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Making a Difference: Academic Health Department

The Mission

Academic Health Department is a collaborative relationship between public health practice and academia. AHD provides mutual benefits in teaching, research, and service. In this partnership, academia informs the practice of public health, while the governmental public health agency informs the academic program. This University of Tennessee program was created in March, 2011 and is a national model for collegiate and professional public health affiliations. The program brings together nine faculty members and over 40 UT students.

The Partners

Knox County Health Department and UT Department of Public Health.

Impact on UT

ADH3This opportunity to work in the public health setting provides students with field placement and internships. AHD provides faculty with practice-based research opportunities and facilitates the delivery of service-learning courses, by involving staff at the Knox County Health Department who are closely connected to communities throughout Knox County.

Impact on Community

The community benefits from student work that thus far has had an average estimated value of more than $130,000 per academic year. Health department staff benefit further from professional development opportunities provided through partnerships with UT faculty to attend and present at national public health conferences, co-author journal articles, contribute to courses in the academic setting, and participate in practice-based research for the development of evidence-based practices and programs.

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Public Health UTK
National Public Health Week 2015
Annual Report 2013-14
AHD Review for Year2


Julie Grubaugh (MPH),, 865-974-9277

Click here to read about more Partnerships that Make a Difference.