UC Regents committee OKs UCSD request to launch School of Public Health

SAN DIEGO — UC San Diego announced Wednesday that it received approval from the UC Board of Regents’ Academic and Student Affairs Committee to establish a School of Public Health.

The university announced its intent to launch the school last year when the Herbert and Nicole Wertheim Foundation made a $25 million donation to kickstart the effort. Herbert, a scientist, clinician, entrepreneur, philanthropist and the inventor of eyeglass tints that block ultraviolet light, and his wife Nicole made the donation for their 48th wedding anniversary.

UCSD Chancellor Pradeep Khosla and Health Sciences Vice Chancellor David Brenner have also committed $7 million in new funding for the school, which will fund five $1 million faculty chairs and reserve $500,000 for four years to recruit faculty members and cover startup costs.

According to the university, most of the additional resources required to establish the school will come from existing resources and will not require new state funding.

The full Board of Regents is expected to vote on the proposal Thursday.

“UC San Diego’s new School of Public Health is the next logical step in the evolution of our public health programs, initiatives, clinics, undergraduate degree program and existing faculty expertise,” says UCSD Chancellor Pradeep Khosla. “With a focus on public health, we can define the future where medicine, biology, engineering and public policy come together.”

The school will include classes for Bachelor of Science, Master of Public Health, Master of Science and Master of Advanced Study degrees as well as UCSD’s doctorate in philosophy.

Two UC campuses — UC Berkeley and UCLA — have a School of Public Health, and UC Irvine, UC Merced, UC Davis and UC San Francisco are also considering establishing similar schools.

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