Strategies to Advance Health Equity: State and Local Health Departments’ Role in Building Pathways to Higher Education
Group of Diverse Graduates

Course Objective

  • Explain the rationale for expanding public health practice to promote health and equity by supporting access to high-quality, affordable education
  • Summarize evidence documenting how high school and college completion can improve health
  • Describe structural, social, political, and economic barriers to high school and college completion
  • Identify three specific strategies designed to support high school completion, transition to higher education, and college completion to advance health equity
  • Explain how LHDs can leverage “upstream” strategies to support these initiatives, including partnering with other agencies, social movements and community organizations

Date: September 24, 2018

Nicholas Freudenberg
Distinguished Professor of Public Health
City University of New York School of Public Health

Emily Frazosa
Senior Researcher
City University of New York School of Public Health

The relationship between health and education is well documented. However, not everyone in the United States has the same access to high-quality education, which creates wide disparities in high school and college graduation rates and future life success. Additionally, people with more education live longer lives and have lower rates of chronic disease and less drug use, less smoking and better birth outcomes. Advancing health equity means we must work to make sure everyone in our communities has access to equitable, high-quality, affordable educational opportunities. In this module, participants will explore specifically on how high school and college completion influence health, and what prevents students from earning a degree. While high school and college each present some challenges that are different, you’ll see that many of them overlap. Also, learners will review barriers that keep students from academic success, and the public health tools we have to break down those barriers. Lastly, learners will look at real-world examples of how schools, governments and health departments are working to help all students succeed.

Region 2 Public Health Training Center