2023 marks the celebration of the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the LSUHSC-NO School of Public Health.  As the new year begins, Dr. Edward Trapido, ScD, FACE has stepped in as Interim Dean while we plan a national search to lead the school into its next phase of growth.  Dr. Trapido is a professor and the current Associate Dean for Research. He is also Deputy Director for Population Science in the Stanley S. Scott Cancer Center, and the Coordinator for LSU Health Sciences Center’s research on the Gulf Oil Spill.

Dr. Trapido notes that this is a critical time for public health. “Public Health is at an inflection point following the pandemic, and there are pressing issues that need to be tackled. It is clear that yesterday’s training is not adequate to solve tomorrow’s problems. In harmony with the Health Science Center, the School of Public Health will strengthen its capabilities to address population health in its most pressing domains. I will strive to be a servant leader during this interim period and steer the way forward in research, teaching, and public health practice. I want to thank Dean Smith for his work during the last several years.“

Public Health at LSU Health Sciences Center has had a long and distinguished history in tropical medicine and other fields of study in the School of Medicine dating back to 1931. Its programs were incorporated in the Department of Pathology in the 1980s. It was reactivated as a free standing Department in 1992. Since then it has grown in size and importance through its three-part mission of education, research and service.
In 1995 the Department launched its first programmatic initiative in proposing the MPH degree program in Community/Preventive Medicine, which was subsequently approved by the Board of Regents. Enrollment was limited to students pursuing other graduate programs in the Medical, Dental, Allied Health, Nursing and Graduate schools of LSUHSC.

In 2003 the Department was reorganized as a School of Public Health. It offered MPH degrees with concentrations in Biostatistics, Epidemiology, and Environmental / Occupational Health Sciences in the fall of 2004 as well as a Master’s of Science in Biostatistics. Concentrations in the MPH degree in Behavioral/Community Health Sciences and Health Policy and Systems Management were added in the fall of 2005. Three PhD programs were established in Biostatistics (2007), Epidemiology (2007) and Community Health (2009).