By: Morgan Zabow – Environmental Health
Climate change has been described as the defining public health crisis of the century. From increases in heat related illnesses, vector borne diseases, allergens, and injuries from severe storms, climate change impacts are vast and growing. More and more health departments across the country are beginning to establish climate and health branches in recognizing the importance of addressing climate change at the local, state, and federal levels. Therefore, it is imperative that public health and health professional students are trained in climate and health to further research, policy, and advocacy on this topic. In order to address this growing need, Rollins established a new certificate program in January 2021 in hopes of educating students on the science of climate change, the health impacts, and to learn about what we can do to adapt and mitigate climate change.
There are many different climate change courses available, including two required classes (global climate change and advanced climate change), as well as planetary health, the built environment, climate justice communications, public health consequences of disasters, and more. Professors across Rollins, and especially in the Gangarosa Department of Environmental Health, are incredibly knowledgeable about the topic and many are conducting research projects finding more links between climate change and human health. In addition to coursework, students will pursue a climate change focused capstone or thesis. Furthermore, this certificate allows for students to be more competitive when applying for jobs by having this additional training. Current students (first and second years), as well as newly admitted students, are eligible for this certificate.
I have been fortunate enough to be in the first class of students eligible for this certificate, and I couldn’t think of a better training program for climate and health. I’ve been lucky enough to blend my education with climate change work experiences through my REAL position and APE, and my capstone project. The climate and health program at Rollins will fuel passion for addressing climate change and climate injustice, in hopes of living in a world with clean energy where no one is vulnerable to climate change’s impacts.
For more information about this exciting new training program, visit the website here.
Cheers to the future climate leaders of Rollins!