Twenty years ago Emory offered its first graduate program in public health--a master's degree in community health. From those beginnings, the School of Public Health was founded in 1990, becoming the first new school created at the University in more than five decades. Today, the Rollins School of Public Health is one of the nation's fastest growing public health programs, offering both master's and doctoral degrees.
The school recently moved into a new state-of-the-art facility on Clifton Road adjacent to the O. Wayne Rollins Research Center. The ten-story Grace Crum Rollins Public Health Building is the tallest structure on the Emory campus and features some 140,000 square feet of space for a school that has already exceeded 1998 growth predictions. "The physical prominence of the building stands as a constant reminder of our high expectations for the Rollins School of Public Health," says Dean Raymond S. Greenberg. "Those expectations were created four years ago when Mr. O. Wayne Rollins first shared with us his vision for how this school could serve [the world] by helping people in need.
"When Mr. Rollins passed away, his widow, Mrs. Grace Crum Rollins, and her family would not let this vision perish. Through their generous support, this building stands today as tangible evidence of their commitment to public service and social justice."
The Rollins School of Public Health has eighty-five full-time faculty members and more than 550 students representing some forty countries. To date, graduates have gone on to fill positions in the health ministries of fourteen nations.
Dedicated to addressing public health issues on local, regional, national, and international levels, researchers, faculty, students, and graduates of the school engage in diverse activities. According to Greenberg, the school's work is "wide-ranging" and includes "testing the efficacy of vaccines, promoting fortification of food in developing countries, analyzing the costs of health care services, preventing teenage pregnancy, monitoring the occurrence of cancer, preventing firearm injuries, and studying health hazards among farmers."
One of the Rollins School of Public Health's greatest strengths is its relationship with and proximity to three of the world's largest public health organizations, all of which are based in Atlanta. The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention--the federal agency dedicated to developing and applying disease prevention and control, environmental health, health safety, and health education programs--provides more than half of the school's adjunct faculty and a wealth of opportunities for public health students and faculty to collaborate in research projects.
The Carter Center serves the School of Public Health as a teaching and public health clinical resource through intervention programs in this country and internationally. And the school shares programs, personnel, research projects, and information with the American Cancer Society, the largest voluntary health organization in the world.
Another important aspect of the Rollins School of Public Health is its interdisciplinary focus. One third of the faculty hold joint appointments, and the master's degree in public health can be earned in conjunction with an M.D. degree, a master's degree in nursing, or an MBA. In the planning stages are joint degrees between the Rollins School of Public Health and the School of Law, Candler School of Theology, and the Soviet, Post-Soviet, and East European Studies program.--J.D.T.
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