This spring, community members have a great opportunity to learn more about minority health issues and minorities who have made significant contributions to the field of public health. February is Black History Month, and in honor of this, students from the School of Rural Public Health (SRPH), The Texas A&M University System Health Science Center, will join students from A&M Consolidated High School and Bryan High to present information about minority health issues.
On February 20 from 6 to 7 p.m., SRPH students join the A&M Consolidated Health Occupation Student Association (HOSA) at the high school for a mini health fair featuring blood pressure screenings by the HOSA students and eye exams by Dr. Greene of Greene Eyes. On February 24 at 7 p.m. at Bryan High, the SRPH students join in a program showcasing ongoing activities such as ROTC and featuring performances by the gospel choir. Both events are open to the public.
The School of Rural Public Health celebrates its fifth year in April. The February activities are part of a series of events being held this year to celebrate the anniversary. SRPH student participation was organized by Joanne Fields, a master of public health student in the Department of Social and Behavioral Health. “I wanted to do this project to show that SRPH reaches out to the community and cares about its health as a whole,” she said. “By highlighting minority health issues in comparison to non-minorities, the community can become of aware of its own health. Also, by highlighting some of the minorities who have contributed to public health and medicine, the community can know that contributions to the growth and advancement of health and medicine in the nation has been done by all Americans.”
The major event to commemorate the School’s fifth year will be held April 4. A convocation featuring Dr. Harrison Spencer, CEO of the Association of the Schools of Public Health, and presenting student and faculty research will be held at the Clayton Williams Jr. Alumni Center. This coincides with National Public Health Week, which is the first week of April.
The School received approval to offer degrees from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board in April 1998 and welcomed its first class of 23 students in August 1998. The enrollment is now at 239, including deveral distance education sites across the state of Texas.
The Texas A&M University System Health Science Center provides the state with health education, outreach and research. Its five components located in communities throughout Texas are Baylor College of Dentistry, the College of Medicine, the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, the Institute of Biosciences and Technology and the School of Rural Public Health.

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