DePaul University Academic Affairs > Initiatives > Innovation Through Collaboration > Consortium of Health Initiatives at DePaul

Consortium of Health Initiatives at DePaul

In the spring 2013, a group of faculty across the university interested in health education, collaboration, and program initiatives began meeting at the invitation of Kay Thurn, Special Assistant to the Provost for Health Initiatives. Seven colleges were represented among the founding members: Wendy Epstein (Law); Elissa Foster (Communication); Craig Klugman (Science and Health); Raffaella Settimi (Computing and Digital Media); Marty Martin (Business); Andrew Gallan (Business); Donna Kiel (Education); and John Mazzeo (Liberal Arts & Social Sciences). Discussions at the initial meetings covered a wide variety of subjects and possibilities with two principle goals in mind:

  1. Facilitating collaboration around health-related education and research initiatives across the university, and
  2. Promoting DePaul University to the larger Chicago community as an institution engaged in health education broadly defined. Information, ideas, philosophies, dreams, and beliefs of this group were shared openly and honestly in an environment of collaboration.

Collaboration Within DePaul

Collaboration between the colleges of Business and Communication lead to a combined degree—the MA/MBA. Also, Computing and Digital Media collaborated with Business for a combined degree in Healthcare Informatics. With the launch of the university Cross-College Collaboration Task Force, CHID joined as the first Affinity Group—Health.

Collaboration Across Chicago

Conversations with Rush University lead to three certificate programs that will be offered by DePaul University faculty to Rush University students beginning in fall 2015. The certificates include: Health Law; Health Sector Management and Public Health. Certificate credits can be applied to the full master’s degree in each area. In addition, a faculty member from Education, Donna Kiel, presented a 6-week seminar on teaching strategies to Clerkship Directors at the Rush College of Medicine with rave reviews of her work.

The MA degree in Health Communication shares curriculum with the MS in Healthcare Administration at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science. Students have opportunities in summer and fall to take online courses in both programs counting as electives to their home institution degree.

Collaboration with Ascension Health was initiated as a natural extension of university president Father Dennis Holtschneider’s role as Chair of the Ascension Health Board. Conversations are ongoing with Computing and Digital Media regarding programs they can offer such as Predictive Analytics, with the School of Continuing and Professional Studies​ for the BA degree, and the RN-MSN program from the School of Nursing to employees with an Associate’s Degree in Nursing.


In March 2015, CHID coordinated a symposium hosted by DePaul University to honor the new Chair of the University Board, Bill Bennett. Innovations in Interprofessional Education and Practice: Pathways to Partnerships was an invitation-only event that brought together 100 innovators and opinion leaders in health care in Chicago. The conference served as both a source of information about innovation in healthcare collaboration and a site for networking and building new partnerships.

Materials from the Symposium

The IPE Keynote
Jay Bhatt, Managing Deputy Commissioner of the Chicago Department of Public Health

Glossary of IPEP Terms
Developed by CHID members

Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice
Dr. Frank Cerra

Anyone interested in collaborating with health education, broadly defined, is welcome to attend the CHID meetings.

For More Information

Contact Kay Thurn at x26129 or