Oakwood University hopes new Master’s program will encourage healthy living

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - Oakwood University will soon offer a Master's of Public Health degree.

"The focus of the program on nutrition and wellness, is to show how diet can play a major role in promoting health," said John Anderson, Associate Provost for Graduate Education and E-Learning.

The university said they could not have implemented this program at a more crucial time.

"We think this one is relevant for right now, because here in the South as you probably know, individuals are faced with a lot of health challenges that can be attributed to their diet," explained Anderson. "We feel like now is the time that we can reach out and provide some assistance."

University officials said this program is just another initiative towards building a stronger, healthier community.

The university has been harvesting fresh produce on a campus farm for a while now, and they share it with the community.

Nearly 70 percent of North Alabamians facing hunger have hypertension. Nearly 40 percent of those facing hunger in our area have diabetes according to the Food Bank of North Alabama.

"It [the program] definitely connects with the farm, it connects with the educational programs that we have for our students, and our staff members promoting health. The university has additional plans for reaching out to the community in the future, with providing health services," said Anderson.

Students will be required to intern with food service programs as part of their curriculum - they could earn this degree in 12 to 18 months.

Students will be required to intern with food service programs as part of their curriculum. They could earn this Master's degree in 12 to 18 months.

"We're hoping to enroll our first class in the fall, and right now people are emailing, calling in and expressing interest in the program," explained Anderson.

This degree can be earned completely online, so officials hope it will have a nationwide impact.

To learn more visit Oakwood's graduate enrollment site. You can also contact the office of admission by phone or email.

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