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June 29, 2011 - Image 2

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Publication:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 2011-06-29

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Wednesday, June 29, 2011
The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

'U' to offer master's in Health Informatics

Schools of
Information and
Public Health
launch new degree
By GIACOMO BOLOGNA
Daily StaffReporter
Amid rising healthcare costs
and an industry constantly
afflicted by turmoil, the Univer-
sity is maintaining its position as
a frontrunner in the health field
with the official creation of a new
master's program in Health Infor-
matics, following over three years
of planning.
Meghan Genovese, Health
Informatics program manager,
said the University will join a
small group of schools around
the nation that offer this type of
degree program, which will be
run by both the School of Infor-
mation and the School of Public
Health.
Additionally a graduate cer-
tificate program will be available
for the Winter 2012 term and the
52-credit Master's Program for

the Winter 2013 term, she said.
Charles Friedman is stepping
down from his position as chief
scientific officer of the Office
of the National Coordinator for
Health Information Technology
to head the new program.
Friedman first came to the
University four years ago to speak
about the benefits of developing a
Health Informatics program, and
has worked throughout most of
his professional career to promote
health IT nationally, according to
the ONC website. In the academic
world, Friedman has taught and
held numerous titles at both the
University of Pittsburgh and the
University of North Carolina
In the health informatics
field, Friedman said "the breadth
of potential careers is really quite
impressive" and that the Health
Information Technologies Indus-
try is "rapidly expanding."
Jeffrey MacKie-Mason, dean
of the School of Information, said
in addition to being one of the few
in the country, the new program is
"really quite novel."
"Most (Health Informatics
programs) are focused on clinical
health records," MacKie-Mason

said."We're focusing first and
foremost on consumer health, on
individuals taking care of them-
selves and dealing with their
health conditions outside of the
hospital ... and public health."
Martin Philbert, dean of the
School of Public Health, called
the program "a fabulous, exciting,
and unique partnership between
the School of Information and the
School of Public Health."
"I am delighted that Chuck
Friedman will be joining our
health management college facul-
ty," Philbert said. "He's extraordi-
narily well thought of ... he brings
us immediate national and inter-
national credibility and visibility."
Philbert said that upon com-
pleting the program - which
also includes an internship fea-
ture - graduates will likely find
success in attaining jobs, citing
a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
study that predicted an 18-per-
cent growth for employment in
the field of Health Informatics.
Specifically, Friedman listed
public health agencies in local,
state and national government
and consulting firms within the
expanding health informatics

field as potential job sites for grad-
uates of the program.
In addition to the program,
graduates will also be the bene-
factors of the reputations of the
School of Information and the
School of Public Health according
to MacKie-Mason, who identified
both schools as falling within the
top three of their respective fields
nationally.
Genovese said that with the
degree, students could potentially
become involved with projects
like personal health management,
where they would develop pro-
grams that track the progress of a
patient's diet and exercise online.
Friedman echoed Genovese's
sentiments, saying that students
will be able to embark on projects
that will help them develop skills
and "build technological tools"
that will help them become prac-
titioners or assist at agencies in
the health care field.
As of yet, there are no spe-
cific numbers in regards to the
expected number of students in
the program, though Friedman
said he does not expect the grow-
ing industry to disappear anytime
soon.

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Complex to be built on East Washington Street
Approved plan dormitories have not kept up with ident of The Dinerstein Companies about business for Tower Plaza
the increasing demands of the which owns Sterling 411 Lofts, Condominium, listing proximity
will offer students growing student population and wrote in an e-mail interview the to campus, soundproof rooms an
that even with renovations and he thinks The Varsity will filla dif- high security as amenities stu
alternative housing additional dormitories, a majority ferent niche than his complex that dents will continue to find attrac
forfall 2013 of the school's dorms are outdated. offers various apartment styles. tive in the housing search, adding
or a "We thought that the student He also wrote that although that they generally rent out all the

:a
:y
d
z-
tg
ke

Haley Goldberg
copydesk@michigandaily.com

Copy chief

Sarah Squire sbDevelopment Manager
squire@michigandaily.com

By YOUNJOO SANG
Daily StaffReporter
Ann Arbor City Council
recently approved the proposal
for construction of a new 13-story,
173-unit high-rise apartment on
East Washington Street called The
Varsity - a project expected to
compete with local apartments like
Sterling 411 Lofts and Tower Plaza
Condominium.
Donnie Gross, president of
Potomac Holdings - the company
in charge of buildingthe new com-
plex - said their goal is to break
ground in early 2012 and have the
apartmentsavailable to studentsby
fall 2013 in an effort to help house a
growing demographic of students.
Gross said he feels University

housing market in Ann Arbor was
underserved," Gross said. "But the
maintwo reasons for bringing (The
Varsity) to Ann Arbor is the loca-
tion and the socioeconomic make-
up of students."
The Varsity will include fea-
tures like amenity spaces, fitness
centers and business offices, and
each apartment will also have its
own washer and dryer, Gross said.
He added that housing options
will include one-bedroom, two-
bedroom and four-bedroom spaces
with a corresponding number of
bathrooms to ensure that each stu-
dent will have a private bathroom
of their own.
"Our plan is to bring (a type of
apartment) that is not currently in
Ann Arbor," he said.
Mark Foraker, senior vice pres-

leasing for this year was slower
than the last, he still anticipates
filling all his rooms for the upcom-
ing semester.
"The Varsity's additional
apartments will likely put further
downward pressure on rents in the
market as a whole and particularly
those now targeted at the highest
rents," Foraker wrote. "The well
run, professionally managed proj-
ects will probably be fine, but it will
be very competitive in the next few
years."
Brian Tomsic, associate broker
for University Realty Associates in
Tower Plaza Condominium, said
he had not heard of the recentplans
for The Varsity but is concerned
about how the Ann Arbor housing
market will be impacted.
He said he feels confident

rooms Tower Plaza offers.
He added that while the new
development may pose as a threat
to him and the other real estate
companies on campus, it may hurt
the smaller landlords in town at an
even greater degree.
Joon-Young Chung, a Ross
School of Business graduate, said
hechosetoliveinhiscurrentapart-
ment because of its location, cost
and space, adding that he tried to
avoid high-rise apartments around
campus because of the price.
Chungsaid he thinks thereason
high-rise apartments like The Var-
sity do well in Ann Arbor is because
students value high quality living,
though this isn't a priority for him.
"Being in college, luxury (in
housing) is not something I need
more than necessity," he said.

BUSINESS STAFF
Ashley Karadsheh
Alexis Newton
MeghanRooney
Connor Byrd
Quy Vo

SlesaManager
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