1 - 5 Years
College Graduates Interested in Public Health
Public health is an interdisciplinary field of study and practice with two primary goals: (1) the prevention of illness, disease, and injury; and (2) the promotion and protection of human health. In achieving these goals, public health emphasizes social justice, supports human rights and respects the dignity of individuals and the integrity of communities.
Public health professionals track outbreaks of disease, conduct community health assessments, plan health education programs and direct campaigns to reduce risk factors that foster chronic health conditions like heart disease and diabetes. They develop and advocate policies, both public and private, that reduce harmful environmental exposures and that provide increased access to preventive health services for underserved populations. Many engage in public health research and support multi-cultural global health initiatives here and abroad.
Public health professionals perform these tasks in local, state and federal health agencies, community health centers and hospitals, non-governmental health organizations (NGOs), schools and universities, professional health agencies, health insurance companies and businesses.
The Jefferson College of Population Health (JCPH) offers a Graduate Certificate in Public Health, which provides students with the foundational knowledge and skills for public health practice, and a Master of Public Health (MPH), which is nationally accredited through the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH). Students develop competencies in several key public health areas: health behavior and social sciences, biostatistics, environmental health, epidemiology, policy and advocacy, program planning, implementation and evaluation, and others. The interdisciplinary curriculum stresses leadership skills, systems thinking, health communication, global health, and cultural humility and competency.
JCPH offers several pathways for students to complete an MPH degree. Students can complete the program on a part-time basis or in as little as one academic year. LEARN MORE
The Council on Education for Public Health has identified the essential knowledge and skills needed in public health practice, education and research. The JCPH MPH program uses these competencies to guide curriculum development and assess student learning. Every course in the program links these competencies to graded assignments allowing faculty and students to track progress. LEARN MORE
Graduate public health students come from a variety of fields and have included:
- Recent college graduates with majors in natural or social sciences, including pre-med or other pre-professional students seeking an educational experience during their gap or glide year
- Not-so-recent college graduates with relevant work experience wishing to enhance their health-related career or make a career change
- Students currently enrolled in a professional program (medicine, law, pharmacy, social work) who wish to earn an additional degree in public health as part of a dual degree program
- Health or related professionals working in government, community health organizations, healthcare settings, health insurance companies, the pharmaceutical industry and academic institutions
The Graduate Certificate in Public Health requires completion of 18 credits, all of which can be applied to the MPH degree at a later time.
The nationally accredited MPH requires completion of 45 credits and includes a Clerkship - Applied Practice Experience (C-APE) and Capstone Project or Integrative Learning Experience (ILE).
- Earned baccalaureate degree with approximate GPA of 3.0 or higher at an accredited institution
- One of the following:
- Competitive score on the GRE or other graduate entrance examination
- Graduate degree with a GPA of 3.0 or higher from an accredited institution
- Successful completion of three or more graduate-level courses, with grade of B or higher, earned at an accredited institution
- Undergraduate coursework or degree with a GPA of 3.3 or higher and a grade of B or higher from a Jefferson-affiliated college or university
- Previous professional or volunteer
- Preferred: Competency in basic statistics