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What is Health and Human Development?

Diverse fields of study that share one
common goal: enriching the lives of others.

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Environmental Health Sciences
Strategic hiring initiative in environmental health sciences

Penn State’s College of Health and Human Development (HHD) is launching a strategic hiring initiative in the environmental health sciences that will bring six tenure line faculty in this area to our college over the next several years. The short-term goal is to build a consolidated, critical mass of expertise in environmental health sciences (defined as the prevention of injury and illness and promotion of well-being through the identification and mitigation of adverse environmental exposures) which can be mobilized to study the most pressing issues facing society. Long-term goals are to catalyze additional research in environmental health sciences addressing critical population health challenges, including both anthropogenic and climate change driven; grow educational offerings and student experiences in this area; and further burnish Penn State’s reputation as a world leader in environmental impact.

We seek bench-to-population science expertise that embraces coupled human-natural systems and transdisciplinary approaches addressing critical environmental health challenges. We aim to catalyze research and training around the most pressing environmental health issues, including extreme climatic events and climate change, heat stress, water and food insecurity, drought, flooding, air pollution, and anthropogenically-derived issues including emerging contaminants of concern to human health, and environmental injustice. Basing these faculty in the College of Health and Human Development will build upon our community of scholars collocated with existing expertise in health behavior, social science, human development, and public health — thereby facilitating innovative work where the coupled human-natural systems intersect with individual and social health contexts.

The initiative is being supported by several of Penn State’s interdisciplinary institutes, including the Institute of Computational and Data Sciences (ICDS) and the Social Sciences Research Institute (SSRI). It engages with key research priorities of the Institutes of Energy and the Environment (IEE) under their Health and Environment theme area. IEE has a cross-university mission and can connect new faculty to other environmental scientists and forecasters as well as College of Medicine faculty who can serve as key collaborators.

Penn State University has an impressive array of research resources relevant to supporting research in environmental health sciences.

Current Open Positions


Open Rank Faculty Position in Environmental Health Sciences - Social Scientist

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Tenure-Track Assistant Professor in Environmental Health Sciences - Big Data

Why Penn State?

Penn State is a land-grant Research I university and a National Science Foundation top-25 ranked environmental sciences research institution. Consequently, there are tremendous existing environmental sciences resources and expertise to be leveraged to build innovative research programs related to human health. HHD is a research-intensive college, with the third highest extramurally supported expenditures at the University, and houses significant expertise in behavioral, social, and biological health determinants to compliment and synergize with a number of environmental health science research programs.

Our culture

The College of Health and Human Development embraces individual uniqueness, fosters a culture of inclusion that supports both broad and specific diversity initiatives, leverages the educational and institutional benefits of diversity, and engages all individuals to help them thrive. We value inclusion as a core strength and an essential element of our public service mission. In the College of Health and Human Development, enriching the lives of others is our mission. We strongly encourage applications from women, racial and ethnic minorities, and other individuals who are under-represented in the profession, across color, creed, race, ethnic and national origin, physical ability, gender and sexual identity, or any other legally protected basis.


Inquiries about the position may be directed to the search committee chair:

Asher Rosinger, Ph.D., MPH
Associate Professor of Biobehavioral Health and Anthropology
Environmental Health Sciences Program Area Leader