Nominations for 2019 Outstanding Alumni Awards due Feb. 28

The University of Iowa College of Public Health is pleased to announce that it is accepting nominations for the 2019 College of Public Health Outstanding Alumni Awards.

This award program recognizes outstanding alumni in two categories: first, recent graduates who have completed College of Public Health programs within the past ten years and, second, other alumni for accomplishments throughout their careers.

The CPH Outstanding Alumni Award selection committee will select recipients from an academic or research position in even numbered years, and individuals from a practice setting in odd numbered years. Therefore, for the 2019 award cycle, the college invites nominations for individuals from the practice-based (non-academic/research) community.

Download a nomination form

Criteria for the Recent Graduate Award:

  • Have completed a formal College of Public Health educational program in the past ten years (2009 or later);
  • Have achieved important and promising accomplishments during that period and have exceptional promise for future success; and
  • Have demonstrated strong interest and commitment to the Mission, Vision, and Values of the College of Public Health.

Criteria for the Career Alumni Award:

  • Have completed a formal educational program offered by the College of Public Health (including formal educational programs presently or previously offered by academic units in the College of Public Health);
  • Have made significant contributions in their discipline and field of practice throughout their career and attained widespread recognition and respect for their accomplishments; and
  • Have demonstrated strong interest and commitment to the mission, vision, and values of the College of Public Health.

Download a nomination form here or call 319-384-4277.

Email all nomination materials to or mail to:

Tara McKee, Alumni Relations Coordinator
University of Iowa College of Public Health
145 N. Riverside Drive, S170 CPHB
Iowa City, IA 52242

Forms must be emailed or postmarked no later than February 28, 2019.

Grants will help develop strategies to combat addiction by native populations

A portrait of Anne Helene Skinstad, professor of Community and Behavioral Health at the university of Iowa College of Public Health.
Anne Helene Skinstad

Anne Helene Skinstad, clinical professor of community and behavioral health in the University of Iowa College of Public Health, has recently been awarded grants totaling $9.5 million over the next five years to help reduce drug and alcohol addiction among American Indian and Alaska Native populations.

The grants will benefit three initiatives Skinstad oversees in the College of Public Health: the National American Indian/Alaska Native Addiction Technology Transfer Center, which received $4 million; the Tribal Affairs Technology Transfer Center, which received $3 million; and the Tribal Affairs Prevention Technology Transfer Center, which received $2.5 million.

The grants were made by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

Housed in the College of Public Health, the national centers focus on American Indian and Alaska Native communities in Iowa and around the country, educating and training people who provide substance abuse treatment and counseling using culturally appropriate methods. The centers support professionals working with clients suffering from substance use and other behavioral health disorders, prominently including a native behavioral health workforce.

The centers also conduct conferences and leadership forums for tribal leaders who are working to reduce addiction among their communities.

Source: Iowa Now

New global collegiate partnerships now available in Kenya, Australia

global public health logoThe CPH Global Public Health Initiative is excited to announce new college-wide partnerships with two international institutions:

  • Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia
  • Tangaza University College in Nairobi, Kenya

Both universities are available as resources and potential partners for research, coursework, collaboration, and more.  All CPH faculty, students, and staff are encouraged to explore possible ideas of partnership with these institutions.

To learn more about the specialization of these universities as well as a number of other international research partners, organizations, and institutions, visit the Current Global Programs web page. To contact these partners or learn more about how you can utilize these partnerships, please email Sophie Switzer, Global Health Coordinator, at

Students interested in learning more about independent research projects abroad should start here:

Applications open for rural health and safety collaboratory, funding

The Iowa Institute of Public Health Research and Policy (IIPHRP) has several opportunities focused around the topic of rural health and safety.

Applications are now open for:

  • Rural Health and Safety Collaboratory.  The letter of intent is due January 14, 2019, and the full proposal is due on February 25, 2019.
  • Special Projects (up to $1,000)
  • Graduate Student Research Funds (up to $500)

Application forms and all the pertinent information can be found on the IIPHRP website:

Contact Vickie Miene, IIPHRP interim director, at if you have any questions.

UI College of Public Health and BLN announce Community Grant awards

Business Leadership Network logoThe University of Iowa College of Public Health and its Business Leadership Network announced seven award recipients under the fourth annual round of the Community Grant Program.

The recipients of the fourth round of funding are: Cerro Gordo County Department of Public Health, Mason City; Fort Dodge Community Foundation and United Way, Fort Dodge; Lee County Health Department, Fort Madison; Living Proof Exhibit, Davenport; Muscatine Center for Social Action, Muscatine; North Fayette Valley Community Coalition, Inc., Elgin; and Siouxland District Health Department, Sioux City. The organizations received cash grant awards of up to $3,000.

The grant program funds, in conjunction with an equal cash match from other organizations or businesses, will be used for public health-related initiatives and projects in the recipient communities.

Cerro Gordo County Department of Public Health will install sensory pathways within five elementary schools in Mason City and Clear Lake to provide a physical activity outlet for students to utilize between class times. Similar pathways have been found to improve attention and behaviors of students in the classroom, and provide a convenient and effective way for youth to engage in healthy lifestyle behaviors.

The Fort Dodge Community Foundation and United Way will provide beds and cribs for children living in poverty in Fort Dodge. Good sleep is critical for a child’s health, well-being, and ability to learn. A partnership with local schools, health care providers, the Webster County Health Department and nonprofits will help identify children who need beds.

Lee County Health Department, in conjunction with the Live Healthy Lee County Coalition, will plan three events at the three area farmers markets in Fort Madison, Montrose, and Keokuk. At the events, community partners will provide health and wellness information, health screenings, and promote biking to the markets with the goal of increasing participation in the markets and increasing awareness to community health services.

The Living Proof Exhibit uses the healing power of the arts to help individuals touched by cancer. Throughout the Quad Cities and in Muscatine, the grant will fund “Art-to-Go” boxes filled with a variety of art projects that cancer survivors and those undergoing treatment can use to help reduce stress, anxiety, and depression, and improve overall well-being.

The Muscatine Center for Social Action, the primary homeless service provider in Southeast Iowa, will work to increase hygienic and sustainable sleeping options for guests staying in their Emergency Overnight Shelter. Grant funds will help eradicate pests and provide new mattresses, washer and dryer, and storage containers for guests’ bedding.

The North Fayette Valley Community Coalition will provide the Youth Engaged in Leadership and Learning (YELL) program to North Fayette Valley Middle School students (grades 6-8). YELL teaches students to use their voice to address the concerns of their peers and community while making responsible and healthy choices. Students will work together to problem-solve, set goals, learn how to resolve conflicts, and make their school and community a better and safer place.

The Siouxland District Health Department will partner with two child care centers to implement the Nutrition and Physical Activity Self-Assessment for Child Care (NAP SACC). This evidence-based program will provide the centers with the tools to increase healthy food and physical activity options for younger children in the Siouxland area.

“These projects strengthen community health at the local level and make an impact where people live, work, and play,” says Edith Parker, dean of the University of Iowa College of Public Health. “This grant program demonstrates the college’s commitment to partnering with communities and businesses to enhance well-being across Iowa.”

The College of Public Health provided the grants as part of its Business Leadership Network (BLN) initiative. Some of the funds for the grant program are provided by the UI Provost’s Office of Outreach and Engagement, Iowa Farm Bureau Federation, and the Roy J. Carver Charitable Trust.

The BLN, established in 2011, fosters ongoing, mutually beneficial relationships between the College of Public Health and small and medium-sized businesses and communities in Iowa. Through these relationships, the college engages and collaborates with communities in development of cutting-edge, high impact public health research, enhances educational programs with service learning opportunities within businesses, and promotes a culture of health throughout communities.

The first round of grant funding was awarded in 2015. This fourth year’s grant funding was available to nonprofit organizations and local government entities across Iowa. Details about the grant program, as well as additional information about the Business Leadership Network is available at:

New report examines elder abuse in Iowa

older adult woman sitting in chairA new University of Iowa study finds that older Iowans who experience some form of abuse have little chance of experiencing any resolution. While most older Iowans are doing well, a large and growing number of Iowans over the age of 65 have become vulnerable, says researcher Brian Kaskie, associate professor of health management and policy at the University of Iowa College of Public Health.

The report, The Elder Abuse Pathway in East Central Iowa, was co-authored by Kaskie and Leonard Sandler, clinical professor of law and director of the Law and Policy Action Clinic at the University of Iowa College of Law.

Older persons face a number of age-related challenges, including diminishing cognitive capacity, increasing physical frailty, and social isolation, which can lead to dependence on others. The researchers identified five different kinds of abuse, exploitation, or neglect that can be experienced by older adults: neglect, self-neglect, financial exploitation, physical and psychological abuse, and sexual abuse and personal degradation.

Researchers examined activities concerning elder abuse in an area of east central Iowa covering more than 1,000 square miles and two metropolitan areas with a population of more than 300,000. To gather their data, the team held a series of meetings with public agents involved with addressing elder abuse. They also conducted interviews, compiled information from law enforcement, and reviewed laws, regulations, and other data.

The researchers found that prosecution of elder abuse is a relatively rare occurrence, meaning that abusers often go unpunished. According to Kaskie, much more could be done to protect older Iowans and prosecute alleged cases.

“Issues pertaining to older adults just do not seem to compete well among the many other priorities of health, law enforcement, and public health agencies,” Kaskie says “For example, while they are by no means sufficient, public efforts to raise awareness of child abuse seem to be much more developed, and there are comparatively higher amounts of public resources being directed to the identification and investigation of child abuse.”

Despite these many challenges, Kaskie thinks the state of Iowa is poised to take several steps forward in the coming year.

“The issue of elder abuse has become a top priority for many citizen based groups and the network of aging service providers,” he says. “There also have been some signs that the legislature and governor’s office may advance this agenda in 2019.”

Recommendations from the report include: increased funding for state and county attorneys to prosecute elder abuse; involving social workers and therapists in the investigative process; funding for individuals and organizations who can serve as guardians for elders; and public awareness campaigns.

“I am hopeful that the citizens of Iowa and the persons who represent them in our government come to see this as an important bi-partisan issue,” Kaskie says. “The number of older Iowans is not getting any smaller and elder abuse is something that is happening in all corners of the state.”

A PDF of the report is available.