I am grateful to so many people who help to make this School outstanding, top-ranked, and a great community. Our faculty members continue to train some of the best students anywhere, conduct groundbreaking research that solves real problems and provide service across North Carolina and around the world. Faculty members could not do this without our talented, devoted staff. Thank you all!
Our students, without whom we would not exist: Thank you for trusting us with your education and for your passion, intelligence and wholehearted engagement. You are fabulous!
Our staff: Thank you for giving your best in spite of not having had scheduled pay increases in three years. We could not be the top school we are without you!
Our faculty: You are exceptional at the many jobs you do—teachers, mentors, researchers, practitioners and so much more. You too have gone without pay raises, done without teaching assistants and stepped up to do more. Thank you.
Our School’s leaders: You are fundamental to our School’s successes. I am so grateful to work with you.
Thanks to each of you who said “yes” when we asked you to serve on one more committee. We needed you.
Our donors: Without you, there’d be so much we could not do, and many students who might not be here. Thank you for giving generously to the School. You are more important to us than ever before.
Our Public Health Foundation Board and School of Public Health Advisory Council: Your wisdom makes us better! Thank you for your advice, counsel and generosity.
Our alumni: You make us proud. Hardly a week goes by that we do not hear great stories about what you are doing to change the world for the better. Curt Rhodes, PhD (PALP), who received Social Entrepreneur of the Year Award from the Schwab Foundation recently, is a great example.
UNC leaders: You have stood by us even as the economy has challenged our resources. Thank you.
Citizens of North Carolina who continue to support UNC: thank you.
And thanks especially to our friends and families: Without you, we’d be much less.
It’s been another difficult year economically, and we made stiff cuts in July. Sadly, we laid-off some employees. It was painful for them, the people who had to make and carry out those decisions and the people who remained.
It’s a year in which some among us have become ill, had injuries, lost loved ones. My thoughts are with them and their families, friends and colleagues. I have watched with awe as some in our community have faced great personal adversity and responded with what Ernest Hemingway called grace under pressure. We have great strength and resilience among us. Thankfully, most have recovered and rebounded. Your children have graduated, gotten engaged and had their own children. Congratulations!
Thank you all for your many contributions to the community we call the Gillings School of Global Public Health. Our people and impact reverberate across North Carolina and around the world. Best wishes for happy, healthy holidays.
With gratitude, Barbara