Topeka The leaders of the state's regents universities on Wednesday endorsed Kansas University's plans for a new School of Public Health.
The Council of Presidents' unanimous recommendation will next go to the Kansas Board of Regents during its meeting Dec. 16-17.
If the regents approve the plan, the school will start a search for a new dean and could apply as early as mid-2011 for accreditation, a process that could take three or four years.
The school will eventually require an annual budget of $2 million to $2.5 million.
KU Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little said there are some forms of funding and grants available only to a school of public health. She said the school would also “bring more visibility of public health to the state and better serve the state.”
Plans for the school at KU Medical Center have been in the works for years.
While states such as Colorado and Oklahoma both have academic institutions with schools of public health, there aren’t any in Kansas.
Such a school would prepare students for government policymaking careers; health management positions in places such as hospitals, insurance companies or bioscience firms; or for careers as researchers or policy analysts.