Then and now in public health

Dean James W. Curran

Dean James W. Curran

We have much to reflect on this year. Ten years ago, following 9/11 and the intentional release of anthrax, the O. Wayne Rollins Foundation came forward with a major gift to coalesce our research and training in emergency preparedness and response. Through the foundation’s generosity and support from the CDC and NIH, Rollins faculty and students are leading efforts to create a new science in emergency preparedness.

Fifty years ago, President John F. Kennedy created the Peace Corps. Today, our Master’s International (MI) Program, which prepares students for Peace Corps service, is one of the largest MI public health programs in the nation. In September, Peace Corps Director Aaron Williams visited Rollins to formally establish the Paul D. Coverdell Fellows Program for returned volunteers and recognize our students’ commitment to serving Atlanta’s growing refugee population.

This year, we set new records for enrollment totals, proving again that Rollins is a global destination for public health. Among our incoming class of 501 degree-seeking students are 114 international students—also a record. They join our largest cohorts of 67 Career MPH students and 25 MD/MPH students. And the expanded research of our growing faculty led to an all-time high of more than $62 million in sponsored research awards, up 28% from last year.

We also celebrated the remarkable life of David Sencer, the former CDC director and an RSPH founding father who passed away in May. Dr. Sencer took great pride in the accomplishments of our students and faculty and was a role model for all of us. He is greatly missed by his family, friends, and colleagues in public health.


James W. Curran, MD, MPH
James W. Curran Dean of Public Health

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