A Large Dose of TED

TED Talks LogoIf you are ever in need of some inspiration (and who isn’t?), just look to TED.com – a sight dedicated to sharing “ideas worth spreading”. When it comes to public health, simply do a search in their repository of TED Talks and you’ll find about 118 different talks that are relevant to some aspect in public health.

Before you say to yourself “I don’t have time to watch a TED Talk,” you may want to consider the following:

  • TED Talks range anywhere from 5 and 20 minutes.
    Watch one during lunch or when you need a little break from the day-to-day tasks. Grab a few co-workers, hover around the computer, watch and be inspired. Or, start the weekly office meeting with a viewing. If you have time to check your Facebook news feed or forward funny YouTube videos to your friends, then you have time to watch a TED Talk!
  • Watching a TED Talk may align with Essential Public Health Services.
    Let’s look at EPHS #10. It states “Research for new insights and innovative solutions to health problems.” Many of the TED Talks invite viewers to reflect on community problems and local health issues from a fresh or new perspective. In fact, some talks go so far as to offer additional ways to contribute to their on-going discussions about a topic. Isn’t this the start of research? Couldn’t a series of ideas spark new conversations in your organization that eventually lead to new programs or processes to solve local health problems?
  • TED Talks may improve your Core Competencies.
    For instance, the core competency under the Leadership and Systems’ Thinking Domain states “[8A2] Describes how public health operates within a larger system.” Several TED Talks often provide meaningful insights into public health networks and systems. Talks given by top public health experts often share where these systems have failed (are failing) and where they succeeded (are succeeding). Don’t believe me? Just watch Laurie Garrett’s talk on “Lessons Learned from the 1918 flu.”

Don’t know where to start? No problem! Here are the Top 10 TED Talks on Public Health. At the very least, watch one of those!


Free Webinar: Core Competencies of Public Health with Dr. Adewale Troutman!

The Center for Leadership in Public Health Practice just announced an upcoming FREE webinar “Core Competencies in Public Health” hosted by Dr. Adewale Troutman, MD, MPH, CPH.

Date: March 18, 2013
Time: 10 – 11:15 a.m.
Presenter: Dr. Adewale Troutman
Registration Deadline: March 15, 2013

Summary: The Core Competencies for Public Health Professionals are broad sets of skills that are useful in the public health field. These skills strengthen the public health workforce at all career levels and help improve performance.

Audience: This course is designed for public health workers and Florida Department of Health employees.


  1. Describe the Core Competencies for Public Health Professionals and identify the 8 domains.
  2. Learn why competencies are important in public health and how they are used.
  3. Find out how public health employees use Core Competency tools.
  4. Recognize the benefits of Core Competency training.
  5. Understand how public health employees can use Core Competencies in various stages of their careers.
  6. Find out how Florida and other states use Core Competencies in public health.

(Click on the image below to view for full screen.)

Core Competency Flyer

For more information, please contact Desiree Liburd, Assistant Program Director in Center for Leadership in Public Health Practice at 813-974-9070 or dliburd@health.usf.edu.

A Public Health Refresher Course

It is too easy to overlook a fundamental public health course, like “Principles of Public Health” when you have acquired the knowledge or surpassed the basics due to field experiences and other educational trainings.

Until now…

Photo Credit: U.S. FDA

Photo Credit: U.S. FDA

University of California, Irvine and Coursera have partnered to offer one of the largest online courses in public health. The course is absolutely FREE and has over 15,000 students enrolled from all over the world. This 5-week course (which began 1/28/2013) discusses everything from the definition of public health to the future of the industry.

So, why take the course?

  1. Everything is optional. You decide your time-commitment. One hour a week? Or 6 hours per week? Your choice. There is no attendance. Choose to watch a few lectures or passively follow discussion boards. Or, complete all the assignments, actively participate in the discussion threads and obtain the certificate of completion.
  2. Keep your finger on the industry pulse. You may have passed your Public Health 101 class in college, but that’s only ONE class, from ONE teacher, at ONE school, during ONE point in world’s history. Foundational principles may not have changed significantly, but their application may have changed dramatically. It may be worth enrolling just to see what industry topics are being discussed.
  3. Gain global perspective. Imagine engaging with students from all over the world and having conversations related to your field about topics that are relevant to you. The different student backgrounds and participant experiences may help you re-define or re-frame your own perspectives about public health … and possibly even enhance your career.
  4. Academic reality check. Professionals often wonder if academia aligns with the needs of their industry. Are they adequately preparing people to enter the field of public health or are topics out-dated or irrelevant? Well, here is your chance to find out. It’s also your chance to voice your opinion.
  5. Networking opportunities. You never know when you’ll find a group of peers or colleagues that could lead to future partnerships or potential collaborations. The mean age of a participant in these massive online courses is 35 years old. Many are just like you – working professionals who value life-long learning. They are smart, perceptive, and not always coming from a public health-related field (which can also broaden your perspective). Let’s just say, these may not be the typical 20-something college students from a freshman public health class.

The course is FREE and still open for enrollment (as of this posting). Check it out or register here: https://www.coursera.org/course/publichealth

NOTE to OMP PARTICIPANTS: This course counts towards your professional development hours. However, you must successfully pass and receive the completion certificate before posting your hours in your activity tracking log.

National Mentoring Month: Jonathan’s Mentorship

Jonathan Meadows, MPH, CPH, CPhT also began in our FPHTC Online Mentor Program as a mentee during spring of 2012. “My mentor has been totally accommodating and flexible in making sure that we meet regularly as possible and foster a beneficial relationship,” says Meadows. He shares his professional dreams during his meetings and  values the ways his mentor helps him create action plans towards making those goals achievable.

Biz Discussion.jpgNetworking is also a great benefit to mentorships since they provide introductions with the right professional contacts. Mentoring is one way to elevate talent and link people with others who can collaborate with each other. “My mentor has been instrumental in building my network throughout the public health community,” says Meadows, who is already building lasting relationships in the field and enjoying the exchange of ideas and views they bring. “Mentorships are important in public health is because it provides an anchor to a more established professional as new professionals take root in the organization,” he says.

As a biological scientist in environmental health, epidemiology, and preparedness division of the Pinellas County Health Department in Florida, Meadows continues to develop his post-degree epidemiology experiences. Although his current contract is temporary, his desire to learn and grow is not. He continues to build his skills in the areas related to disease outbreak, infectious diseases, health planning, and evaluation of services. “[My mentor] has demonstrated resilience in the workplace that I am inspired to replicate in my own career,” Meadows says.

We dedicate this post to Jonathan’s mentor!