By Makenzie Plusnick—
Tarleton is celebrating National Public Health Week beginning on Monday, April 1. Events put on by Tarleton’s Public Health program will be happening around campus throughout the week, including Mental Health First Aid training, a Farmer’s Market and presentations over popular public health topics.
The Public Health program has been on campus for five years, but is rapidly growing. The program focuses on health before there is a problem. It was started by Dr. Subi Gandhi, who also directs the program.
“Clinical sciences focus on treatment. People already have the disease and they focus on how to treat the disease and manage the disease, but public health professionals try to prevent the disease in the first place,” Gandhi said.
Gandhi says that public health is lacking in Stephenville.
“Our goal is to promote health and wellbeing, so we are placed here, the program is placed in Stephenville, and what we realized is rural health is actually ignored in the whole prevention efforts,” she said. “We don’t have a public health department close to the area, so this area is kind of forgotten, so to speak in terms of interventions and other things.”
Gandhi has several hopes for the coming week.
“What public health is trying to do is two things,” Gandhi said. “First, we want to take care of our Tarleton community because we value our students, staff and faculty, so we want to promote health on campus. In addition to that, we want to promote health in the surrounding communities.”
The week begins on Monday, April 1stwith the first session of Mental Health First Aid, a four-day training course on how to help those with developing or present mental health problems. On Monday, the Farmer’s Market will be in front of the Dining Hall and local vendors will sell a variety of produce. Cooking for Health, a food fair that will have a variety of free samples and recipes, as well as live cooking demonstrations, will be on Thursday, April 4. There will also be several presentations on public health, both on April 3 and 4. For more information, visit the Tarleton Public Health Facebook page.