University of South Florida

USF COPH fills National Public Health Week with awareness and community events

The USF College of Public Health hosted National Public Health week with a series of events spanning from film screenings to blood drives. It’s an opportunity to raise awareness for the far-reaching impact that public health has. The USF College of Public Health named Celeste Philip, MD, MPH the 2016 Florida Outstanding Woman in Public Health and recognized her April 6 a special awards ceremony.

Dr. Philip serves as the interim state surgeon general, Florida Department of Health (DOH), only the second woman to lead the department. She is president-elect of the American Heart Association’s Greater Southeast Affiliate and serves on the Health Initiatives Committee Advisory Group to Florida Board of Governors.

“I would encourage more young people to think about public health as a career,” Dr. Philip said. “I was fortunate to be exposed to it while in high school and so I had the opportunity to thinking about what that meant to take advantage of my college years to explore options and be exposed to different people and different career opportunities and there is a role for everyone health.”

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Dr. Celeste Philip accepts the Public Health Woman of the Year Award from Dr. Donna Petersen.


The College bestows the award each year to a woman whose career accomplishments and leadership contribute significantly to the field of public health in Florida. This year’s April 6 awards ceremony also included awards for student research, Excellence in Teaching, which went to Jamie Corvin, PhD, MSPH, and Outstanding Alumni, which went to Michael Pentella, PhD, D(ABMM), as well as recognition of Delta Omega inductees and academic scholarship recipients. In addition, special recognition was given to Angelia Sanders, MPH, who is the recipient of the 2015 Outstanding Alumni award but was unable to attend that year.

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Alumni award winners Angelia Sanders and Dr. Michael Pentella.

The morning ceremony was just one event of many as part of National Public Health Week, organized and hosted by the USF College of Public Health and supporting organizations. Events filled the days and included:

USF’s National Public Health Week events started Friday, April 1, with Walk Like MADD, a service event for Mothers Against Drunk Driving with student led interactive activities.

From Friday, April 1 through Sunday, April 3, Rotary Camp Florida hosted Campamento Alegría for Latina Cancer Survivors, a service event for students.

On Saturday, April 2, volunteers from the USF Health Service Corps hosted a Spring Fling Health Fair at Mort Elementary School. The service event for USF Health students involved educational activities for children and opportunities for health screenings.

On Monday, April 4, there was an evening screening of “Someone You Love – The HPV Epidemic” that included a panel discussion and information about COPH-led HPV research and initiatives.

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Dr. Ellen Daley welcomes guests to the screening of Someone You Love: The HPV Epidemic.

Tuesday, April 5, was Give Life Day and in the heart of COPH faculty, staff and students donated blood and registered for the National Marrow Donor Program, as well as learned how to save a life by performing Citizen CPR (below).

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COPH students and recruiters were at the Bull Market USF MSC Plaza on Wednesday, April 6, offering interactive activities and career exhibits, sharing information about academic programs, and helping participants discover that public health is everywhere.

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Sharing info about public health at the USF BULL Market outside the Marshall Student Center.

World Health Day was Thursday, April 7, and the COPH Samuel P. Bell III Auditorium was filled as a panel of USF Health and local experts lead a discussion on the epidemiology, transmission and prevention of diseases associated with the Aedes aegypti mosquito, especially diseases like Dengue, Chikungunya and Zika, which are emerging vector-borne diseases.

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Dr. Boo Kwa introduces Dr. Douglas Holt, Dr. Sarah Obican, and Dr. Robert Novak for panel discussion on emerging vector-borne diseases.

A community health fair was hosted at Metropolitan Ministries on Friday, April 8, providing a service event for USF Health students to lead educational activities for children and participate in health screenings.

COPH faculty and students heard about the newest work from researchers and ways students can become more involved in research at the This is Public Health! Research Seminar Series, held Friday, April 8.

A Family Affair Community Health Fair, held Saturday, April 9, offered a service event for USF Health students to lead educational activities for children.

The culmination of the week was the Annual Potluck BBQ at USF Riverfront Park on Saturday, April 9. Faculty, staff, students and their families all gathered for a fun afternoon of food, fitness and friendship,

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A Food Drive ran from April 1 to 11 to collect donations of boxed and canned food items that were given to the Feed-A-Bull Food Pantry.

Beyond the actual week, there will be a Public Health! Graduate Fair held at Saturday, April 23, from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at The WELL. The Fair is an open house for public health, pharmacy, medicine, nursing, physical therapy, biomedical sciences and athletic training and offers prospective students with information from current students and opportunities to speak with academic recruiters and learn how USF Health is making life better in Tampa Bay and around the world! Contact

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