Online Program

Graduation as a Public Health Priority: Unpacking the Social Dimensions of Success

Monday, November 4, 2013: 10:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
The expanse of dropout as a societal ill is well documented. Dropouts face economic obsolescence as adults, strain the GDP, and have great difficulty assisting in the educational success of their own children. Significant now, is research that makes the case for the circular link between education and health. As indicated in Healthy People 2020 (Department of Health and Human Services), graduation from high school is the leading predictor of adult health, even when other factors such as race and income are taken into account. Though having a college degree is additive, completing high school in four years increases the likelihood of practicing health promoting behaviors, experiencing better health, living longer, and reducing the incidence of mortality and sickness in offspring. By contrast, students who drop out of high school are more likely to die at younger ages as adults from chronic conditions such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, infection, lung disease, and diabetes, than their peers who graduated. Furthermore, dropouts tend not to have health insurance and have limited access to health care. And the children of mothers who drop out are twice as likely to die before age one and six times as likely to suffer from poor health all their lives, if they survive. These outcomes of dropout form the basis for why high school graduation has become a public health priority.
Session Objectives: Identify the socially related conditions that impact health and high school graduation. Explain how high school graduation can effectuate health equity and eliminate health disparities. Describe the key educationally relevant health disparities that contribute to dropout. Explain how high school graduation can effectuate health equity and eliminate health disparities.
Terri Wright, PhD, MPH


See individual abstracts for presenting author's disclosure statement and author's information.

Organized by: APHA
Endorsed by: Medical Care, Community Health Planning and Policy Development

See more of: APHA