Get Ready World – UNC Gillings 2014 Graduates Headed Your Way!


School of Public Health Commencement

Nicole Bates, DrPH, two-time alumna of the Gillings School and keynote speaker at the commencement ceremony, leads the global advocacy and policy strategies for polio eradication, vaccines and child health at The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Her efforts have contributed to more than $8 billion in global commitments to support vaccination programs in the world’s poorest countries.

Our May 10 Gillings commencement was solemn, raucous, fun, thoughtful, poignant and exuberant. Nearly 400 excited graduates crossed the stage, in the process signifying what they have accomplished, traversing a bridge between the past and the world ahead. We’re proud that most of them either will continue their educations or will go to work at jobs in their fields.

Nicole Bates, MPH, DrPH, our commencement speaker, is one of our own, and she was marvelous. She spoke from that intersection of heart and mind, giving advice Oprah- style in the What I know now tradition. Dr. Bates shared her own hopes and fears, and described what she’d learned in the slums of developing world countries and by the bedside of a dying family member, her impatience for change when she was a student, and how a professor’s purple pen had helped her hone her skills. Today, she is leading an effort to eradicate polio around the world, a world that will become better for all if we improve the lot of women and children.

Congratulations, Gillings students! You’re awesome, and we will miss you!


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