Dr. Watts signing

Formal Adoption of the Okanagan Charter

The University of Alabama at Birmingham is the first university in the United States to adopt the Okanagan Charter and become an internationally recognized Health Promoting University. ‘Adopting the charter aligns who we have always been as an institution with an internationally known framework and network, and UAB will lead the nation as the network chair of U.S. HPUs,‘ Watts said.

SGA president


‘As students, it is paramount that we feel seen, valued, and supported holistically by our university. Attending a university that is openly committed to prioritizing and protecting all dimensions of our health gives us confidence in knowing that we are seen as individuals rather than statistics. UAB has a campus-wide culture of promoting all aspects of health and well-being. That culture facilitates students being more open and proactive about addressing health issues as they arise. It is expected that higher educational institutions will develop their students into effective contributors to communities and societies, both locally and globally.’
— Jasmine Benjamin, Graduate Student Government President, Fall 2020 – Spring 2022

Dean Erwin


‘Health Promoting Universities across the globe are working to transform the health and sustainability of our current and future societies, strengthen communities and contribute to the wellbeing of people, places, and the planet.  UAB has the opportunity to lead by example through its long-term commitment to the health of its people, and now by extending its focus to the wellbeing of the campus, our communities beyond UAB, and indeed across the globe. It is a Health Promoting University by incorporating wellbeing into all that we do – from our efforts to improve the quality of our built environment, which has direct and indirect health benefits, to our on-going attention to our curriculum, and how we train the leaders of tomorrow to make a difference.’
— Paul C. Erwin; MD; DrPH; Dean, School of Public Health