A masters in public health is a popular advanced degree. As our times are telling us, public health needs on a local and global scale are only increasing as are the definitions of what falls under the public health umbrella. In these terms, the outlook for this career path is only projected to increase. The occupational outlook handbook through the US Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected that the field of public health will increase a minimum of 14 percent between 2018 and 2028. There are many key areas of specialization in public health and finding a focus is the first step to laying a foundation for a career in public health. A bachelor’s degree paves the way for many opportunities in the field of public health, namely entry level positions in a myriad of veins. Many people with a bachelor’s degree choose to work as research assistants, public health administrators, non-profit renaissance people, and even quality improvement coordinators, among many other fields. Generally one could work their way up the ladder with work experience, but a masters degree in public health is more of a sure thing as far as getting ahead in the field.
Masters in Public Health Jobs
There are many jobs one can achieve with a masters in public health. Masters in public health concentrations play a big role in determining the job you will qualify for. Each MPH program generally offers specific specializations, many of which are pretty specific to the niche for which the student will focus their career. Some of the masters of public health specializations include: health service administration, biostatistics, emergency readiness and disaster response, epidemiology, environmental health readiness, among many others. Each specialization generally corresponds to a variety of disciplines within the field that can include both research and/ or practice. Some common MPH careers include:
Public Health Consultant
This is someone who is an expert in public health programming and ensures that the programs are offering effective services to the communities they are supposed to be serving. A primary role in this career is the evaluation of an organization’s programs in public health, medicinal storage, treatment process, and the ways they handle their materials. Generally they produce a professional analysis report that highlights their program evaluation to the agencies that have hired them. They then recommend particular improvements that they believe the organization should prioritize.
Clinical Research Coordinator
One of the biggest contributions the field of public health makes to society is research. Research coordinators are critical to the field as they activate the teams necessary to conduct effective research. They gather volunteers that are needed for a variety of studies. They are responsible for handling a lot of paperwork including the materials that people sign to consent to study participation within the research process. They are also often the ones that analyze and share the research findings with the agencies involved.
Health Promotion Specialist
These are generally professionals that act as educators in the field of public health. They gather information that is necessary for the public to understand and employ. They are interested in training the public on ways to have a stronger relationship to wellness as individuals and communities. Research is required to create many of these programs as is the ability to effectively review biostatistical data in order to change health education programming that is ready for effective change.
Public Health Epidemiologist
When looking at most masters in public health specializations you will most likely find something in epidemiology at most schools. Epidemiologists play an important role in the disciplines related to public health. A public health epidemiologist is responsible for looking at and understanding data that relates to illness, disease, and injury. They are often also responsible for creating reports that display their findings and are delivered in a way that is digestible to the organizations they are supposed to support. Epidemiologists are experts in statistics and specifically the statistics that encompass public health and they support treatment options and services of prevention within communities.
Public Health Educator
They are experts in both education and in public health. They are the ones that use popular education skills to relay critical health information that may include exercise, nutrition, chronic disease, and drug use to communities. They often develop effective programs and also are the ones responsible for outreach. This includes outreach, advertising and other messaging. Sometimes they offer programming at schools and treatment centers within various communities.
There are many excellent reasons to get an advanced degree in public health. There are no shortages of jobs or need, which is not the case for many career paths during and in the wake of coronavirus. What better time than now to kickstart an opportunity like a masters in public health degree.