Health in America
Health in America
Health in America

Welcome Message

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Chancellor Matthew Goldstein

I am very pleased to introduce the CUNY/NewYork Times in College 2011 calendar, "Health in America." Published on the heels of the passage of federal health care legislation, it is a timely history of health care, showing how it has evolved over time, along with public health practices, nutrition awareness, hospitals, and health insurance.

This publication also emerges from CUNY's Decade of Science initiative and our historic commitment to invest in programs at the cutting edge of health and science research and education. In fact, since the founding of the University, five alumni have won the Nobel Prize in medicine.

Today, that commitment manifests itself in several ways. To address the chronic nursing shortage, CUNY has focused on increasing the capacity and improving the quality of the nursing programs that are offered at 13 CUNY campuses. In 2008-09 alone, CUNY graduated nearly 1,500 nurses. Working in collaboration with the health care industry and its unions, such as Local 1199, S.E.I.U., the University also supports career ladder programs for health care workers.

CUNY's Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education continues to be a leader in medical education. The school offers an innovative five-year BS/MD program at City College, where students complete their BS and the first two years of medical school and then transfer to another medical school to complete their studies. Ninety-seven percent of graduates receive medical degrees after transferring. More than half of the most recent entering class comprises students from populations underrepresented in the medical profession.

Dr. Eleanore Wurtzel, professor of biological sciences at Lehman College, incorporates genomic tools to investigate carotenoid accumulation in important food crops such as maize, wheat, and rice directed at solving a global health problem of vitamin A deficiency that affects 250,000,000 children worldwide.

CUNY has also reinvigorated its research efforts through faculty hiring, graduate student support, and facilities upgrades and construction. Under the leadership of Vice Chancellor for Research Gillian Small and Vice Chancellor for Facilities Planning, Construction and Management Iris Weinshall, CUNY is constructing the Advanced Science Research Center (ASRC) on the City College campus. The 200,000-square-foot ASRC will support high-end research throughout the University in five key and emerging science disciplines: photonics, nanotechnology, water and environmental sensing, structural biology and neuroscience. The ASRC will help CUNY attract and retain top-level scientists, compete successfully for large collaborative research grants, and expand our capacity to commercialize our intellectual property. CUNY has already recruited nearly 100 full-time faculty in science, technology, engineering and math.

The University has also launched the CUNY School of Public Health at Hunter College, which consolidated the public health programs of the Graduate Center and Hunter, Lehman, and Brooklyn Colleges. The school, which focuses on urban health issues, is led by its founding dean, Dr. Kenneth Olden, former head of the National Institutes of Environmental Health and the National Toxicology Program. CUNY has broken ground on a new building in East Harlem that will house both the School of Public Health and the Hunter College School of Social Work. Working collaboratively, these institutions will address critical areas of public health, including asthma, cancer and diabetes. As Dr. Olden has noted, "Because of the population diversity in New York City, the knowledge and best practices that will be developed here at the School of Public Health can be applied around the world."

It is my hope that all of CUNY's educational and research programs can have that kind of local and global reach.

Matthew Goldstein, Chancellor

Dr. Jill Bargonetti, professor of biological sciences at Hunter College, and her laboratory group are currently working to determine if DNA damage caused by various chemotherapeutic drugs (alone and in combination) are able to bring about differential activation of the p53 target genes as well as activate alternative cell death pathways, critical to cancer research.
Model of CUNY’s Advanced Science Research Center on the campus of City College in Harlem.
Founding Dean Kenneth Olden of the CUNY School of Public Health at Hunter College