critical thinking and systems approaches.

Our forward thinking is especially timely given the recent significant public health events.

The Ebola outbreak rages in West Africa, lava flows threaten the Big Island of Hawaii, the Chikungunya virus has already made itself known here in Florida, the non-medically indicated Cesarean birth rate continues to rise, and the continuing roll-out of the Affordable Care Act remains anything but smooth.

On the good news front, there is an important new focus on violence prevention and mental health in our county; the obesity rate has begun to level off; the teen birth rate is at its lowest point ever; and our friends at the Harvard School of Public Health have just received the largest gift ever in the history of the entire university. Clearly, there is good work to be done in public health, and our efforts are increasingly being recognized.

For 30 years, thanks to our visionary founders, our great leaders, an outstanding faculty and staff and our fabulously bright and inquisitive students, we have tackled these and other public health challenges, locally and around the globe. If you aren't already a part of our vibrant community, we welcome you to visit us and to join us on our new strategic path-transformed educational opportunities, the translation of science to practice and genuine community engagement. Our practice is our passion—come share your passions with us and find your place in the ever-exciting world of public health.

Donna J. Petersen, ScD, MHS, CPH

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