Almost one year ago, we brought together SPH students, faculty and staff for the first of a series of conversations about public health issues in the news . The topic was gun violence.

This Friday we will gather again, this time for an SPH Town Hall on Gun Violence, less than two weeks after the assault at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Too little has happened to address the public health crisis of guns and gun violence. The students from Stoneman Douglas High School who are pressing lawmakers to act have provided new hope for meaningful change. Join us to be part of the conversation. As always, I want to hear from our students and I see this moment as a critical time to take action and save lives from gun violence.

As we respond to this call for action, please consider the call to support the great work of our university -- our research, educational programs and service to the community -- on UMD Giving Day, March 7. Your gift to the School of Public Health can make a difference in our ability to support students in need, advance research to promote health and prevent disease and continue our momentum as we enter our second decade as a school. Mark your calendar and give a gift ($10 or more) to one of several SPH funds. Learn more about Giving Day challenges and help us to win matching funds!

I hope you will also join us for the sixth annual Public Health Research @ Maryland on April 3, during National Public Health Week. Submit your research and/or come to learn about the diversity of work being led by the the University of Maryland, College Park, the University of Maryland, Baltimore and other institutions in our region to advance health and well-being. Dr. Rich Besser, President and CEO of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, will give a talk on “Changing the Definition of Health in America.”

There are so many ways to put our public health research, ideals and values into practice and to reimagine the definition of health together. I look forward to seeing you at one of our many upcoming events and thank you for your support of the School of Public Health.

Boris D. Lushniak, MD, MPH 
Dean and Professor