Dean's Message

Randy Wykoff and Family on the Pigeon River in the Great Smoky Mountains of East Tennessee (Gregory Wykoff, alumnus of the College of Public Health, and current student at the Quillen College of Medicine, spent his college summers as a professional rafting guide in the Smoky Mountains.)

It is my pleasure to welcome you to the College of Public Health at East Tennessee State University—the only CEPH-accredited College in Tennessee and the only one in central Appalachia.

The IOM has defined public health as “what we as a society do collectively to assure the conditions for people to be healthy.” We are very proud of our efforts to achieve those goals, especially for people living in rural and impoverished regions of the world.

We recognize three aspects of our College that make us unique:

  1. The Range of Educational Opportunities

    The College offers degree programs at the undergraduate, masters, and doctoral level, undergraduate and graduate certificates, joint degree opportunities and on-line programs focused especially for working professionals.

  2. A strong focus on applied community-based public health

    Starting with an undergraduate major in Health Education in 1933, and hosting the Nation’s oldest EHAC- accredited Environmental Health program, the College has a long history of addressing the health challenges of people living in rural areas, especially those in central Appalachia.

    We value having the community as an active partner in our educational programs and believe in the importance of experiential learning on the part of our students. A recent article by our faculty lays out some of the details of our approach.

    My personal views on public health in general, and global health, in particular, from a talk that I gave in 2006 can be seen if you click on the link below, or paste this link into your web browser:

    mms://etsumedia2.etsu.edu/greatest challenge in global health

  3. “ World-class Education in a World Class Environment”

    The size of our program facilitates a high level of student- faculty interaction and enhances hands-on involvement with community service and research projects. 86% of our funded research projects involve students. Over half of our research projects are multidisciplinary.

    You will find our costs among the most competitive in the country. With opportunities for Graduate Assistant funding, out-of-state scholarships, special rates for on-line students, and stipends for working professionals, we are committed to providing a world-class product at an affordable price.

    Education, however, is only a part of a student’s life. The environment and the culture are also important. Located in the beautiful lake and mountain region of northeast Tennessee, the ETSU community offers great hiking, camping, and other outdoor sports, as well as a remarkably active and diverse arts and music community, proving that excellent academics can go hand-in-hand with an outstanding quality of life.

There has never been a more important time to address the public health challenges of the region, the nation, or the world. I applaud you for your commitment to improving the health and the lives of other people, and wish you the very best for the future.

If you have any questions, please give us a call, or, better yet, pay us a visit.

Best wishes,

Randy Wykoff, MD, MPH &TM
Dean, College of Public Health