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Health promotion specialist hired at Mississippi State

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi State University has a new source for health-related programs.

David R. Buys began his new position as an Extension health specialist and researcher with the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station on May 1. He previously worked as instructor of medicine at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

David R. Buys
David R. Buys

Buys is very familiar with the Extension Service. As a young person, he attended homemakers meetings with his grandmother in Rankin County. He also participated in 4-H’s Rankin Youth Leadership program as a junior in high school and in 4-H program development as a graduate student at Auburn University.

“Extension has long been in my heritage, and I am glad to ‘come home’ to such a strong organization,” Buys said. “I am equally excited to address health issues through research for my home state.”

Buys will work with Extension agents throughout Mississippi to develop health-related programs focused primarily on obesity and obesity-associated diseases. Buys plans to continue to research nutrition, aging and obesity.

“Nutrition is so important at every stage of life. My goal is to work with Mississippians across all spectrums to impart the skills needed to make wise lifestyle choices that promote good health and help prevent and treat obesity,” Buys said. “Nutrition is also important in disease prevention, especially with senior adults. I plan on continuing research in this area.”

Buys also will study the role communities play in health promotion.

Buys received a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Mississippi College, a master’s degree in sociology from Auburn University and a Ph.D. in medical sociology from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He earned a graduate certificate in gerontology and a master’s degree in public health from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, where he completed a postdoctoral fellowship in health services and outcomes research funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and National Institutes of Health.

“Dr. Buys will provide the research and Extension programs we need to address obesity and health related-problems throughout our state,” said Sam Chang, Food Science, Nutrition and Health Promotion department head. “We are thrilled to have someone with his unique expertise in sociology, gerontology, obesity and nutrition.”

Released: June 2, 2014
Contacts: Dr. David Buys
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