Two CDC Professionals to Teach New Online Course on Health and Emergency Management at Millersville University

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Millersville University is offering an innovative and timely course to help those in the emergency management fields with critical health issues as a result of natural disasters. CDC professionals Paul Charp and Greg Zarus join the Millersville University faculty in teaching this special topics course within the Master of Science in Emergency Management.

Often times when a disaster strikes, first responders or emergency management teams act on the situation that is directly in front of them, as opposed to having a plan ready to implement.

The Millersville University Center for Disaster Research and Education announces a new course on health and emergency management as part of its Master of Science in Emergency Management. The new course will be taught completely online by CDC physicist Dr. Paul Charp and CDC supervisory scientist Mr. Greg Zarus. The course begins August 29th. Interested professionals can take this one course as a standalone or as part of the full master’s degree.

The course will focus on better understanding health priorities associated with a chemical or radiological incident; differentiating between chemical weapons events versus other chemical or radiological events; defining rate limiting factors; differentiating and calculating risks and hazards; applying principles of preparedness, response, recovery and mitigation; and identifying and determining roles and responsibilities around these principles and the potential situation.

The course was developed to help emergency managers or leaders to better manage, minimize or prevent health disasters as a result of a natural disaster. “Often times when a disaster strikes, first responders or emergency management teams act on the situation that is directly in front of them, as opposed to having a plan ready to implement. Systems and processes need to be put in place that are proactive regarding the assessment of hazardous materials, the response to the condition of the materials and communications to management teams. These are all critical issues taught in the Millersville program and critical to preserving life and restoring a community,” said Dr. Paul Charp, the senior health physicist at the CDC Division of Health Assessment and Consultation and one of the faculty members teaching the course at Millersville University.    

“We are very fortunate to have Paul Charp and Greg Zarus teaching this course. They are two exceptional practitioners, scientists and teachers in the field,” said Sepi Yalda, Program Director for the Master of Science in Emergency Management at Millersville University.    

Dr. Charp is senior health physicist in the CDC Division of Health Assessment and Consultation. He's responsible for evaluating radioactive materials in the environment and their effects on public health. In addition, he serves on the National Advisory Team for Environment, Food, and Health, and he teaches nuclear engineering at Georgia Tech. More recently, he was deployed to the CDC's Emergency Operations Center (EOC) to assist with the Japanese nuclear incident at Fukushima.

Mr. Greg Zarus is a supervisory scientist at the CDC and manager of the Public Health Assessment Program. After getting an MS in Atmospheric Science and Geophysics at Texas Tech, he went on to do graduate work in Environmental Engineering at Rutgers. He led the EPA's Air Quality Modeling Team before moving over to the CDC. At the CDC, his work focuses on air pollution and managing investigations of various exposures. He also leads a multidisciplinary team that works to provide rapid consultations on environmental exposures, and he is the mayor of Pine Lake, a small town in Georgia.

About the Millersville University Center for Disaster Research and Education

Millersville University Center for Disaster Research and Education was created in 2003 and provides multi-discipline education, research and internship opportunities; contributes to the next generation of disaster researchers and managers; conducts research on behavioral or organizational responses to disasters and terrorism; and disseminates research in the field that is useful to the general public, mass media personnel, and emergency management personnel, as well as researchers. The Master of Science in Emergency Management program began accepting students and working professionals in 2007.

For more information, visit http://www.millersville.edu/cdre or call Program Director Dr. Sepi Yalda at syalda(at)millersville(dot)edu or 717-872-3293.

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