Emphasizing the 'public' in public health
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Given its name, it’s not surprising the University of Iowa College of Public Health is keen on serving the public.
One way it’s doing that is through an initiative called the Business Leadership Network. Launched in 2011, the program fosters relationships between the college and business and community leaders across the state, especially in rural Iowa.
Throughout the year, faculty, students, and staff visit communities to meet with these leaders to share information, listen about their public health concerns and questions, and look for opportunities for collaboration.
“The network grew out of the recognition that so much of what public health does is very place-based,” says Sue Curry, dean of the College of Public Health. “It happens out in the ‘real world,’ where people live and work, and we believe it’s beneficial to all parties involved for the college to foster collaborative relationships with communities and businesses around the state.”
That was the case on April 30, when the network and the college hosted a community forum in Ottumwa that brought college faculty and community members together to discuss public health issues in their communities. Discussion topics included community health and wellness, workplace health and safety, aging populations and workforce, and health care policy reform.
The next Business Leadership Network meeting is scheduled for May 9 in Mason City.
For more information about the UI College of Public Health, visit www.public-health.uiowa.edu/.
To view an interactive map showing the many ways the University of Iowa is engaging with communities across the state, visit outreach.uiowa.edu/.