Health­care Policy Advo­cate to Receive Hon­orary Doc­torate Degree

Jessie C. Gruman, founder and pres­i­dent of the Center for the Advance­ment of Health (CFAH), an inde­pen­dent, non­par­tisan Washington-​​based policy insti­tute devoted to strength­ening people’s abil­i­ties to make good use of health care, will deliver the keynote address to more than 1,200 stu­dents at North­eastern University’s fall com­mence­ment exer­cises, to be held on Thursday, August 30 at 7:30 p.m. in Matthews Arena. Gruman will receive an hon­orary doc­torate of public ser­vice at the ceremony.

Jessie C. Gruman estab­lished the Center for the Advance­ment of Health in 1992 with funding from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foun­da­tion and the Nathan Cum­mings Foun­da­tion. The Center receives sup­port from the Annen­berg Foun­da­tion, the W.K. Kel­logg Foun­da­tion, the Atlantic Phil­an­thropies and others. Since its estab­lish­ment the Center has worked to ensure that people are able to meet the demands placed on them by health deci­sions that are increas­ingly com­plex, health pro­fes­sionals who are increas­ingly spe­cial­ized and pressed for time and health care that is increas­ingly bril­liant but chaotic.

The same set of issues and con­cerns have been the foun­da­tion of Gruman’s work in the pri­vate, public and vol­un­tary health sec­tors; she has worked at AT&T, the National Insti­tutes of Health, and the Amer­ican Cancer Society. She is also a Fellow of the Society of Behav­ioral Med­i­cine and has received the Society’s awards for dis­tin­guished ser­vice and “Lead­er­ship in Trans­la­tion of Research to Prac­tice.” She was also rec­og­nized for out­standing ser­vice from the Amer­ican Psy­cho­log­ical Asso­ci­a­tion and was hon­ored by Research!America for her lead­er­ship in advo­cacy for health research.

Gruman received her under­grad­uate degree from Vassar Col­lege where she also served as the Exec­u­tive in Res­i­dence. She has a Ph.D. in social psy­chology from Columbia Uni­ver­sity. She is a Pro­fes­sional Lec­turer in the School of Public Health at The George Wash­ington Uni­ver­sity where she also received the Pres­i­den­tial Medal. She serves on the boards of trustees of the Advi­sory Panel on Medicare Edu­ca­tion of the U.S. Depart­ment of Health and Human Ser­vices, the Public Health Insti­tute, the Sallan Foun­da­tion, and the Center for Infor­ma­tion Therapy, among others. She is also the recip­ient of an hon­orary doc­torate in public policy from Carnegie Mellon University.

Gruman is on the edi­to­rial board of The Annals of Family Med­i­cine, and is a member of the Amer­ican Psy­cho­log­ical Asso­ci­a­tion, the Asso­ci­a­tion for Phys­ical Sci­ence, and the Council on For­eign Rela­tions. She has served on the National Advi­sory Council for the Agency for Health­care Research and Quality and on the Board of Direc­tors of the National Health Council.

Gruman is the author of numerous arti­cles and essays pub­lished in schol­arly jour­nals and public media. Her book, titled After Shock: What to Do When the Doctor Gives You – or Someone You Love – a Dev­as­tating Diag­nosis (Walker Pub­lishing 2007) is about how people use sci­en­tific infor­ma­tion to make deci­sions about their healthcare.

For more infor­ma­tion on North­eastern University’s fall com­mence­ment exer­cises, please con­tact Renata Nyul at 617–373-7424 or at r.​nyul@​neu.​edu.

About North­eastern

Founded in 1898, North­eastern Uni­ver­sity is a pri­vate research uni­ver­sity located in the heart of Boston. North­eastern is a leader in inter­dis­ci­pli­nary research, urban engage­ment, and the inte­gra­tion of class­room learning with real-​​world expe­ri­ence. The university’s dis­tinc­tive coop­er­a­tive edu­ca­tion pro­gram, where stu­dents alter­nate semes­ters of full-​​time study with semes­ters of paid work in fields rel­e­vant to their pro­fes­sional inter­ests and major, is one of the largest and most inno­v­a­tive in the world. The Uni­ver­sity offers a com­pre­hen­sive range of under­grad­uate and grad­uate pro­grams leading to degrees through the doc­torate in six under­grad­uate col­leges, eight grad­uate schools, and two part-​​time divi­sions. For more infor­ma­tion, please visit www​.north​eastern​.edu.