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Center for a Livable Future

 

July 5, 2017

MPH Concentration in Food Systems Approved by the Maryland Higher Education Commission

One of the first programs of its kind will be offered by CLF and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health during the 2017-18 Academic Year


The Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future (CLF) will give students the opportunity to gain a robust understanding of public health challenges as they relate to the food system with a new concentration for Masters of Public Health (MPH) students at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. There is only one other food system concentration in a Council on Education for Public Health-accredited school or program of study.

Since 2014, CLF has offered a certificate in Food Systems, the Environment, and Public Health, which has been earned by more than 50 students. The new MPH concentration will include a minimum of 18 credits of required and elective courses, monthly group mentoring meetings with CLF faculty and staff, other opportunities to engage with the Center, and a capstone experience.

“The concentration will offer a core group of MPH students the opportunity to focus their coursework on food systems, engage in service-learning, explore sustainable farming methods at CLF's Food System Lab, and learn from leaders in the field as well as community members and peers,” said Roni Neff, PhD, assistant professor in the Bloomberg School’s Department of Environmental Health and Engineering and co-faculty director of the concentration. “Our goal is to challenge students to think critically about key food systems problems and help them build the practical and relational skills, the knowledge, and the real world perspectives needed to address them.”

While an increasing number of undergraduate and graduate schools are offering degree programs in food systems studies, the grounding of CLF’s Food Systems concentration within the field of public health offers unique benefits to students. The concentration brings together several traditional public health focus areas, including nutrition, environmental health, systems-thinking, social justice, policy, culture, behavior change, and communications and research methodology. 

“In Baltimore and around the globe, many of the greatest public health challenges we face have a connection to the food system,” said Keeve Nachman, PhD, assistant professor in the Bloomberg School’s Department of Environmental Health and Engineering and co-faculty director of the concentration. “This concentration will prepare the next generation of public health leaders to effect positive food system change in their work, wherever their career paths take them.”

For more information about the MPH Concentration in Food Systems and Public Health, click here.