The Rutgers School of Public Health understands the complex synergy that exists between the biological, psychological, and social domains of every human being. Moreover, the Rutgers School of Public Health seeks to ameliorate the mental health challenges faced by local, national, and global communities through its three pillars: research, education, and community engagement.
Faculty Research/Training: The Rutgers School of Public Health’s growing faculty, including Dean Perry N. Halkitis, a public health psychologist, explore numerous dimensions of mental health including the intimate link between mental health burdens and substance use and abuse. The Rutgers School of Public Health recognizes the fact that individuals are vulnerable to substance abuse, whether it be alcohol, tobacco, heroin, methamphetamine, or any other substance, because of social and emotional stressors. We also know that other risky behaviors and firearm violence are shaped by mental health burdens. Many Rutgers School of Public Health faculty have psychology training and recognize that disorders, whether Axis I or Axis II, may contribute to numerous personal and public health issues. The work that they conduct extends to diverse populations, including incarcerated, sexual and gender minorities, economically disadvantaged, and immigrants, who may be at an even greater risk for psychopathology.
Student Education & Community Engagement: The Rutgers School of Public Health continues to emphasize the importance of training students to recognize and address mental health as part of total health, through practice opportunities and educational programming in collaboration with the Rutgers Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology and the Rutgers School of Social Work.
Student Health: The Rutgers School of Public Health recognizes that students also confront social and emotional challenges during their time at the School. Under the leadership of Mike Vega, MSW, Director of Student Support Services, the School is building a highly responsive, student-centered, student affairs enterprise that recognizes the emotional needs of students.
The Rutgers School of Public Health is committed to growing its efforts in the mental health field through its clear adaptation of the biopsychosocial paradigm of health and well-being.