MPH Job Search Assistance

This is an exciting time to be in the public health field! Below is some information to help you decide which direction you want to go with your degree.

Potential Job Tracks

MPH fellowships 

It is important that you begin planning in your second semester for how you will complete these applications. Take a look at them, make note of their application deadlines and requirements, and then over the summer, start planning for how you will attack these job opportunities. Do NOT wait until you return in the Fall as by then it will probably be too late to effectively plan for these. Also note that there are expenses associated with applying for Fellowships (transcripts, mailing, etc.) so budget for the cost. Finally – CAHME accredited Fellowships can be applied to, but they are really designed for graduates of CAHME accredited programs (like our MHA Program). Most of the hospitals and organizations that offer CAHME Fellowships will check to see if your degree is CAHME accredited. If they do, then you’ve wasted a lot of time and money. There are organizations that do not require CAHME accreditation, but they are still looking for healthcare management related degrees. So choose wisely. All of the Fellowships listed on this page are MPH-based.

Post-graduate Education

Many of you have the option of continuing your education into a number of different fields. The good news is that for some fields (like a PhD in Health Services Research) you won’t pay for your education – in fact you’ll earn a salary. The bad news is that it will take 4+ years for you to finish! You need to begin planning to apply during the second semester. For many international students, this is a good option to consider as masters-level jobs are currently very difficult to obtain in the USA for non-citizens. PhD jobs are more international student friendly. If you are above 3.5 GPA and scored around 1200 GRE, this is something you should seriously be considering as an option.

Medical School

Many students obtain a MPH as a stepping stone to medical school. Many physicians find that a MPH degree greatly enhance their ability to understand public health issues and to practice clinical medicine more effectively. The application process is lengthy and starts early, so begin preparing during the first year.

Other jobs

A good plan is to start with the top three above. If that doesn’t fit, then you can relax a bit because jobs that you would be looking at will open in the Spring. You can start looking to see what is out there, but most employers won’t hold jobs open for very long, so it is best to look for a job when you can say “Yes, I can start very soon!” The summer before the second year is a good time to prepare a list of places to apply, update application materials and to begin preparing for the interview process.

Career Planning Timeline

The career planning process begins the moment you step through our doors! You will need to immediately begin exploring the options available to you and preparing. The practicum is included in this timeline because it is an important step in career development. The experience gained during the practicum will play a large role in your resume and many students gain post-graduation employment at their practicum site or at the very least, use their preceptor as an important reference.

First Semester

  • This is a time of self-discovery. Immerse yourself in your classes, related outside and extracurricular activities, current events, and networking opportunities.
  • Explore areas you are not familiar with to expand your knowledge base.

Second Semester

  • Meet with the HPM Practicum Coordinator, Dr. Hatala, at the beginning of the semester to discuss the practicum. (Read the practicum manual first!)
  • Attend the practicum fair
  • Notify your faculty advisor of your career goals.

Summer Semester

  • Write personal statement and cover letter template and send to your faculty advisor for edits.
  • Update resume with practicum information and send to your faculty advisor for edits
  • Research and make list of places to apply.
  • Begin to request letters of recommendation. 

Third Semester

  • Begin applying for fellowships or other academic programs early in the semester.

Fourth Semester

  • If the other options are not successful, begin looking for a public health related position. Current alumni positions can be viewed here.

Helpful Links