Message from Karen Edwards, Director

    Greetings from Seattle and the Institute for Public Health Genetics (IPHG) at the University of Washington! As the Director of the IPHG, I look forward to this upcoming academic year, which brings many new exciting opportunities for our program. 

As many of you know, the UW School of Public Health is in the process of implementing a strategic plan that will chart the course for the School over the next five years.  We are proud that the accomplishments of the IPHG were recognized in this plan, and more importantly, that Genomics and Public Health has been identified as one of five key areas for growth.  As a first step in implementing this plan, the IPHG has relocated to new space located on the main UW campus. This new, larger space provides offices for IPHG faculty, staff, and a lounge and study area for our students. Our location in Raitt Hall, located centrally on the quad, highlights the interdisciplinary nature of our program and will continue to facilitate new partnerships across campus.  

During this past year we offered our first undergraduate course entitled “Public Health Genomics: Implications for the modern world (PHG300)”  that is team taught by our multidisciplinary faculty.  The course was a success and we will now be offering our second undergraduate course titled Public Health Genomics: Introduction to Genetic Epidemiology (PHG301) this winter quarter 2013.  We plan to add additional undergraduate offerings in the future, even as we continue to nurture and sustain our vibrant Masters, PhD, and Certificate Programs.  

This year we are also celebrating the launch of a new interdisciplinary IPHG research agenda thanks to a generous gift from Dr. Gilbert Omenn and Martha Darling (Public Health Genetics Research Project Fund). The IPHG will focus broadly on research to evaluate and identify interactions between genetic and environmental factors and at the same time anticipating and addressing the ethical, legal and social issues that are required to translate research findings into actionable steps whose impact on population health can be evaluated. 

Finally, we are again planning a special event for International DNA Day that will be held in April 2013 with another generous gift and sponsorship by a private donor. Check back for more details. This is an exciting time at the IPHG and I believe that you will be impressed by the depth and breadth of our training, research and other activities. The faculty, staff, students and alumni of our program are committed to continuing excellence and leadership in the field of public health genetics. We invite you to take a closer look at our innovative multidisciplinary program and to consider joining us as we launch the next phase of our program.  Please browse our website or contact us  to learn more about the Institute for Public Health Genetics and the degree programs we offer.