The fall of each year is always a time of new beginnings, especially for academic institutions such as ours. We’re happy to welcome our students to the School of Public Health, whether it be here in Southern California, or as far as Madagascar and beyond through our distance learning programs. Our community extends far beyond the geographic boundaries of the campus. Graduates and students are scattered across the world, but we all stand together as members of the Public Health family, united in our quest to make public health personal.
I’m excited to share with you our plans to improve our students’ professional experience, and at the same time spread the public health message across the globe. Conventional classrooms and teaching are still in use, yet when it comes to reaching across borders and teaching our students in faraway countries, we must look to technology as our guide.
As you know, we have offered Master’s level programs online for a number of years. Building on this success, and in response to an expressed need from prospective students and employers, we have applied for and received approval to offer significant portions of our doctoral programs in an online format. The DrPH in Health Education, for example, is one of our most successful on-campus doctoral programs with many graduates who have entered the workforce as leaders in local, regional and national capacities. In addition, there are a number of Masters-level programs also available online that can be exported using synchronous (live, real-time) communications technology. Doing so will greatly enhance public health professionals who are eager to pursue graduate studies but are unable to come to the Loma Linda campus.
As we expand our program offerings, we ask that you consider making a gift toward creating a “smart classroom” in Nichol Hall.
Improving our technology to offer these courses around the world is critical for the School at this time. A smart classroom is a must to foster synchronous learning between the campus and distance-learning students who connect from the comfort of their homes, hotel rooms or offices. They all benefit from participating in real time class sessions. Observing the engagement—often cross-culturally—between the faculty on campus and students at great distances is amazing!
Allow me to share the words of one of our current students, Anna, who was able to join us from Saudi Arabia in live sessions of a Health Education course:
The online courses LLU offers provide the students with an excellent learning opportunity. But the live interaction enhances the educational experience tremendously. It adds that special touch that makes a student feel proud that he or she is a part of Loma Linda University.
The opportunity that Anna enjoyed can be exponentially multiplied to many others by improving the technology to make this happen on a greater scale. Many students from around the globe will benefit from the School’s ability to provide this learning medium. The smart classroom will be available not only for courses, but for conferences, meetings, and the opportunity to interact live with the community we serve across the globe.
I believe having a “smart classroom” would certainly expand the reach that Loma Linda University has around the world. “Live” distance education reaches beyond the classroom into any part of the world, making an indelible educational imprint in many remote areas.
A smart classroom will provide opportunities for teaching and learning with computers, specialized software, audience response technology, networking, and audiovisuals. Knowledge can be disseminated via webinars, teleconferencing, and recording of class sessions that can later be used for workforce development. It is a wonderful way to embrace the global community and bring its people to Nichol Hall.
We’ve got the space—you may remember it, it’s on Nichol Hall’s main floor, where Environmental Health is housed. Of the $200,000 we need to equip the room with the latest that communication technology enables, the school has contributed close to $50,000 (from tuition) in preparation for classes this fall. We ask that you support us to reach our goal.
Please look at the enclosed brochure and reply form for some of the conceptual elements to be included in the new classroom. In it, you’ll note special gift opportunities you may wish to consider. For example, you may wish to sponsor a “smart seat” for $3,500, or a specialized piece of equipment to realize the classroom. Whichever you choose, please consider making a significant gift to bring the School’s educational capacities fully into the present Century.
Once again, thank you for giving to this special project.
Tricia Penniecook, MD, MPH
Dean, School of Public Health
P.S. Join us in our quest to extend the School’s educational capacities around the globe. Please make a gift today!
To Learn More (pdf)
Response card (pdf)
Olukemi Famurewa Adeoye, BDS, MPH
School of Public Health
Loma Linda University
24951 North Circle Drive Nichol Hall 1708
Loma Linda, CA 92350
Office: (909) 558-7013
Fax: (909) 558-7948