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SU invests in health research, outreach — Center for Health and Behavior designated as University-wide center
SU invests in health research, outreach — Center for Health and Behavior designated as University-wide centerOctober 17, 2007Jaime Winne Alvarezjlwinne@syr.edu
As part of its Scholarship in Action vision, Syracuse University will invest in an interdisciplinary cluster in the area of health and behavior. Chancellor and President Nancy Cantor and Vice Chancellor and Provost Eric F. Spina recognize that the field is a rich, intellectual discipline with the opportunity to engage with partner institutions, corporations and the local Syracuse community. As part of the University’s investment in this area, SU’s Center for Health and Behavior (CHB) has been designated a University-wide center.
Created in 1999 with support from The College of Arts and Sciences and housed in the Department of Psychology, the CHB fosters and supports research programs devoted to the relationship between human behavior and health outcomes. With investment from the department and the college, CHB has attracted a dynamic and talented group of faculty and staff members who have built a strong portfolio addressing many aspects of health and behavior. External support for the center has grown rapidly and now exceeds $5 million annually.
Under the coordination of Ben Ware, vice president for research and dean of the Graduate School, the CHB will expand its mission and scope by initiating more multidisciplinary research and training programs, creating further opportunities for student involvement, exploring additional funding sources, seeking to establish a community outreach office, and creating a seed-funding mechanism to encourage cross-college collaborations and stimulate new proposals. Center director Michael Carey will report to Ware while continuing to serve as Dean’s Professor of the Sciences in the Department of Psychology. Ware will coordinate with Department of Psychology Chair Barbara Fiese to assure that CHB remains a vital asset to the department and that it is beneficial for current members of the center as well as new collaborators from other units.
“This designation illustrates how the collective efforts of outstanding faculty members can serve the larger community. I am eager to work with the Vice Chancellor’s Office and Ben Ware to create a truly collaborative center that assuredly will benefit the health and well-being of not only the Syracuse community but potentially people around the world,” says Fiese.
“By identifying the Center for Health and Behavior as a campus-wide center, we’re taking a strong University asset and broadening its scope and mission for greater impact in the health and behavior field,” says Spina. “As Syracuse University further invests itself in this interdisciplinary cluster, we will commit more resources to it and encourage scholars from other fields to engage themselves in research related to health and behavior. The leadership of our psychology colleagues will create more opportunities for the University as a whole, and this structure will ensure that they also receive direct benefits. I am confident that the new leadership structure will be effective at encouraging collaboration and engagement and increasing resources.”
“Our new designation conveys the goal of partnering with colleagues from across campus and beyond,” says Carey. “This increased collaboration and outreach will create more opportunities for interdisciplinary research, improve student education, and enhance services to our community and profession. We hope to strengthen SU’s intellectual signature in health and behavior, and enhance collaboration across the spectrum of disciplines that study health and behavior.”
“With the identification of health and behavior as a key campus-wide initiative, other schools, colleges and interdisciplinary centers at Syracuse University, in addition to the Center for Health and Behavior, have the potential to engage and collaborate as we move forward,” says Ware.
The Center for Health and Behavior facilitates and encourages research on the behavioral and psychosocial aspects of health, including topics such as the health effects of aging, alcohol use, arthritis, asthma, diabetes, heart disease, HIV, smoking and stress. Scientists in the center often develop and evaluate programs to promote health in children, adolescents, college students, adults and families. Research — in laboratories, hospitals, schools and community-based agencies and in collaboration with colleagues in the United States and abroad — is supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health and public and private sponsors. For more information, visit http://www.chb.syr.edu.