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Creating a Solid Foundation With Our New Mission and Core Values

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April 2024 Dean’s Note 

Creating a Solid Foundation With Our New Mission and Core Values  

Dear ColoradoSPH Community, 

Last month, I unveiled the new vision statement for the Colorado School of Public Health-- Public Health Elevated: Rising Together for a Healthier Future for All.  This statement encapsulates our identity as a community: a collective of dedicated individuals who are truly “leveling up” the science of and evidence base for public health and working in partnership with our diverse constituents locally in the Rocky Mountain region and globally.

Our school has continued to explore and define who we are and our desired perception from the outside world. Following the formulation of a new vision statement, we crafted a fresh mission and a set of core values that reflect our evolving position in the public health landscape. These foundational elements —vision, mission, and values—are revisited every 15 to 20 years in an organization’s lifecycle, and we find ourselves at this pivotal point.  

While our vision statement provides insight into our aspirations, our mission statement communicates our purpose. Our new mission statement comprises four key components: 

  • Public Health Education Redefined 
    As the premier school for public health leaders and workforce, we create a dynamic and engaging educational experience that prepares students to partner with a diverse array of communities and populations.
  • Pursue and Champion Health Equity  

We are resilient in our pursuit of health equity, with a focus on elevating equity, diversity, inclusivity, and access as core pillars of our mission. We strive to ensure that every individual can achieve optimal health. 

  • Centered in Science, Proven in Practice  

Our signature approach merges scientific research with practical application. By grounding our work in evidence-based methodologies, we translate academic insights into tangible health improvements. 

  • Connected to Community, Building Partnerships for a Healthier Future
    Strong community connections and partnerships are at the heart of our mission. We build networks of support that lay the foundation for thriving, healthier communities in the local tri-campus, state, national, and global communities. 

Our new mission statement will inspire and unite our school for another 15 to 20 years. Next, our newly formulated core values serve as guiding principles for how we work and engage in decision-making. These core values reflect our “best selves” and shape our actions within our community and how we present to the outside world. These core values help us prioritize, expend our resources, and invest in the future. Below, I describe each of the core values that our community embraces.  

ColoradoSPH Values: 

Our most significant advancements in public health are achieved by working together. Leveraging the power of collaboration and teamwork, we bring together diverse minds and disciplines to address complex public health challenges.  
We are committed to eradicating systems that create health inequities. Our actions are fueled by this commitment and our dedication reflects our deepest values in action, embodying the very core of our public health mission. 
We embody the “ART” of public health: Authentic in our intentions; Reliable in our commitments; and Trustworthy in our conduct. We maintain the highest ethical standards in our research, teaching, and community engagement.  

We approach each other and those we serve with genuine kindness, understanding, mutual respect, compassion, and deep human connection. We cultivate an environment where empathy and care are the norms, and every individual and community feels seen, heard, and valued. 
Spirit of Possibility  
We celebrate a possibility-focused mindset, where curiosity, innovative thinking, and courage are nurtured to drive continuous learning and growth in public health. It's an exciting journey where taking risks is embraced as a pathway to discovery and improvement.  

Action & Impact 
We are driven by a determination to turn innovative ideas into purposeful actions that lead to significant, positive changes in public health. 'Action & Impact' embodies our pledge to create a significant positive difference, one purposeful step at a time. 

Examples of how we embrace these core values are evident throughout our school. Each Center reflects collaborative efforts that have led to groundbreaking research and public health practice initiatives. Similarly, our dedication to equity is evident in initiatives to increase diversity in the public health workforce and address inequities in health care access and outcomes among marginalized communities.  

Our trustworthiness is exemplified in projects like the Colorado COVID-19 modeling-- where transparent and reliable data analysis guided statewide policy decisions. Our trustworthiness also shines through authentic engagement with communities like those in Pueblo, those affected by the Marshall Fire, as well as with our interactions with global partners in countries such as Mexico, Guatemala, Kenya, and China, to name a few. Our commitment to a sense of belonging is evident in the programs offered by our equity, diversity, and inclusive excellence team that fosters an environment where everyone feels valued and supported.  

Further, our spirit of possibility fuels initiatives such as those that study the impact of climate on health to tackle the planet’s most daunting challenges. And finally, our dedication to action and impact is demonstrated by our many education programs where students gain experience through working with our community partners, making tangible contributions while honing their skills as future public health leaders. In the Center for Injury and Violence Prevention, Ginny McCarthy, for example, works closely with Gang Rescue and Support Project (GRASP) in the Denver Metro area to implement hospital-based violence prevention programs.  

As a united community, we uphold these core values. We aim for a healthier, more equitable future. Together, we possess the power to enact meaningful change and elevate public health for all. With each step we take, we reaffirm our shared vision for a better future, knowing that our actions today will shape the health and well-being of future generations.  

Topics: Deans Notes