Robert Veninga earned a baccalaureate, masters, and Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota during the 1960s and early 1970s. In 1969, he joined the faculty of the School of Public Health at the University of Minnesota, serving as an assistant dean from 1972 to 1976, and as associate dean and executive officer of the School from 1976 to 1980. From 1985 to 87, he was division head of Health Management and Policy.
Robert Veninga begins with describing his background, including his education. He discusses some of his experiences as a faculty member in the School of Public Health (SPH), as assistant dean, and as associate dean. He describes his research in speech communication, the SPH in the 1960s, the relationship between the SPH and the Minnesota Health Department, the SPH’s collaboration with community agencies, the Summer Institute, the relationship between divisions in the SPH, relations between the SPH and other health sciences divisions and their deans, major challenges for the SPH in the 1970s, funding, the shift from an emphasis on teaching to one on research in the 1970s, Public Health Nursing, the effort in the 1970s to establish a school of allied health, the Center for Long Term Care Administrative Education, the Interdisciplinary Studies Program, the Center for Health Services Research, the Program in Human Sexuality, retrenchments in the 1980s, space, the Hospital and Health Care Administration program’s move to the Carlson School of Management, and recruitment of minority students and faculty. He talks about Gaylord Anderson, Lee Stauffer, Lyle French, Bright Dornblaser, Edith Leyasmeyer, and Robert Kane.
Robert Veninga was born in Milwaukee, WI, around 1940. He received his B.A. in psychology from the University of Minnesota in 1963; his Bachelor of Divinity from North American Baptist Seminary in Sioux Falls, SD, in 1966; his M.A. in Speech-Communication from the UMN in 1969; and his Ph.D. in Speech-Communication at the University of Minnesota in 1972. In 1969, he joined the faculty of the School of Public Health (SPH) at the University of Minnesota. He became Assistant dean of the SPH in 1972, then Associate Dean and Executive Officer of the SPH in 1976. He left the dean’s office in 1980. From 1985-87, he was division head of Health Management and Policy. He is now retired.