Faculty from Georgia Southern University’s Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health (JPHCOPH) have secured a federal grant totaling more than $1.8 million from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to promote inclusive excellence in health informatics and health equity.

Empowering minority students

With the goal of empowering minority students through education, JPHCOPH’s Professor and Department Chair Gulzar Shah, Ph.D., as principal investigator, and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs Nandi Marshall, DrPH, as co-investigator, received the grant as part of the $7.98 million award for the TRIUMPH (Training in Informatics for Underrepresented Minorities in Public Health) consortium, which included three other universities and four public health organizations.

“This initiative will help our college foster collaborations and community engagement involving influential public health agencies, academic institutions, community organizations and public health agencies,” stated Shah. “It will assist with paid practical experience for students and the practicum sites, and better prospects of job placements for the graduates. The grant will also involve health informatics capacity-building in the current public health workforce in Georgia.”  

Online concentration

In addition, the grant will help facilitate a new fully online concentration in public health informatics within the University’s existing Master of Public Health (MPH) program. This concentration will feature new courses focused on health information systems, data analytics and public health data visualization for evidenced-based practice. The courses will also be available as elective options for students in the Doctor of Public Health program. As well, the award also provides several graduate assistant opportunities to support students enrolled in the new MPH concentration.

Jiann-Ping Hsu faculty members Hani Samawi, Ph.D., Jeff Jones, Ph.D., Linda Kimsey, Ph.D., Joanne Chopak-Foss, Ph.D., Katie Mercer, DrPH, and Bobbie Jo Newell also significantly contributed to securing the grant.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT provided support for the grant. The federal award number is 90PH0005/01-00.

Georgia Southern University, a public Carnegie Doctoral/R2 institution founded in 1906, offers approximately 140 different degree programs serving almost 27,000 students through 10 colleges on three campuses in Statesboro, Savannah, Hinesville and online instruction. A leader in higher education in southeast Georgia, the University provides a diverse student population with expert faculty, world-class scholarship and hands-on learning opportunities. Georgia Southern creates lifelong learners who serve as responsible scholars, leaders and stewards in their communities. Visit GeorgiaSouthern.edu.