AT WORCESTER Polytechnic Institute in Massachusetts, all first-year students participate in a "great problems" seminar focusing on issues such as food sustainability, the world's water supply or chronic disease. The early public health exposure means a number of those students end up doing public health work in their junior and senior years.
At Kapi'olani Community College in Hawaii, students choose from the service learning "pathways" of health, the environment and elder care as part of their general education curriculum. A recent service project matched Native Hawaiian students with native elders to work on health literacy.
"Their curriculum is just shot through with public health," Susan Albertine, PhD, vice president at the Association of American Colleges and Universities, told The Nation's Health. "It's a beautiful thing."
The movement to incorporate public health into all undergraduate students' education, while still relatively new, has gained momentum in the past few years. Leaders in the effort are working to quantify exactly how many schools now offer either introductory public health courses to undergraduates, a public health minor or a public health major.
"What I can tell you for …