Welcome Back for the 2019-20 Academic Year from the Director of SPPH

September 15, 2019  

Dear SPPH Community,

Please excuse this slightly belated welcome back letter – for me and probably for many of you, the beginning of a new academic year involves many priorities that demand attention.

My first days back on campus after a break the last half of August were brightly coloured by the energy and excitement of new and returning students touring campus, signing up for services and organizations in the plaza in front of the AMS Nest, and indeed filling the Nest itself. I enjoyed meeting many of our new students at the School’s orientation gathering on September 3rd, and I look forward to meeting many more as the academic year progresses. It is my first September at UBC and a great reminder of the joys of working in the academy.

Last academic year, SPPH started the wheels turning on some interesting new initiatives, and this year we will see some of them producing results while others pick up steam. In the fall you will hear from our own community and from interesting visitors in new formats. We are recruiting new faculty, creating new spaces for students to enjoy, and are continuing to develop and disseminate innovations in research, education, and public health action. As I get to know SPPH, I am deeply impressed by the many positive things taking place and greatly admire the wonderful students, staff, and faculty who are making them happen.

If we haven’t met yet, please feel free to catch my eye and introduce yourself. It is my joy and privilege to get to know you. If we have met, stop by my office for a chat – my door is often open.

So, welcome back and may we all see many of our hopes and dreams realized in the coming months.


Peter Berman

Professor and Director

School of Population and Public Health

The University of British Columbia.