This is Dr. Rob Simmons and me on the gymnasium floor of the 13th Annual UC Davis Pre-Medical and Pre-Health Professions National Conference on their campus in suburban Sacramento, CA. Rob is the Director of our fully accredited MPH program and he’s been a regular attendee at this annual jamboree. He’s been encouraging me to make the trip for several years, and now I know why. I hope this is the first of many visits to this amazing annual student-run event that attracts more than 10,000 undergraduates from across California and other western states, representing a wide range of ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Their engagement in a health profession is vitally important to enhance the cultural and language diversity of future health professionals to better serve the increasing diverse consumer and patient populations.
Thomas Jefferson University exhibited at the health fair in collaboration with the Admissions office…an amazing opportunity to highlight graduate programs in all six of our colleges at Jefferson.
Rob presented a number of workshops in the Public Health track, including, Dual Degrees in Public Health – The Synergy of Public Health and Health Sciences Professions; Getting an MPH During Your Gap Year Before Medical School; and The Future of Public Health in the Post Affordable Care Act Era.
I was honored to give one of the plenary addresses to a large group of students, some considering a potential career in public health. My message to students is simple – my generation has made a mess of healthcare and we need your help to put it right for the future! I’m pleased and proud to lead a college that offers five Master’s degrees and a Doctoral Program, one of which can help students to make a world of difference in the future.
Kudos to the hundreds of student volunteers who staffed and managed the entire event. I was incredibly impressed by the energy level, organizational skill, and passion exhibited by the students I met. Perhaps all is not lost because of the next generation’s level of idealism and their willingness to roll up their sleeves to get the tough work done. I want to give a special shout out to Vinita Anantavat, the Director of Keynote Programming, who made this visit possible.