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History of the College

Public Health at Georgia Southern University began in 1998 in the Department of Health and Kinesiology within the College of Health and Professional Studies with the development of the Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) degree with an emphasis in Community Health Education and the Master of Health Services Administration (M.H.S.A.) degree. The M.P.H. was expanded to include an emphasis in Biostatistics in 2000.

On January 14, 2004 the Board of Regents established the first School of Public Health in the University System of Georgia and named it the Jiann-Ping Hsu School of Public Health. The School was housed within the College of Health and Human Sciences. The establishment of the School was made possible by a generous gift from Dr. Karl E. Peace, in memory and honor of his wife, Dr. Jiann-Ping Hsu.

Formation of the School of Public Health (SPH) by the Board of Regents was a response to the compelling need to address the public health concerns in the State of Georgia, particularly among rural and underserved populations. Justification for selection of a SPH at Georgia Southern University is directly related to the potential impact the institution will have among rural and underserved residents of the state. In addition to the creation of the School of Public Health, the Board of Regents also approved the establishment of the Karl E. Peace Center for Biostatistics. The Center for Biostatistics functions as a focal point for biostatistical consulting, education, and grantsmanship for the College and University.

In order to position the Jiann-Ping Hsu School of Public Health for accreditation by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH), the School transitioned to the Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health effective January 1, 2006. Along with this transition, the Center for Public Health Practice and Research (CPHPR), formerly the Center for Rural Health and Research, was moved from the College of Health and Human Sciences to the new College. The Center functions as a focal point for the improvement of health status and quality of life of individuals in rural Georgia by creating successful partnerships with community organizations, faculty and students. The Center for Addiction Recovery was established Fall 2008 through a generous gift from the Willingway foundation. The Center is dedicated to research, educational programs and services focusing on addiction and the process of long-term recovery.

Currently, the Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health offers the Master of Healthcare Administration (M.H.A.) and the Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) degrees, with emphasis areas in Biostatistics, Community Health, Environmental Health Sciences, Epidemiology, and Health Policy and Administration. In addition, the Doctor of Public Health with program concentrations in Biostatistics, Community Health Behavior and Education, and Public Health Leadership was approved by the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia on January 16, 2007.

Our focus is to continually invest the necessary resources and quality improvement strategies to build and maintain the quality of our outstanding CEPH accredited College of Public Health that is recognized nationally for teaching, research, and service.

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JPHCOPH Timeline pdf

Last updated: 3/9/2014