GW leaders tackled some of nation’s most daunting issues – public health and education – at a global conference last week.
Dean Lynn Goldman joined William Dietz, newly hired director of GW’s Sumner M. Redstone Global Center for Prevention and Wellness, and University President Steven Knapp in Los Angeles for the conference. More than 3,000 panelists discussed how to prevent illness to lower the costs of health care.
Goldman said researchers must do more to stop resistance to antibiotics around the world. She said preventing obesity, one of the school’s emerging research topics, also needs to be a focus across the country.
“This is an emerging public health crisis, with the first generation of children in a century who will be less healthy than we are if we don’t do something about this,” she said, according to a release.
The Global Center, which will launch within the next year, will aim to bring obesity researchers from around the world to GW for conferences.
Dietz, who formerly served as a director at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, addressed a panel about ways to make businesses healthier, such as creating smoke-free campuses and providing healthy food in cafeterias and at meetings.
Knapp focused his discussions on education, and joined panels debating how to close the gap between high-income and low-income students at universities.
As GW and its peer institutions have increased efforts to recruit low-income students, Knapp said universities need to place more emphasis on how to support those students when they arrive on campus.
“We’ve tended to focus either on preparation in high school or on ways of attracting and recruiting students, but we haven’t been as focused as we should be, I think, on all the systems that need to be in place to support students once they get there,” he said.
The three attended the summit in Los Angeles less than two months after announcing an $80 million donation from the Milken Institute and Sumner M. Redstone Foundation.