Dr. Silvia Koso knows a thing or two about making plans, executing them and evaluating the results – both inside a classroom and out in the real world.
Dr. Koso, who teaches Public Health Program Planning, Implementation and Evaluation (PUBH 5002), has spent more than 15 years in the field, conducting an array of program planning and evaluation projects, including multi-million dollar AIDS and TB prevention and management projects in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, non-profit services to vulnerable groups in Alberta, and the development of health promotion strategies in the NWT, five degrees above the Arctic Circle.
Essential skills in public health
“I have done many things in my life and they all involved planning, implementation and evaluation of health and social services programs,” says Dr. Koso, who has an MD and an MPH specializing in Health Promotion.
Luckily for her students, Dr. Koso brings that wealth of knowledge to her teaching, balancing both textbook learning and practical application of the course content.
“Program planning and evaluation theoretical knowledge and practical application are essential skills in public health. Planning, implementation and evaluation of health interventions is a huge part of many careers in public health, even if those chosen careers are more focused on evidence generation or on health policy.”
In her class, part of that real-world application includes work with partner programs or organizations, for which students are required to conduct situation and evaluability assessments of a chosen real-life project, and propose frameworks and tools for evaluating the project.
“It’s wonderful when students understand that program planning and evaluation are not a wishy-washy-anything-goes undertaking, but a theory-based, evidence-informed set of carefully structured activities. I also enjoy the fruitful discussions we have when we critique current and past programs and propose possible solutions,” says Dr. Koso.
Planning also applies to craft beer, fitness and poetry
As it turns out, those planning, implementation and evaluation skills come in handy in unexpected places as well.
“I’m a big craft beer aficionada and by now, I can say, a connoisseuse. I have travelled to all corners of Alberta and some parts of BC and Saskatchewan visiting craft breweries, tasting great beer, meeting people, and getting to know Canada, my second homeland,” says Dr. Koso, who is originally from Serbia (the former Yugoslavia).
“I’m also a group fitness instructor, which helps me shed the beer calories and meet like-minded people. Another passion of mine is poetry, an area where the ability to hear from and read to other amazing poets has blossomed through the online world,” Dr. Koso says.
To learn more about putting your planning, implementation and evaluation skills to good use, explore ULethbridge graduate programs in Public Health.