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Release: Dec. 8, 2000

UI College of Public Health earns accreditation

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- After a year of intensive planning and growth, this fall the UI College of Public Health was designated as the 29th accredited school of public health in the United States. 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, conferred pre-accreditation status for a period of three years. The pre-accreditation designation is the initial accreditation category for new schools of public health.

"This is an important accomplishment that indicates to current and prospective students that the College of Public Health offers a full public health degree program," said James A. Merchant, M.D., Dr. P.H., dean of the UI College of Public Health. "It also demonstrates to the public health community that the college is a comprehensive public health resource that can begin to meet their public health education, research and community health needs."

In addition to certifying the overall quality of programs in the College, accreditation makes the College eligible to participate in student aid programs and to compete for cooperative agreement grants and for other federal grants available only to accredited schools of public health.

Accreditation also guarantees full representation as an accredited school with the Association of Schools of Public Health (ASPH), the only national organization representing the deans, faculty and students of the accredited member schools of public health and other programs seeking accreditation as schools of public health. The UI College of Public Health was unanimously approved for ASPH membership at the organization's annual meeting in November.

"The College's accreditation represents a significant milestone in the University of Iowa's history of excellence in teaching, research and professional service," said Michael K. Gemmell, executive director of ASPH. "Dr. Merchant, the staff and faculty, together with their practice partners at the local and state levels, should be highly commended for their dedication, vision and hard work in meeting their accreditation goal in such a short period of time."

Founded on July 1, 1999, the UI College of Public Health is the only accredited institution offering public health training in Iowa.

University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the UI College of Medicine and the UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care, medical education and research programs and services they provide.