Although Professor Martin Forde’s career begun as an engineer in 1987, it has been his two decades in the field of public health that has proved most rewarding to him. Dr. Forde is a professor within the School of Graduate Studies Department of Public Health and Preventive Medicine. He also serves as director for St. George’s University’s Medical Student Research Institute and track director for the environmental and occupational health concentrations within the Master of Public Health degree program.
His latest appointment to the board of directors of the Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health (ASPPH) makes him the first representative from SGU to serve in that capacity. Professor Forde explains to SGU News what his appointment to the ASPPH board means to him, what he hopes to achieve as director, and how he plans to balance his responsibilities between SGU and ASPPH.
St. George’s University: How does it feel to be recently appointed to serve as director for ASPPH?
Professor Martin Forde: I feel honored. I have the privilege to be the voice that represents SGU’s public health program and others from non-US territories on various issues. I am also grateful that ASPPH has proactively reached out to non-US programs to ensure that these schools and programs are represented on their board.
SGU: What are you hoping to achieve during your appointment?
Professor Forde: I am hoping to introduce the way in which non-US-based public health programs operate with less resources as compared to the US counterparts, as well as related issues and concerns that impact us, and how public health solutions can be tailored to meet our unique needs.
SGU: What does your additional responsibilities within the University entail?
Professor Forde: As a professor within the Department of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, I am presently the longest serving faculty member having been with the department now for more than 20 years teaching both environmental and occupational health. Further, I am the track director for the environmental and occupational health concentrations within the Master of Public Health degree program. I’m also the director of the Medical Student Research Institute, which offers honors students in term 2 the opportunity to engage in research projects with an assigned faculty mentor.
SGU: How do you balance those responsibilities?
Professor Forde: All the above appointments are to a large degree synergistic in that they are related and complement each other. My new appointment as an at-large ASPPH board member will allow me to share my teaching and research experiences from a non-US based public health program with the leading association for public health schools and programs in the US.
SGU: What’s next Professor Forde?
Professor Forde: To continue to be of service to all in bringing the skills and knowledge I have in my personal toolbox to address and help solve the global public health challenges we currently face.