Bloomberg School of Public Health
Members Present: Drs. Steven Knapp, Robert Black, Robert Blum, Ron Brookmeyer, William Eaton, John Groopman, Martha Hill, David Holtgrave, Michael Klag, Thomas Louis, Ellen MacKenzie, Roger McMacken, Edward Miller, Jonathan Samet, E. William Spannhake, and Scott Zeger; and Ms. Robin Fox, staff.
Members Absent: Drs. William Brody, Lynn Goldman, Diane Griffin, and James Yager.
Guests: Professor Stephen Teret; Mr. Herbert Hansen; and Ms. Diane Glover.
Meeting Convened: Provost Steven Knapp convened the meeting at 9 a.m.
Approval of the Minutes: Minutes of the 911th Advisory Board meeting of July 27, 2006 were approved.
Remarks by the Provost Dr. Knapp reported that the Council of Deans recently discussed the next stage of University fund-raising, now that the "Knowledge for the World" campaign goal of $2 billion has been surpassed.
The first stage of a new building adjacent to the School of Nursing will contain expanded Nursing space and the Berman Bioethics Institute, and create collaborative space for shared activities on the East Baltimore campus. The University continues to make a strong case for continued public support of private education; both gubernatorial candidates have expressed appreciation for the contributions made by Johns Hopkins to the economic and intellectual life of the State. Dr. MacKenzie noted that both candidates will visit the School in the next several weeks.
Remarks by the Dean
Dr. Klag thanked the Advisory Board members for rescheduling the meeting time. He noted that the CEPH site visit is October 11 - 13, 2006 and that the Committee of the Whole meeting on October 5 will be devoted to the upcoming site visit. The Health Advisory Board will meet in New York City at the end of October. Dr. Klag reported that Dr. Zeger has agreed to chair a task force to examine the School's current activities in the area of public health informatics, and to make recommendations regarding the directions in which the School should proceed in this area.
The building that will house the School of Nursing and the Bioethics Institute is the first phase of a 2-part building project. The School of Public Health will participate in the second phase of the building and will need to raise the construction funds. The Master of Health Science in Occupational and Environmental Hygiene, offered by the Department of Environmental Health Sciences, was recently site visited by its accrediting agency. Dr. Klag reported that the site visit went well.
Report of the Faculty Senate
Dr. Louis reported that the name of the president-elect of the Faculty Senate will be announced as soon as the election process has concluded in early October. The results of the Faculty Senate survey will be posted on the Senate website and discussed by the Senate and by the Committee of the Whole or Advisory Board.
Self-study of the Department of International Health
Dr. Black reviewed the self-study of the Department of International Health. Presently the Department has 126 full-time faculty, including 27 full professors, 5 of whom are emeritus or partly retired. The faculty are bimodally distributed by seniority, with a preponderance of senior and very junior faculty, and relatively few assistant and associate professors, although several recruitments are now underway. Dr. Black reported on the state of the Department. The Department is organized into four program areas that were developed following the 2000 Department review; program areas are synchronous with the doctoral and master's programs. Several centers serve as research foci within the Department as well as across the School and University. The Department has more than 100 doctoral and 100 master's students. The Health Systems program is understaffed and several faculty searches are underway.
A significant proportion of full- and part-time MPH students affiliate with the Department, and faculty from the Department co-direct a number of the MPH concentration areas.
Dr. Black described the Department's research program, including the areas in which it has grown over the past few years. Its sources of funding are primarily AID, NIH, the Gates Foundation, and the Global Alliance Vaccine Initiative (GAVI). The budget of the Department has doubled since the last review. While NIH funding has been relatively stable, other sources are more variable, including AID funding, which has an uncertain future. The Department's endowment has also increased but is almost entirely for restricted uses.
The Department engaged in a strategic plan as part of the self-study process. It conducted a survey of faculty, staff, and students that led to specific recommendations, including: increasing social and intellectual interactions; increasing student funding through training grants and other mechanisms; improving the quality of student advising; improving junior faculty mentoring; improving administrative support for faculty; and continuing to address faculty balance of effort and general funds support. Several of these recommendations will be acted on before or during the Department review. Other recommendations relate to increasing unrestricted endowment and increasing the Department's visibility in public health practice and policy.
Dr. Black concluded his presentation by commenting on the Department's excellent academic and research programs, the quality of its faculty, and students, its consistent and diverse funding sources, and its self-assessment capability.
In discussion, Dr. Groopman noted that even though the Applied Public Health program is principally domestically oriented, the Department of International Health may wish to further engage in it. Dr. Brookmeyer asked about the status of addition a faculty in the refugee and humanitarian assistance area as it is greatly sought after by students. Dr. Black reported that faculty recruitment and retention is problematic in this area as funding is insecure, however is a departmental priority. Dr. Klag noted that fundraising for this area is also a priority.
Provost Knapp asked whether the Department interacts with other departments in the School and whether the School or Department has developed "regional strategies" for specific areas of the world. Dr. Black commented that faculty collaborate well across departmental and divisional boundaries, however funding availability drives most international faculty activity, which is otherwise limited through lack of resources. There are few comparable departments in other Universities given the size and diversity of this Department although there are some comparable program areas in other institutions for possible benchmarking
Dr. Black and members of the Advisory Board then briefly discussed processes to improve the quality of advising, including developing and communicating explicit incentives, improving feedback to advisors, and involving students in these processes. Dr. Knapp then thanked Dr. Black for his presentation.
Review of action items from June 2006 School leadership retreat
The Advisory Board briefly review the action items from the June 2006 retreat, commenting that he is meeting with the deans and chairs to move specific items forward. He mentioned several discussion and consensus among the chairs regarding tenure-track and non-tenure-track professorial faculty. Dr. Louis noted that the Committee on Appointments and Promotions will hold a retreat to discuss implementation of the consensus. Dr. Klag remarked that Dr. Goldman had volunteered to the assist the Committee on Appointments and Promotions as it discusses developing more explicit criteria for evaluating professional practice.
Recruitment of health economics faculty member in the Department of Health Policy and Management
Dr. MacKenzie commented that with the departure of Dr. Gaskin, there is an acute academic need to add to the expertise health economics in the Department of Health Policy and Management by conducting a search for a professorial faculty member (rank undetermined.) Dr. Frick will be asked to chair the search committee. Dr Klag noted that Dr. Frick is also taking on a leadership role in the interdepartmental program in health economics.
Recruitment plan for tenure-track faculty for the Department of Health, Behavior and Society Dr. Holtgrave briefly reviewed the faculty recruitment plan for the Department of Health, Behavior and Society, which include up to 5 tenure-track positions over the next 4 years. He plans to begin the initial search in the next few months.
There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 10:55 a.m.
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