In 1944, with endowments from Drs. William and Charles Mayo, the University of Minnesota established the School of Public Health, now ranked among the top 10 schools in the country. Although the school is officially 75 years old, public health has been taught at the University since 1874 when Charles Hewitt became the Non-Resident Professor of Public Health, likely the first U.S. academic appointment in the field.
The school is well known for innovative programs and seminal work in such areas as cardiovascular disease, nutrition, tobacco use, human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDs), rural health, and structural racism. Milestones, like the first PhD in epidemiology and hospital administration program, are points of pride, but it is the foundational commitment to making health a human right that guides the school’s work now and into the future.
In 2019, the school partnered with Twin Cities Public Television to produce a documentary (watch the trailer). And on December 5, it brought together public health leaders, scholars, alumni, and health care professionals for the inaugural Healthy Futures Summit. This day-long conversation, featuring Mr. Dan Buettner, Dr. Michael Osterholm, and Dr. Jim Neaton as keynote speakers, explored future public health challenges and the solutions needed to advance health as a global human right. Health visionary Mr. Andy Slavitt gave the evening address and reminded everyone how to make a difference in public health — “…be a warrior,” he said. “Be a warrior for what you believe in.”Tags: Friday Letter Submission, Publish on December 27