Yale School of Public Health Names a Scholarship After an African American Alumna

The executive master’s degree in public health scholarship at the Yale School of Public Health is being named in honor of Irene Trowell-Harris, a distinguished school alumna known for her barrier-breaking accomplishments and generous support of education. The $10,000 scholarship is available to every person who enrolls in the new online Executive M.P.H. program regardless of financial need. The program is designed for professionals interested in acquiring a strong public health education and hands-on leadership and management training.

Dr. Trowell-Harris was the first African American woman in the history of the U.S. Air National Guard to be promoted to brigadier general and subsequently, in 1998, to two-star major general. She was also the first nurse and first woman to command an Air National Guard medical clinic when she was appointed commander of the 105th U.S. Air Force Clinic in Newburgh, N.Y. A lifelong leader in health care for veterans, Dr. Trowell-Harris served two presidents as director of the Department of Veterans Affairs’ Center for Women Veterans, which monitors the welfare of more than 1.9 million women who have served in the Armed Forces. Dr. Trowell-Harris’ journey as a trailblazing African American woman in the Armed Services is captured in her most recent book Bridges: A Life Building and Crossing Them (Fortis Publishing, 2015) .

Dr. Trowell-Harris was one of 11 children who grew up on a South Carolina cotton farm that belonged to her grandfather, Jim Trowell, who had been enslaved. She was the first member of her family to attend college, using $61.25 in coins collected by her local church congregation to pay her initial tuition when she was admitted to a segregated nursing school. She went on to become a flight nurse in the New York Air National Guard and served as a medical crew director during the Vietnam War Era.

Dr. Trowell-Harris later earned a master’s degree in public health administration at Yale in 1971 and furthered her education at Columbia University where she earned a health education doctorate.

Commenting on having a scholarship named in her honor, Dr. Trowell-Harris said that “my career has been defined by leadership, collaboration and mentoring coupled with giving back and paying it forward for current and future generations. Investment in education provides student benefits for a lifetime.”

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Get the JBHE Weekly Bulletin

Receive our weekly email newsletter delivered to your inbox

Latest News

Virginia State University Receives Approval to Launch MBA Program

“I am confident this program will equip our diverse population of men and women with the knowledge, skills, and experiences necessary to thrive in today’s ever-evolving world of business," said Emmanual Omojokun, dean of the Virginia State University College of Business.

Three Black Scholars Receive Faculty Appointments

The appointments are Erica Armstrong Dunbar at Emory University in Atlanta, Kimberly Haynie at the University of Arkansas Pine Bluff, and Kevin Vandiver at Virginia Theological Seminary.

Delaware State University Aviation Program Establishes Partnership with Endeavor Air

Through a new memorandum of understanding, students in the aviation program at Delaware State University will have the opportunity to enroll in a pathway program with Endeavor Air, ultimately leading to a priority interview with the airline company upon completion of required flight hours.

American College of Physicians Honors Bruce Ovbiagele for Advancing Diversity in Healthcare

Dr. Ovbiagele's academic career has been dedicated to eliminating local and global stroke disparities, as well as mentoring medical students and researchers from underrepresented groups.

Featured Jobs