On July 1, 2008 our three universities pulled together the programs, people and expertise needed to move our school forward and kick-started a collaborative effort to promote the health of communities across our region and world. Fast forward five years and we are making good on that initiative – expanding community-focused research, training our future workforce, and building new partnerships for improved public health.
Each day I come to work, I am continually amazed by the efforts underway across our three universities. I am proud that we have attracted some of the brightest faculty and students to join our school and that our communities are focused on working with us to advance our mission. When I talk about our mission, I like to focus on six school-wide strengths: American Indian and Alaska Native Health, Cancer Prevention and Control, Diabetes and Obesity Prevention, Global Health, Maternal and Child Health, and Worker Health and Wellness. And though our mission touches many other areas of expertise, these six cross cut many of our programs and campuses, including school health initiatives at UNC and CU, the Peace Corps Masters International at CSU, the Center for Global Health at CU, and programs focused on the health of American Indian populations at UNC and CU. The list goes on – all six strengths offer us numerous stories and highlights of our mission in action across our campuses.
It is those stories that I look forward to sharing when I talk about the school with donors, prospective students, and community leaders. It is through our stories that we illustrate the impact of our school during its first five years and into the future.
When I look forward to the next six months, and even the next five years, I see a lot of opportunity for our school. In August we will have a final version of our new strategic plan – a plan which will guide investment in new programs and public health initiatives. By the time we hit our ten year anniversary July 1, 2018, I expect our school to have transformed from a very good school of public health into a great one; one positioned to tackle the emerging public health challenges of the 21st century.
So thank you all for your contributions these first five years, and for your investment in the many years to come.
David C. Goff, Jr., MD, PhD