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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Lecture series unites architecture and public health departments

Public+Health
Photo by PROVIDED
Public Health

The Texas A&M College of Architecture, the Center for Health Systems & Design, Center for Health Organization Transformation (CHOT) and the School of Public Health at Texas A&M University have pulled together for a semester long lecture, credit bearing, series designed to bring industry leading experts to discuss the topic of population health, a challenge students in both the fields of health and architecture are preparing to face.
According to George Mann, lecture co-coordinator and holder of the Ronald L. Skaggs, FAIA Endowed Professor in Health Facilities Design, the semester-long series, titled “The Global Impact of the Concept of Population Health on the Design of Health Networks & Health Facilities,” is designed to give Texas A&M students and faculty the opportunity to interact and collaborate with industry leaders to take on the challenge of maintaining healthy populations.
“The whole theme is population health,” Mann said. “It could be a population of Texas, it could be the population of the whole country of Nigeria, it could be the population of Texas A&M or it could be a military population. As a whole, we want to think of [the population] as a community and how the community’s health is affected.”
Mann said that the seriesis aimed at providing Texas A&M students and faculty with the unique opportunity to network and learn from a variety of professionals in both the public health and architecture field.
Bita Kash, associate professor at the School of Public Health, director of NSF Center for Health Organization Transformation (CHOT), and lecture series co-coordinator said that the idea of promoting population health is essentially making communities able to promote physical and healthy lifestyles.
“It’s not just facility design where you see architecture and health connect at the public level,” Kash said. “The ultimate goal of a health care provider is to keep people healthy. The design of your environment — the buildings you work in, your community, your neighborhoods, landscapes — they have a very clear association with your health status, and that is something that has been researched and needs to be researched further.”
Zhipeng Lu, associate director of the Center for Health Systems & Design, senior lecturer of architecture, and lecture co-coordinator said that the most important thing for people to take advantage of is the recent focus on healthcare.
“It’s the current trend for the whole country, even the whole world,” said Lu. “We have to look at the continuum of health, not just fix the problems — the mental problem, the physical problem, the whole body, but we have to shift the focus on how to keep people healthy.”
The series will continue every Friday through December 2 at 11:30 a.m. in Room 208 of Scoates Hall. A similar series will be offered next semester for a one-hour credit listed under both the School of Architecture and the School of Public Health.

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