Health Promotion, Social & Behavioral Health

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Department of Health Promotion, Social & Behavioral Health

Chair’s Welcome

The Department of Health Promotion, Social and Behavioral Health envisions itself as a center of excellence and innovation dedicated to health promotion and disease prevention in Nebraska, nationally and internationally.  Integrating education, research, and public health service, the Department aims to enable populations and communities to achieve optimal health – a balance of physical, mental, and social health – through social and behavioral change and the creation of environments that are conducive to healthy lifestyles.

To meet the public health challenges of the 21st Century, the Department believes that critical thinking and outside-the-box training are more urgently needed than ever in Nebraska and around the world.  Teaching in the Department emphasizes trans-disciplinary, inter-professional, and cross-cultural training.  To this effect, the Department serves as the home of MPH concentrations in Health Promotion, Social Marketing and Health Communication, Maternal and Child Health, and Community-Oriented Primary Care.  In addition, the Department co-teaches the MPH concentration in Health Policy as well as the MS program in Emergency Preparedness.  The Department also has a rigorous PhD program in Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research as well as dual degree programs with medicine, allied health, law, and social work.

To uncover the needs of communities, to understand key drivers of public health burdens in the 21st century, and to design and test effective and sustainable prevention interventions, the Department conducts basic and translational research in a broad range of domains, including but not limited to adolescent risk behaviors, tobacco and substance use, nutrition, physical activity and inactivity, obesity prevention and control, environmental sustainability and health, cross-cultural health and health inequities, maternal and child health, school health, sexual health, social marketing, behavioral economics, consumer behavior, clinical and public health ethics and law, and aesthetic and humanistic influences on health.   The Department’s research draws upon and integrates diverse methodologies and frameworks, including qualitative and quantitative techniques.  In addition, the Department is also at the forefront of integrating systems science frameworks and methods, including the use of computational modeling, with conventional analytical methods to tackle the complexity of modern day public health issues.

Last but not least, the Department is deeply committed to and connected with the community.  Faculty in the Department serve as leaders of and advocates for a healthier and more just society in local communities and beyond.  Many also serve as experts and advisors to the U.S. Government, funding agencies, local and state health-oriented organizations, professional associations, the Nebraska Medical Center Medical Ethics Committee and its Ethics Consultation Service, and the UNMC Institutional Review Board, among others.

This is truly an exciting time to be in Health Promotion!  The Department is growing rapidly and is poised to be on the cutting edge of public health science and practice.  I welcome you to learn more about our Department and our profession through our website and by contacting us directly should you need further information on our programs!

Terry T-K Huang, PhD, MPH, CPH
Chair and Professor

Contact us
Department of Health Promotion, Social & Behavioral Health

UNMC College of Public Health
984365 Nebraska Medical Center
Omaha, NE 68198-4365

Phone: 402-559-4325
Fax: 402-559-3773