While our Spring semester has gotten off to a slow, snowy start, I think we can all appreciate that this leap year gives us an extra day this month! We are gearing up for a number of great events this year, including our fourth annual Public Health Research@ Maryland on April 5. We invite faculty and students, as well as public health partners to join us for an exploration of new and interdisciplinary research to improve public health.

This year’s theme, “From Community Engagement to Population Health” emphasizes the critical role of community participation in public health research that will be translated to improve population health. In addition to excellent keynote speakers, we’ll be hosting the directors of city and county health departments in the region for a roundtable on the challenges and opportunities for improving health in Maryland communities. We hope you will join us.

We are also looking forward to hosting Dr. Camara Jones, president of the American Public Health Association, on March 10, for a talk on “Achieving Health Equity: Tools for a National Campaign Against Racism.” This talk is part of the newly launched Maryland Diversity Dialogues and reflects our school’s commitment to health equity, diversity and inclusion and the integration of these values into our research, service and educational activities, including the recent addition of a Master of Public Health concentration in health equity. Dr. Jones is an inspiring leader who eloquently articulates the impact of racism on the health and wellbeing of the nation and uses storytelling to illuminate topics that are otherwise difficult for many Americans to understand or discuss. 

Last but not least, the university’s annual Giving Day (formerly called Scholarship Day) will be held on March 3. Alumni, students, faculty, staff and friends from around the globe are invited to come together for this single largest day of giving at the University of Maryland. Together, our gifts will help to unlock a world of possibilities for UMD students and faculty.

If you haven’t already, I encourage you to sign up for our SPH e-newsletter, which will be sent monthly beginning this month. It’s a great way to stay on top of the news and views from our faculty and students. 

Wishing you a happy and productive semester!

Jane E. Clark, Ph.D.

Professor and Dean