UW News

September 23, 2002

Applicants sought for public health leadership training and development

An institute based in the University of Washington’s School of Public Health and Community Medicine is looking for people who want to develop both personally and professionally as leaders in the field of community health.

“Public health is the process of blending science, politics, and advocacy to create healthier communities. The purpose of the Northwest Public Health Leadership Institute is to help participants develop innovative approaches to public health problems at the community level,” says Dr. Carolyn A. Watts, institute director and professor of health services. “Participants can expect to benefit both personally and as members of their organizations.”

The scholars will examine such issues as community-building, crisis management, and how to mentor younger people to enter leadership roles in public health. The scholars will complete a major project, perhaps as part of their job, under the mentorship of the institute faculty. There are three gatherings in Seattle during the 13-month program, and extensive contact via the Internet and other technologies.

The organizers are not just looking for people who work in agencies with the name ‘public health;’ they also seek participants who might represent a wide variety of organizations and job titles, including federal, state and local government agencies; community-based organizations; tribal health organizations; and hospitals, clinics, and community health centers. Applicants might also be police officers, serve on hospital boards, city councils, or some other role that intersects with the health of a community.

“There are a lot of emerging challenges, and they cut across travel, trade, agriculture, business, leisure, housing, poverty and more. And now, issues related to bioterrorism add another layer. Many other people besides public health workers have a role — community health is a collaborative process,” Watts says. “We can’t do everything in 13 months, so we are looking for participants committed to lifelong exploration and learning.”

The Northwest Public Health Leadership Institute is the product of a partnership among the NW Center for Public Health Practice at the University of Washington’s School of Public Health and Community Medicine, Portland State University, and the states of Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington.

The application deadline is Oct. 31. Tuition for the 13-month program is $1,200, which includes materials, books, and room and board at the three on-site sessions.

For more information and applications, see http://nwcphp.org/nwphli/ or call (206) 616-2986.