Congratulations to the College of Public Health


Elected officials, deans, and community members across the nation congratulate Virginia's first and only College of Public Health

Elected and Appointed Officials 

As a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, & Pensions Committee, I have long supported expanding the public health and social services workforce to increase access to health care and improve the health of Virginians. I commend George Mason University for establishing the Commonwealth’s first College of Public Health to help train this critical workforce. The College’s work on important issues such as mental health, suicide prevention, opioid misuse, and providing health services to the underserved, is vital to our region’s future health. As someone dealing with minor Long COVID symptoms, I also believe the College’s research on this and other infectious diseases is critical in mitigating future pandemics. 

Tim Kaine
U.S. Senate, Virginia 

George Mason University plays a critical role in strengthening Northern Virginia’s health care workforce and has long been a trusted partner in our efforts to improve access to affordable health care here in Fairfax and Prince William counties. The newly established College of Public Health at George Mason is another step toward cementing Northern Virginia as a world-class center of excellence in health care, and I look forward to working with them to reduce disparities in health care training and delivery and to improve the health and quality of life of all Northern Virginians. 

Gerry Connolly 
U.S. House of Representatives  
VA 11th District 

Health care in Virginia is becoming increasingly more complex. Universities like George Mason play a pivotal role in helping navigate our Commonwealth through the challenges facing our citizens today by expanding the health workforce and keeping communities healthy.

John Littel 
Commonwealth of Virginia
Secretary of Health and Human Resources 

Community and Workforce 

I am so excited to hear that George Mason University will be opening the first College of Public Health in our region. Inova and Mason are long-standing partners, and we often hire Mason students and graduates who have knowledge of and experience with under-resourced communities. As we strive to improve the health of the communities we are so privileged to serve, it is vital that we have the necessary diverse workforce to make this vision a reality. I look forward to our partnership with the new College of Public Health. 

Karen Berube, MSW, LCSW, CSAC 
Chief, Community Health and Health Equity 
SVP, Inova Health System 

In standing up the first College of Public Health in Virginia, George Mason University is conveying significant benefits to the state, the region, and our nation as a whole. The demand for public health professionals locally is robust and the need for such professionals across our country and around the globe will undoubtedly continue to grow. COVID-19 has underscored the significance of the public health workforce to the health, security, and well-being of us all. The top-quality educational experience GMU provides is an ideal launchpad for the public health leaders of tomorrow. 

Eleanor Dehoney, MSPH
Vice President, Policy & Advocacy   

ASTHO is thrilled to see the College of Public Health launch as the first and only College of Public Health In Virginia. I believe demand for advanced training in public health will continue to grow as more master’s level students graduate and seek additional training in the areas of great need including the links between healthcare and public health, behavioral health and public health, public health policy, and many others. As an employer in the region George Mason University and the College are well positioned to implement high-quality education and workforce initiatives that are tailored to the needs of our unique region and to health agencies nationwide and have hired several MPH students. At the national-level, I am confident that Mason will be a source of doctoral-prepared graduates to lead governmental public health agencies and contribute research and analysis to the field on health prevention and health promotion. 

Michael R. Fraser, PhD, MS, CAE, FCPP
Chief Executive Officer, Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO)

I am so pleased that George Mason has established the College of Public Health at George Mason University. In many ways, Mason’s College of Public Health represents ASPPH’s vision for the future of public health education – one focused on diversity, equity, inclusion, and social justice. Mason’s long-standing commitment to inclusive excellence fosters an environment where diverse perspectives are welcome and nurtured to thrive. The interprofessional nature of the College further strengthens collaboration and inspires new approaches to inquiry. Mason is the ideal location for establishing the first College of Public Health in Virginia. 

Laura Magaña 
President & CEO  
Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health (ASPPH) 

George Mason University’s commitment to inclusion and diversity in its classrooms is what is needed to ensure that our boardrooms have well-prepared leaders to guide future healthcare policy as well as to meet the leadership challenges associated with providing efficient, consistent high-quality care. I have always been honored to be a guest lecturer at Mason.  The combination of high-performing students and an atmosphere that allows for candid discussion is educational for all parties, students and lecturers. 

James B. Sherwood, PhD, FACHE
VP, Business Development & Strategy

Frederick Health

Academic Community

Congratulations to George Mason University on their new College of Public Health. The diverse student body and interprofessional degrees offered at Mason make this an ideal location for launching the first College of Public Health in Virginia. We look forward to continuing collaborations with Mason faculty to improve health and well-being globally. 

Sandro Galea, MD, DrPH 
Dean and Robert A Knox Professor 
School of Public Health 
Boston University 

Our College of Public Health sees the tremendous value of building the next generation of public health professionals who are as diverse as the communities they serve. We commend Dean Melissa Perry and her team at George Mason University for sharing this vision and for becoming the first College of Public Health in Virginia. Our college looks forward to celebrating what Mason’s faculty, staff and students will do in this new capacity to help serve the greater good. 

Dean Tomás R. Guilarte, PhD, MS 
Robert Stempel College of Public Health & Social Work  
Florida International University 

As the only publicly supported school of public health in Maryland, the University of Maryland School of Public Health in College Park welcomes the College of Public Health at George Mason University to the mission of educating the next generation of public health leaders in our region. It takes a village to tackle all the issues ahead of us in public health. Great to see that village expand!

Boris Lushniak, MD, MPH 
Dean and Professor 
School of Public Health 
University of Maryland 

The establishment of the College of Public Health at George Mason University is a significant milestone that underscores the centrality of public health in our world and the commitment of the university to the field. Our experience has shown that increasing the visibility of public health among prospective students, as well as partners in academia, government, and non-profits, can help to address critical workforce needs, attract new resources, and facilitate impactful research and outreach. 

Rodney Lyn, PhD, MS 
Dean and Professor  
School of Public Health
Georgia State University  

We are thrilled that George Mason University has launched the first College of Public Health in the state of Virginia. This confirms that University leaders understand and appreciate the value of public health in an equitable and just society and that they recognize the incredible talent and accomplishments of their public health program. Though from modest beginnings, the public health program at Mason always had a bold vision and they are carrying that vision to the next level, elevating their already stellar undergraduate and graduate degree programs, extensive body of engaged research, and a clear commitment to the community in this new enterprise. We wish them much success! 

Donna J. Petersen, ScD, MHS, CPH 
Chief Health Officer 
Senior Associate Vice President, USF Health 
Interim Associate Vice Provost, Student Health and Wellness 
Dean, College of Public Health 
University of South Florida