The UNT Health Science Center School of Public Health (SPH) recently celebrated National Public Health Week by recognizing 2016-17 academic year student, faculty and staff accomplishments at its annual End of Year Celebration.
MHA student Chelsea Kleen was presented with the Richard S. Kurz Award, given to an outstanding public health graduate exemplifying the leadership, accomplishments and visionary qualities of the school’s Dean Emeritus, who led the SPH from 2007 to 2015. This award was established in 2012 by the school’s faculty leadership.
At the ceremony, two SPH students were admitted into the Alpha Sigma Chapter of Delta Omega public health national honor society: Chelsea Kleen (MHA program) and Heidi Threadgill-Honza (MPH Professional Option). These two students, as presented by faculty member Dr. Brad Cannell, were selected for their “demonstrated academic excellence, leadership, activity and commitment to and in the field of public health and ensuring the health of all people.”
Alumni inductees into Delta Omega were Dr. Diana Cervantes, Chief Epidemiologist with the Texas Health Department of State Health Services (DSHS) Region 2/3, and Sophia Anyatonwu, Epidemiologist II/Regional FLU Surveillance Coordinator with DSHS Region 7.
Dr. Katherine Fogelberg from the SPH faculty was also inducted into Delta Omega, as was an honorary community recipient, Jon Wilcox. Wilcox was introduced by Fort Worth community leader Libby Watson, who was named to Delta Omega by the UNTHSC School of Public Health in 2014. Wilcox has long been involved in volunteerism and leadership for non-profit organizations and public health-related programs and activities on both a local level and with a national/international scope.
Students named to the SPH Dean’s List were Amy Board, Clara Ramirez, Erica Stockbridge, Heidi Honza, Chelsea Kleen, Ruchi Shah, Rasheedat Sadiq-Onilenia, Kristyn Mathewson, Thomas Gans, Fanni Mandy, Jennifer Liou, Sarah Abdelhadi, Ashnia Taher and Gopi Vinjamuri.
This year’s Leon Brachman Award was presented to Fanni Mandy (MPH – Epidemiology). The award is given annually to a public health student in the MPH or MHA program demonstrating exemplary academic achievement in his or her graduate course of study. The award is named in honor of the community leader and philanthropist who helped establish the UNTHSC School of Public Health in 1999.
The 2017 Kenneth Cooper Award winner was Victoria Kwentua (MPH – Maternal and Child Health). This award – presented to an outstanding MPH or MHA student demonstrating excellence and quality in the application of research methods in preparation for the thesis or other research activities – is named for best-selling author and internationally known health/wellness guru Dr. Kenneth H. Cooper, who started the Cooper Aerobics Center in Dallas in 1970 and pioneered the concept of preventive medicine and healthy lifestyle.
Pooja Mehta (MPH – Epidemiology) was presented with the Bob Crow Award, named for the former executive director of the Texas charitable Amon G. Carter Foundation and past member of the school’s Steering Committee, recognizing an outstanding MPH or MHA student with exemplary leadership and service to the school and community.
Amy Board (MPH Professional Option) was presented with the Dean’s Award for Scholarly Excellence in Academics, and Erica Stockbridge (PhD – Health Services and Policy Research) received the Dean’s Award for Scholarly Excellence in Research.
The UNTHSC Public Health Student Government Association also presented honors, highlighting faculty and staff members for going above and beyond in support of SPH students.
Recognized were Dr. Subhash Aryal for Outstanding Faculty in Teaching; Dr. Tania Lopez for Outstanding Faculty in Online Teaching; Dr. Katherine Fogelberg, Outstanding Faculty Advisor; and Elizabeth Heyerdahl as Outstanding Public Health Staff Member.