Environmental Sciences and Engineering

ESE Professor Rebecca Fry and a team of UNC researchers awarded a $3.25 million grant from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development to investigate the role of the placenta as a driver of children’s later-life health. Fry is Co-PI on the grant, along with Michael O’Shea, MD, division chief of neonatal-perinatal medicine in the department of pediatrics, UNC School of Medicine.
Message from the Chair
"We’re the nation’s only Department of Environment Science and Engineering in a school of public health, and Gillings is the top public school of public health in the U.S. Our graduates are innovative problem-solvers who are particularly well prepared to design and implement effective environmental health solutions... " More >
Dr. Barbara Turpin, headshot
Barbara Turpin, PhD
Professor and Chair

Our department focuses on the interface between people and the environment.

Uniquely situated in a school of public health, our interdisciplinary programs in air quality and atmospheric processes, human exposure and health effects, and sustainable water resources draw from faculty expertise in the physical and life sciences, engineering and policy. Our research strengths include:

  • Characterizing exposures to contaminants in air, water, soil and workplaces;
  • Developing engineering and policy solutions to environmental risks;
  • Molecular approaches to understanding diseases caused by toxic substances in the environment; and
  • Overcoming environmental health challenges in developing countries.

Marla Smith-Nilson

Marla Smith-Nilson (MSEE 1994), founder and Executive Director of Water1st International, is the 2017 Environmental Sciences and Engineering Distinguished Alumna.Visit our Environmental Sciences and Engineering Alumni page for more details.