Faculty at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security have developed a new degree track at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health for US and international students who are passionate about taking a leadership role in preventing, detecting, and responding to epidemics and other disasters.
The new health security track in the Bloomberg School’s Doctor of Public Health (DrPH) degree program will launch in the first term of the 2019 academic year.
Jennifer Nuzzo, DrPH, and Crystal Watson, DrPH, designed the track and will serve as its directors. They are both faculty in the Bloomberg School’s Department of Environmental Health and Engineering—the track’s sponsoring department—in addition to their work at the Center.
“Demand for knowledgeable public health professionals with health security expertise will grow considerably as threats to the health of communities continue to increase in source, frequency, and complexity,” said Nuzzo. “We’re grateful the Bloomberg School has again recognized the promise of an emerging academic discipline focused on protecting health and saving lives, and in doing so affirmed the extraordinary value of our Center’s two decades of scholarship and advocacy on health security issues.”
The Center was founded in 1998 by the late DA Henderson, a former dean of the Bloomberg School and director of the World Health Organization’s smallpox eradication campaign. Now with a staff or more than 30 interdisciplinary researchers and administrative professionals, the Center is regarded as the leading global authority on biosecurity policy and is regularly engaged by governments and health-focused organizations all over the world.
Center faculty will tailor the breadth of this experience to the classroom, immersing DrPH health security track students in the same highly relevant thinking that positions the Center at the forefront of a rapidly evolving field. Students who complete the track will be able to identify major health security threats and characterize the human, social, economic, and political risks they pose to societies; demonstrate the importance of public health to national security; examine the origin and evolution of major US and international organizations and initiatives to prevent, detect, and respond to health security threats; assess those areas of health security where preparedness is strongest and those where additional progress is needed; evaluate the effectiveness of strategies to enhance health security and prevent or mitigate health security threats; and synthesize and communicate important health security information in a way that enables political officials and policymakers to take appropriate action.
“We are thrilled to prepare future health security leaders through a thematically innovative curriculum that builds on the outstanding educational foundation afforded to students at the Bloomberg School,” said Watson.
The track is one of only a few doctoral-level health security programs currently available at an accredited school of public health in the United States or abroad. It includes a blend of courses taught by senior Center staff and courses taught by fellow Bloomberg School faculty, with courses offered online throughout the academic year or in person during summer institute and winter intercession.
The DrPH degree program at the Bloomberg School is designed for students who already have an MPH or equivalent degree and who intend to pursue a leadership position as a public health professional. The Bloomberg School is the world’s largest school of public health and has been ranked No. 1 by US News and World Report every year since 1994.