Dean's Message

Dean Michael Lacourse

Thank you for visiting and welcome to the College of Health Sciences (COHS), the newest academic college at Sam Houston State University.

We officially became the 7th academic college at Sam Houston State University on September 1, 2013 by integrating faculty, staff and students from the School of Nursing, Department of Health and Kinesiology and the Office of Medical and Allied Health programs. The Department of Health and Kinesiology boasts a long and rich tradition of educating health, physical education, exercise and sport professionals who have collectively served millions of Texans by promoting health and well-being over the past half century. The School of Nursing, only two years old, has already graduated dozens of students who are providing quality nursing care at hospitals and health care organizations throughout southeast Texas and was recently awarded initial accreditation by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN). The Office of Medical and Allied Health Programs provides exceptional advising and mentoring for students pursuing admission to professional health programs in medicine, dentistry, physical and occupational therapy,
optometry, and other clinical health care programs.

Despite world-class medical care and research facilities in Houston, Austin, San Antonio, Dallas and elsewhere across the State, nine world-class medical schools and over 100 approved RN education programs, the overall health status of Texans is well-below the national average. When compared with other states, Texas ranks near the bottom in many determinants of health—from behaviors and community factors to public policies and clinical care—which are reflected in poor health outcomes. In a nation already with poor health relative to the rest of the world, Texas is sadly at or near the bottom of the nation. Much work needs to be done and we intend to contribute!

Our vision is to become an acknowledged state leader and a major contributor in educating health science professionals by preparing graduates to succeed in their chosen health profession through mastery of relevant knowledge and skills, a well-developed sense of professionalism, and commitment to promoting health and providing quality care. Faculty will collaborate with many community and global partners to provide accessible student-centered health professions education for a diverse population of traditional and non-traditional students and advance health science knowledge and evidence-based practice through scholarship. Faculty and students will embrace their responsibility for stewardship of individual and population health and quality of life in Texas, the nation and the world by employing and communicating evidence-based practices.

Our plans for the upcoming year include the formation of a new academic department in health services and promotion and the launch of as many as seven new degree programs in fall 2014.  New faculty and staff will be hired and courses will be infused with advanced digital assets to leverage the vast educational resources available through the internet and emerging technologies.

The College of Health Sciences will soon be graduating 100s of new health professionals annually that will enable Sam Houston State University to continue its 134 year tradition of serving the most important societal needs of Texas.  If your passion is to positively impact individual and population health and quality of life in Texas, the nation and the world, please consider joining our team of exceptional faculty or enrolling in one of our degree programs!


Michael Lacourse


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