School & Program Updates

School & Program Updates

Iowa’s Undergraduate Initiatives

Professional Development Seminar is a Big Part of Iowa’s New Undergraduate Program

In 2016, the University of Iowa College of Public Health launched its first undergraduate degree programs in public health. The Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts degrees in public health provide students with a basic understanding of the five core public health knowledge areas: biostatistics, social and behavioral sciences, epidemiology, health policy and management, and occupational and environmental health sciences.

Additionally, the college created a professional development seminar series to support student success and to facilitate development of critical skills at key points in time for students in the program. This series also contributes toward CEPH’s accreditation criterion regarding cross-cutting concepts and experiences. Each of these seminars provides an opportunity for students to learn directly from professionals in public health practice.

Students are required to attend this three-part seminar series as a part of their major degree requirements. The first-year seminar focuses on a successful transition to college and allows students to reflect on what it means to be a public health student. The second-year seminar prepares students for field experiences and the college’s experiential learning degree requirement and provides an understanding of the contexts in which public health professionals work. The third-year seminar helps students to prepare for life after they’ve completed their undergraduate degree.

“In developing this seminar series, the college has made a commitment to fostering student success through professional skill building,” says Dr. Margaret Chorazy, director of undergraduate programs and clinical assistant professor of epidemiology. “Before our students enter their final year in the program, they will have tools necessary to successfully compete for entry into the public health workforce or graduate educational programs.”

Iowa Hosts Enrichment Program for Underrepresented Undergraduate Students

The University of Iowa College of Public Health recently hosted the closing ceremony for the Summer Health Professions Education Program (SHPEP) at Iowa. SHPEP is a free, six-week summer program for undergraduate students interested in health professional careers.

“Undergraduate students from around the country had an amazing experience exploring careers in public health, medicine, dentistry, and pharmacy,” said Dr. Tanya Uden-Holman, clinical professor and associate dean for academic affairs.

A brief video showcases some of the students and instructors who took part in the program.

Funded by a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the University of Iowa SHPEP program is a collaboration of the College of Public Health, the Carver College of Medicine, College of Dentistry, and College of Pharmacy.

SHPEP’s goal is to strengthen the academic proficiency and career development of students underrepresented in the health professions and prepare them for a successful application and matriculation to health professions schools. These students include, but are not limited to, individuals who identify as African American/Black, American Indian and Alaska Native, and Hispanic/Latino, and who are from communities of socioeconomic and educational disadvantage.

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