CORVALLIS - An innovative degree program to provide a master's degree in public health to Oregon students has received accreditation from the Council on Education for Public Health.

It is believed to be the first time that a health program run by a consortium of universities - with faculty directors from all of the institutions making key decisions - has received accreditation by the council.

The Oregon Master of Public Health degree is a collaborative effort between Oregon State University, Oregon Health Sciences University, and Portland State University.

"While there are a few other multi-institutional master of public health programs in the U.S. - in Kansas and New Jersey, for example, - ours is the first and only program intentionally structured as a joint governance model," said Leonard Friedman, an associate professor of public health at Oregon State.

"Faculty from all three universities sit as a coordinating council with authority to approve program tracks, modify curriculum, and determine the structure and direction of the degree," he added. "And it works."

Friedman said there are approximately 65 students enrolled in the program at OSU, 75 at OHSU, and 80 at PSU.

The accreditation is for three years.

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Leonard Friedman, 541-737-2323