The U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) awarded Loma Linda University School of Public Health a three-year $1.5 million grant to provide scholarships to employees of local Inland Southern California public health agencies.
Recipients of the HRSA grant will gain increased knowledge and skills and will strengthen local community partnerships seeking to address public health inequities and health disparities.
“Having students with a public health career focus will broaden our learning community with people who have a specific passion because they already know their professional goals,” said Lori Wilber, MD, MPH, project director and program director. “They will not have to wait until graduation to apply what they are learning."
Karen Studer, MD, MBA, MPH, and co-author of the grant, said one of her colleagues at HRSA said this was one of the most competitive grant opportunities they have had this year.
Studer anticipates many community partners will take advantage of this opportunity to increase the public health workforce's knowledge and better prepare public health professionals for future pandemics or epidemics.
“I hope many people will be able to take advantage of this scholarship,” Studer said. "COVID-19 gave us a perfect example of why it is important to train and reinforce our public health workforce and infrastructure.”
Studer’s goal for the program is that students will continue to work in local communities after earning their MPH or certification from the School of Public Health. The hope is that students will return to their organizations and implement the knowledge they have learned.
The HRSA grant will provide scholarships to four Inland Southern California public health agencies, including the Inland Empire Health Plan, Imperial County Public Health Department, Riverside County Public Health Department, and San Bernardino County Department of Public Health.
For more information on the Master in Public Health and certificate programs at LLU School of Public Health, visit publichealth.llu.edu/academics.