North Carolina Public Health Training Center

at the University of North Carolina Wilmington

The North Carolina Public Health Training Center (PHTC) is housed within the College of Health and Human Services’ Center for Healthy Communities at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. The purpose of the North Carolina PHTC is to strengthen the competencies of the current and future public health workforce, expose public health students to the value of working in underserved areas, advocate for public health systems and policies and contribute to the work of the national PHTC program.  This mission is achieved through the provision of workforce trainings in collaboration with partners, faculty and student collaborative projects and student placements.

The University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW), the state’s coastal university, is committed to innovation in its operation and activities; diversity in enrollment and employment; enhancing the ties between faculty and student research; expanding the international character of the student body and curriculum; interdisciplinary approaches; and increasing the integration of teaching and research.  The College of Health and Human Services (CHHS) consists of three professional schools (health and applied human sciences, nursing, social work) and was established in 2010 as the doorway for UNCW to make a positive impact on the health and quality of life of residents of the state of North Carolina and beyond.  The over-arching goal of the CHHS is to help individuals, families and communities live healthier, more prosperous and more productive lives.

  • Interprofessional Collaborative Education and Practice
  • Community-Based Participatory Research (CBPR)
  • Collective Impact, Asset Based Community Development and Results Based Accountability
  • Community Health Assessment and Program Evaluation
  • Chronic Disease Prevention and Management: Obesity, Hypertension and Diabetes
  • Healthy Aging and Gerontology/Geriatrics
  • Coastal Health – Environmental Health Issues
  • Cultural Competency Training
  • Community and Public Health Nursing
  • Social Work – Solution-Focused Approach
  • Health Promotion and Education
  • Recreation Therapy
  • Veterans Health
  • North Carolina Division of Public Health
  • Southeastern North Carolina Regional Health Collaborative (SENCRHC)
  • Brunswick County Health Department, Columbus County Health Department, New Hanover County Health Department, Onslow County Health Department, Pender County Health Department, Duplin County Health Department, and Bladen County Health Department, South East Area Health Education Center (SEAHEC) and the CHHS
  • North Carolina Institute for Public Health, Gillings School of Global Public Health, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
  • Department of Public Health, Brody School of Medicine, East Carolina University
  • Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Institute for Health and Human Services, College of Health Sciences, Appalachian State University

Charles HardyCharles J. Hardy, PhD

NCPHTC Director

Dr. Hardy is the Founding Dean of the College of Health and Human Services (CHHS) at the University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW).  Prior to coming to UNCW, Professor Hardy served as Professor and Founding Dean of the Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health (JPHCOPH) at Georgia Southern University from 2006-2011.  During his tenure at Georgia Southern, he also served as the Dean of the Jack N. Averitt College of Graduate Studies from 2002-2005, Associate Dean of the College of Health and Human Sciences during 2001-2002 and as the Chair of the Department of Health & Kinesiology from 1994-2001.  Professor Hardy began his academic career at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was a tenured Associate Professor in the Department of Exercise and Sport Science from 1983-1994. He received his Ph.D. from Louisiana State University in Kinesiology/Psychology and was a post-doctoral research fellow in the Department of Exercise and Sport Science at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  He also holds a M.S. from The University of Tennessee at Knoxville in Exercise Science and a B.S. from East Carolina University in Health and Physical Education.


Randy CottrellRandy Cottrell, DEd

NCPHTC Co-Director

Dr. Cottrell is Professor and Program Coordinator in the Public Health Studies program at the University of North Carolina Wilmington.  He is also an Affiliated Professor in the Office of Applied Public Health at Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University.   He received his doctorate in Health Education from Penn State. He has published 80+ articles and co-authored textbooks on stress, weight control, health education foundations, and research methods. He served a two-year term as President of the American Association for Health Education and is currently on the Board of the Foundation for the Advancement of Health Education.  Dr. Cottrell served as a trustee for the Society for Public Health Education, and currently is co-chair of the National Implementation Accreditation Task Force.  Randy was named a Fulbright Scholar in 2011 and spent six months teaching and conducting research at Zhejiang University in Hangzhou, China.


Justine ReelJustine Reel, PhD, LPC, CC-AASP

NCPHTC Performance Accountability and Research Coordinator

Dr. Reel is the Associate Dean of Research and Innovation of the College of Health and Human Services at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. She also serves as a tenured professor in the School of Health and Applied Human Sciences. Prior to coming to UNCW, Dr. Reel served as a faculty member at the University of Utah from 2001-2014. With the support of foundation funding she continues to investigate ways to assess intuitive exercise in clinical populations. Dr. Reel has published the following books: Hidden Faces of Eating Disorders and Body Image, Eating Disorders: An Encyclopedia of Causes, Treatment, and Prevention, and The Female Athlete Triad along with over 70 manuscripts and book chapters about eating disorders, obesity and other health-related topics. She currently serves on the editorial board for several scientific journals including Women in Physical Activity and Sport, Sport Psychology in Action, Eating Disorders: Treatment and Prevention, Journal of Clinical Sport Psychology, and Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology. Prior to 2001 she served as a faculty member at West Chester University, Temple University, and Salem College (Winston-Salem, North Carolina). Dr. Reel completed her doctoral work at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in Exercise and Sport Science. She also received M.S. degrees in Exercise and Sport Science and Counselor Education from UNCG. She earned her Bachelor’s degree from North Carolina State University.


Leah Mayo, MPH

NCPHTC Program Coordinator

Leah Mayo coordinates the North Carolina Public Health Training Center housed under the College of Health and Human Services at the University of North Carolina Wilmington.