An advanced degree in public health provides the abilities, skills and knowledge needed to be part of the solution to society’s healthcare issues. There has never been a better time for public health degrees. As the field of healthcare expands and more communities put preventative care programs into place, the demand for public health professionals is increasing faster than for many other occupations.
Management positions in public health typically require a master’s degree. An advanced degree in public health can increase your appeal to employers, help you secure better benefits, increase job security and allow you to be recognized as an expert in your field. Kiplinger’s Personal Finance, a leading authority on individual financial decision-making, includes the masters in public health (MPH) degree as one of the five advanced degrees still worth the debt (along with doctor of pharmacy, MBA, law and medical degrees).
Public health professionals who earn an MPH degree gain a deeper understanding of the factors that influence community and national healthcare policy. They learn how to apply qualitative and quantitative problem-solving skills and use multidisciplinary strategies to develop healthcare solutions. When they embark upon careers in public health, they have the necessary educational background to assume leadership roles.
Featured Online Healthcare Programs
|MPH@Simmons||MPH@Simmons, the online Master of Public Health from Simmons College, is designed to give you the real-world skills you need to address health inequity on a local, national, and global level.|
|MPH@GW||An innovative online Master of Public Health program offered by the top-ranked Milken Institute School of Public Health at the George Washington University.|
|MHA@GW||Offered by the Milken Institute School of Public Health at the George Washington University, this online Executive Master of Health Administration program is designed for healthcare professionals who aspire to become leaders in their field.|
Coursework in MPH programs usually covers core public health topics including epidemiology, behavioral health, environmental health and public health administration. Students who are enrolled in a school of public health’s degree program may have the option of focusing on a specialty area of study like health management policy or global health. Upon completion of specialty area requirements, the student will receive a certificate or letter from the dean of the school verifying completion of specialty area coursework. Study in a specialty area can enhance a public health professional’s resume and provide an edge in the job market.
Some schools of public health offer separate degrees that focus on a specific public health topic. Examples include master’s in health administration and master of health services administration. Students who are interested in the research and academic side of public health may chose to earn a master of science or PhD instead of an MPH.
Professionals who have already earned degrees in other fields such as nursing, social work, law, business, public policy, medicine or veterinary science or students who are pursuing degrees in these fields may be interested in a dual degree in public health. These degrees typically include MS Nursing/MPH, MSW/MPH, PharmD/MPH, MD/MPH, DDS/MPH and JD/MPH. Many schools of public health offer accelerated MPH degree programs for students who already hold an advanced degree in another field. Each school of public health has the authority to tailor their public health degree programs, though many do so in accordance to the core competencies identified by the Association of Schools of Public Health. Students who have specific interests in public health should contact individual schools to learn more about the school’s public health curriculum.
The field of public health includes a wide range of careers. Whether you want to conduct research, work directly with the public or focus on a specific health issue, you’ll find that earning an MPH opens the door to a plethora of challenging healthcare jobs.