Health Sciences

Health Sciences Strategic Planning

The University Health Sciences Council has approved and submitted a Strategic Plan for the Health Sciences at Penn State University. The plan, finalized in December 2008, outlines the vision and mission for the health sciences at Penn State, and focuses on several overarching goals identified as priorities by the Council. The plan:

Identifies and recommends opportunities for alignment of campuses, colleges, schools, programs and institutes to create new synergies for Penn State to optimize the use of existing resources.
Recommends areas for investment of resources to advance the University in its health sciences education, research, service, and outreach missions.

Click here to download a copy of the plan.

Council Activities

Gathering Faculty Around Themes

To identify convergences among dispersed faculty, programs, and capital resources dedicated to health sciences research across the University, the Council began efforts to strengthen relationships at all levels between the College of Medicine faculty and faculty at University Park and other campuses and units engaged in Health Sciences research, teaching and outreach.

There was broad consensus that the council should develop major themes and then build the vision, mission and strategic goals around these themes. Themes have focused on areas in which Penn State has the potential to be a national leader. Initially the Council developed the following five broad Health Science themes, around which faculty were organized into focus groups to more fully determine the feasibility of these thematic areas within the context of the three missions of teaching, research and clinical care/service.

  • Rural Health
  • Global Health
  • Health Informatics and Prevention
  • Nano-Medicine
  • Environmental Health (to include biological and chemical factors, as well as natural resource impacts – air quality, access to clean water and water sanitation, and energy resources).

After identifying these initial five broad topics, the Council selected three specific topics for further engagement of faculty.

  • Infectious Disease
  • Degenerative Disease
  • Health Systems Improvement


In July of 2007 the Council reviewed a presentation that provided data that highlighted the organization of health sciences at Big 10 and other universities. In addition, the data reflected what was being done at these universities in the five broad thematic areas. Click here to view the presentation.

Existing Health Sciences Programs at Penn State

The Health Sciences 2020 Team completed a benchmarking report that documented existing Health Sciences Educational Programs at Penn State. To view the list please click here.