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Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Wins ASPPH’s 2019 Harrison C. Spencer Community Service Award


The Association of Schools & Programs of Public Health (ASPPH), the leading organization representing schools and programs of public health in the U.S. and Canada, has named Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health the recipient of the 2019 Harrison C. Spencer Award for Outstanding Community Service.

The award, named in honor of the late former president and CEO of ASPPH, is presented each year to an ASPPH-member school or program with a longstanding, major institutional commitment to engage with their community to improve public health.

The nexus of the Bloomberg School’s local community outreach is SOURCE, a community engagement and service-learning center that engages the Johns Hopkins health professional schools and Baltimore communities in partnerships that promote health and social justice.

“This award reflects the special commitment of the Bloomberg School of Public Health to our city of Baltimore,” says Dean Ellen J. MacKenzie, PhD, ScM. “This commitment is made real by our departments, centers, offices and SOURCE, an extraordinary organization that creates meaningful and lasting collaborations with local organizations and residents. I am especially honored because the award honors the legacy of Dr. Harrison Spencer and his dedication to community engagement and health outcomes.”

Founded in 2005, SOURCE engages students, faculty and staff from the Bloomberg School of Public Health, the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing and School of Medicine to work with community partners across the city of Baltimore. Since its founding, SOURCE has collaborated with over 100 Baltimore-area nonprofits and organizations.

“It is a true honor to be recognized for our community engagement activities with Baltimore organizations,” says Mindi B. Levin, MS, CHES, founder and director of SOURCE. “We’ve worked diligently to develop authentic, mutually beneficial partnerships that respond to community-identified needs.” 

During their site visit earlier this month, ASPPH visitors met with several SOURCE community partners at the Commodore John Rodgers Elementary/Middle School. The ASPPH visitors learned about public sector collaborations between the Bloomberg School and the Baltimore City Health Department, Fire Department and Police Department. They also heard from faculty, students and community leaders who work together on service-learning courses and public health practice projects.

“Our community collaborations have contributed to improvements in infant mortality, reductions in overdose, assistance to individuals experiencing homelessness, support for teachers and schoolchildren, and many other steps forward for health in Baltimore,” says Joshua M. Sharfstein, MD, vice dean for Public Health Practice and Community Engagement. “We are looking forward to growing these collaborations to accomplish even more together in the future.”

Johns Hopkins will be recognized at the ASPPH Awards Luncheon on Thursday, March 21, during the ASPPH Annual Meeting.

Watch a video about JHSPH SOURCE here

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