Public Health Career Paths

What is public health?
Public health is the science of protecting and improving the health of communities through education, promotion of healthy lifestyles and research for disease and injury prevention. Public health professionals analyze the effect on health of genetics, personal choice and the environment in order to develop programs that protect the health of your family and community.

The field of public health is highly varied and encompasses many academic disciplines. Public health, however, is mainly composed of the following core areas:

  • Behavioral Science/Health Education
  • Biostatistics
  • Environmental Health
  • Epidemiology
  • Health Services Administration/Management
  • International/Global Health
  • Maternal and Child Health
  • Nutrition
  • Public Health Laboratory Practice
  • Public Health Policy
  • Public Health Practice

Education in the field of public health requires a master’s degree in public health (MPH). To enter a public health program requires an undergraduate degree and completion of prerequisite course work. Prerequisite course work varies depending on the concentration focus of the degree. Concentrations of the degree are in the areas of environmental health, epidemiology, biostatistics, health education/behavioral science, health services administration/policy and management and emergency preparedness. Consult the program directly for specific course work before applying.

Where is a public health program offered?
San Diego State University (SDSU) offers a program.

Are there any scholarships available? 
To learn about financial assistance, visit scholarships for school and training programs.