Public health is an essential field that focuses on protecting and improving the health of communities through various strategies such as disease prevention, health promotion, and policy development.
Public health professionals work to address health disparities, infectious diseases, chronic illnesses, and other health concerns that impact populations.
If you are passionate about public health and want to make a career in this field, then pursuing a Master's in Public Health (MPH) can be a great option.
This article will discuss why you should opt for a Master's in Public Health degree.
What is a Master in Public Health?
A Master in Public Health (MPH) is a graduate-level degree that prepares students to work in public health.
MPH programs offer a comprehensive curriculum that covers topics such as epidemiology, biostatistics, environmental health, health policy, and social and behavioural sciences.
MPH graduates have the knowledge and skills to work in various public health settings, including government agencies, non-profit organisations, and healthcare institutions.
Why opt for a Master's in Public Health?
There are several reasons why you should opt for a Master's in Public Health degree. Some of the key benefits of pursuing an MPH are
Diverse career opportunities.
One of the main advantages of pursuing an MPH degree is the wide range of career opportunities available in public health. MPH graduates can work in various settings, such as local, state, and federal government agencies, non-profit organisations, healthcare institutions, and private companies.
Career Opportunities for MPH Graduates
Epidemiologist, Health Policy Analyst
Program Manager, Health Educator
Healthcare Administrator, Researcher
Occupational Health Specialist, Advisor
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median annual salary for health educators and community health workers was $48,140 in May 2020. However, the salary can vary depending on the job title, location, and years of experience. Pursuing an MPH degree can help you qualify for higher-paying positions in the field of public health.
Opportunity to make a difference
Public health is a field that focuses on improving the health and well-being of communities. Pursuing an MPH degree can give you the knowledge and skills to impact people's lives positively. MPH graduates work on various initiatives such as disease prevention, health promotion, and policy development that can help improve the health outcomes of individuals and populations.
MPH programs are offered in various formats, including on-campus, online, and hybrid. This flexibility allows students to choose a program that fits their needs and schedules best. Online MPH programs are top-rated among working professionals who want to pursue a degree while maintaining their current job.
Pursuing an MPH degree can allow you to build a network of like-minded professionals in public health. MPH programs often have a diverse student body with students from various backgrounds and experiences. This can help you establish connections with other professionals and potentially lead to job opportunities in the future.
Admission Requirements for an MPH Program,
The requirements for MPH programs vary depending on the institution. However, most MPH programs require applicants to have a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution. Some programs may also require applicants to have relevant work experience in public health or a related field. In addition to these requirements, MPH programs typically require applicants to submit the following documents:
- Transcripts: Applicants must typically submit official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended.
- Test Scores: Most MPH programs require applicants to submit scores from standardised tests such as the GRE or MCAT. Some programs may waive the test score requirement for applicants who have a certain level of work experience or have completed a graduate degree.
- Letters of Recommendation: Applicants must typically submit two to three letters of recommendation from individuals who can speak to their academic or professional abilities.
- Personal Statement: MPH programs require applicants to submit a personal statement that outlines their academic background, work experience, and career goals.
- Application Fee: Applicants must pay an application fee to submit their application.
MPH programs typically offer a variety of specialisations or concentrations that allow students to focus their studies in a particular area of public health. Some common MPH specialisations include
- Epidemiology studies the distribution and determinants of health and disease in populations.
- Biostatistics: This specialisation focuses on applying statistical methods to analyse health data.
- Health Policy and Management: This specialisation focuses on developing and implementing health policies and managing healthcare organisations.
- Global Health: This specialisation focuses on the health of populations in low- and middle-income countries and the global factors that influence health outcomes.
- Environmental Health: This specialisation focuses on the effects of environmental factors on human health.
- Community Health: This specialisation focuses on the health of specific communities and the development of community-based interventions.
Career Paths for MPH Graduates
MPH graduates can pursue a wide range of career paths in public health. Some common career paths for MPH graduates include:
- Epidemiologist: Epidemiologists study population distribution and determinants of health and disease. They collect and analyse data to identify patterns and trends in disease outbreaks and develop disease prevention and control strategies.
- Health Educator: Health educators develop and implement programs to promote healthy behaviours and prevent illness and disease. They work in various settings, including schools, hospitals, and community organisations.
- Healthcare Administrator: Healthcare administrators manage healthcare facilities, including hospitals, clinics, and nursing homes. They are responsible for developing policies and procedures, managing budgets, and ensuring the facility complies with regulatory requirements.
- Health Policy Analyst: Health policy analysts work in government agencies, non-profit organisations, and think tanks to develop and analyse healthcare policies. They assess the impact of policies on healthcare delivery and make recommendations for policy changes.
- Environmental Health Specialist: Environmental health specialists protect public health by identifying and addressing environmental health hazards, such as air and water pollution, hazardous waste, and foodborne illnesses.
- Public Health Educator: Public health educators work to promote public health by developing and implementing health education programs for individuals and communities.
- Health Communications Specialist: Health communications specialists develop and implement communication strategies to promote public health and raise awareness about health issues. They work in various settings, including government agencies, non-profit organisations, and healthcare facilities.
Salary and Job Outlook for MPH Graduates
The salary and job outlook for MPH graduates can vary depending on their specialisation and the industry in which they work. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for epidemiologists was $74,560 in May 2020.
The median annual salary for health educators and community health workers was $48,140 in May 2020, while the median annual salary for medical and health services managers was $104,280.
The job outlook for MPH graduates is generally positive, with the Bureau of Labor Statistics projecting that employment in healthcare management will grow by 32% from 2019 to 2029. The job outlook for epidemiologists and health educators is also positive, with employment in these fields projected to grow by 5% and 13%, respectively, from 2019 to 2029.
Top 5 industries employing MPH graduates and their median annual salaries
Median Annual Salary
State and Local Government
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals
Outpatient Care Centers
Scientific Research and Development Services
Nursing Care Facilities (Skilled Nursing Facilities)
Overall, a Master of Public Health is an excellent degree choice for individuals who are passionate about public health and want to impact the health and well-being of individuals and communities positively.