A Message from the Dean

Welcome to the Yale School of Public Health. This year, I join you in starting a new journey at YSPH at a time of unprecedented public health challenges—but also at a moment of tremendous opportunity.

Our school is transitioning to independence at Yale following its century-plus history, and the world is at the cusp of change. The broad societal impacts of public health, the need for rigorous innovation, and the demand for the next generation of diverse public health leaders have never been more evident. There is no better place to understand and prepare to meet those challenges than here—and no time more important than now.

You are entering a public health landscape awash with both threats and opportunities. The COVID-19 pandemic laid bare longstanding weaknesses and inequities in our public health and health care systems. Firearm injury, addiction, and climate change are issues growing in urgency. At the same time, too many in the U.S. and around the globe continue to face persistent problems such as the lack of clean water, the spread of vector-borne diseases, and the effect of stigma, racism, and marginalization.

At YSPH, we work on and lead change in each of these areas and more, as will you during your time here. Working with our superb faculty, staff, and fellow students, you will become adept at measuring and defining health problems, gain experience in designing and implementing equitable, effective policies and practices, and, importantly, develop comfort in communicating the value of this work. You will have the opportunity to explore course topics ranging from health justice to humanitarian response, to digital health, to modeling, to social entrepreneurship, and beyond. 

You may take these learnings and pursue more education, public service, or a career in the private sector. But wherever it is that you go next, we are confident that you will use your YSPH education to improve the physical, mental, and social health of the people you serve.

You can and will make a difference. Together, we can chart a course for impact and positive change. The Yale School of Public Health—the entire Yale University community—offers unique possibilities for research and learning. As you start this academic year, I encourage you to cross boundaries. Take risks. Challenge yourself and those around you. Be courageous and open-minded. Pursue justice. We’re here for you, across and beyond this incredible journey.

On behalf of myself, but also the rest of the YSPH community, I am thrilled to have you here alongside me. You are, as they say, in the right place at the right time.

Megan L. Ranney, M.D., M.P.H.
Dean, Yale School of Public Health