The Department of Public Health Sciences will be recognized by the College of Health, Education and Human Development, Clemson University, the state of South Carolina, and the nation as a leader in public health research, teaching and service activities in fulfillment of the University’s responsibilities as a land-grant institution and its aspirations for national excellence in education and scholarship.
The mission of the Department of Public Health Sciences is the improvement of public health practice, health service delivery, and the general health status of the university community, the state of South Carolina, the nation and the international community through applied, innovative, collaborative, theoretically sound approaches to the integration of teaching, research, and service.
The Department of Public Health Sciences is the newest degree-granting unit in the College of Health, Education, and Human Development. The seeds for the department were sown in 1983, though the interest and effort of the Dean of the College of Nursing, Dr. Opal Hipps, and faculty members, Drs. Becky Campbel, Carol Schwartz, and Arlene Privette. At the time they were interested in providing health content for university students in response to the 1979 Surgeon Generals Report declaring health promotion and disease prevention as a priority to the nation.
In 1991, an application was submitted to the S.C. Commission on Higher Education for a new degree program : The Bachelor of Health Science offered through the Department of Health Sciences in the College of Nursing. The new degree program was approved in December of 1991, and the first six students were accepted into the major in Spring of 1992. In 1996, the Commission on Higher Education conducted a site visit and declared that the program's curriculum was adequate and appropriate both in depth and breadth and offered a rich opportunity in preparing students in health promotion and pre-professional areas of interest.
Dr. Cheryl Dye was hired as the first full-time faculty member in the newly established Department of Health Science, and continues in her role as a senior member of the faculty. The first students graduated from the Department of Health Science in May of 1994.
In 1998, the Department of Health Sciences was renamed as the Department of Public Health Sciences to more accurately reflect the strong public health professional training undergraduate students receive at Clemson University. From its modest beginnings, the Department of Public Health Sciences has grown to approximately 400 undergraduate majors. Planning for graduate studies programs are on-going at this time.