June 19, 2015
IU Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
IU Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health at IUPUI receives CEPH accreditation
INDIANAPOLIS – The IU Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health at IUPUI in Indianapolis announced today it has been awarded full accreditation by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH), an independent agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education to accredit schools of public health and public health programs outside schools of public health. Accreditation provides assurance that the school or program has been evaluated and has met accepted standards established by and with the profession.
“I could not be more proud of the Fairbanks School of Public Health faculty and staff for the hard work they have done to help us achieve full accreditation,” said Paul K. Halverson, Founding Dean of the school. “Not only did CEPH grant full accreditation on our first application, but it was awarded for five years. This is significant, and is an indication of the high quality of our programs and the dedication of our team to delivering an exceptional academic and research program. As a relatively new school, we had a lot to prove. With this accreditation, our students and community partners can feel confident that our programs meet the highest standards.”
In order to achieve accreditation, schools are required by CEPH to conduct a self-evaluation and submit a lengthy report detailing how the school meets a variety of criteria, including the school’s curricula, student learning outcomes, resources, research opportunities, and students/faculty interaction. An on-site visit by peer reviewers is then conducted to validate the findings of the self-study. The team interviews school administrators, university officials, faculty, students, alumni and community leaders and inspects the school’s facilities, examines documentation corroborating the self-study and prepares a report of its findings.
CEPH accreditation provides many advantages for the larger community. For graduates of accredited schools, it promotes professional mobility and enhances employment opportunities in positions that base eligibility upon graduation from an accredited school or program. For prospective employers, it provides assurance that the curriculum covers essential skills and knowledge needed for today’s jobs and ensures that the school’s educational requirements reflect the current training needs of the profession.
The need for public health education in Indiana is great. According to the United Health Foundation’s most recent “America’s Health Rankings” the state ranks just 41 out of 50 states in overall health. The ASCM American Fitness Index for 2015 ranks Indiana 50 out of 50, down three spots from last year’s rank. Further, the state needs more students in the pipeline to replace public health and health administration workers who are entering retirement. An accredited School of Public Health helps to ensure that a well-trained workforce is available to step into jobs and to bring innovative ideas that address Indiana’s top health challenges.
“Our faculty, staff, alumni and advisors have been working toward accreditation since we were established as a standalone school in 2012,” noted Dean Halverson. “Earning this accreditation brings us one step closer to our goal of becoming a Top 25 school of Public Health. We’re going to celebrate this accomplishment, then get back to the exciting work of improving health for the people of Indiana and beyond.”
The IU Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health offers eight degree programs in public health and health administration, including two bachelor’s degrees, three master’s degrees and three doctoral degrees. The Fairbanks School of Public Health is the only school in Indiana to offer a CAHME accredited Master in Health Administration (MHA). In addition, the school offers a number of dual degrees in partnership with a variety of IUPUI schools including the IU School of Medicine and the IU McKinney School of Law. The school is known for its expertise in a number of areas, including biostatistics, epidemiology, cancer research, community health, environmental public health, health policy and health administration. More information can be found at www.pbhealth.iupui.edu.