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Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center unveils new school in Abilene

The Julia Jones Matthews School of Population and Public Health will be the first TTUHSC school to headquarter administrative operations out of Abilene.

ABILENE, Texas — Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center reached another milestone in education as it celebrated the launch of the Julia Jones Matthews School of Population and Public Health in Abilene.

The school is the first within the university to house its administrative operations in Abilene, according to TTUHSC.

Population health is the study of the health status and health outcomes within a group of people. 

The school is named in honor of Julia Jones Matthews, who was a longtime Abilene philanthropist and Texas Tech supporter.

“This was something that was a vision of city leaders almost a decade ago. And so it's a real honor to be here today, almost 20 years later, to see the execution and the impact that the vision of these Cedar City leaders have had on our university in this community,” Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center President Lori Rice-Spearman, Ph.D. said.

The Matthews family, university leaders and volunteers took park in this groundbreaking unveiling.

Texas Tech is one of only nine systems in the United States with a veterinary school, medical school, law school and pharmacy school, that are all a complement of a single institution. 

Executive Vice President for Rural and Community Health Dr. Billy U. Philips says this program is the start of a bright future for the next generation of healthcare workers in West Texas.

“We think that they will be better equipped because they have two degrees whatever their primary degree is. Then the most important one, which will change their perspective forever to public health or population health. They will inspire others to go beyond even where they are,” Philips said. 

One of the big topics students will learn about in the upcoming fall semester is the impact COVID-19 had on the United States. 

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