MPH Generalist Degree



[MPH Community Health Emphasis]   [MPH Global Health Emphases]

The MPH degree is appropriate for the student who plans a career as a practice focused professional in public health that does not necessarily involve research. The program has always offered a curriculum embracing the core areas of knowledge basic to public health both recognized from the community as well as our accrediting body the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH).

See the MPH Generalist Curriculum here.

MPH Community Health Emphasis

The Community Health emphasis' objective is to provide a foundation of collaboration among community health professionals. Students take two foundational courses and choose three electives to complete the emphasis for a total of 15 credits. The CDC reports that "working at the community level promotes healthy living, helps prevent chronic diseases and brings the greatest health benefits to the greatest number of people in need" (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Chronic Disease: A Significant Public Health Threat, https://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dch/about/index.htm).

Students within this emphasis will learn to promote health at a community level through education and prevention. There is a growing demand for public health workers in both these areas of concentration and the estimated growth of the workforce is expected to be better than average. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the workforce focused in community health workers is projected to grow 16 percent between 2016 and 2026. Positions in environmental science (including environmental health) are projected to grow 11 percent, and epidemiology positions are projected to increase nine percent. Frequently, the role of prevention and eradication of both communicable and non-communicable diseases falls to health programs outside of established health care systems.

In addition to the Foundational Public Health Knowledge and Foundational Competencies as required by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH), students in the Global Health emphasis will attain competencies specific to this area of concentration/performing in a global health profession:

  • Apply communication theories (i.e., communication, social marketing, health literacy, media advocacy and risk & communication theories) using traditional and innovative best practices to address the health needs of the community.
  • Demonstrate methods to collect and synthesize various forms of primary and secondary data (quantitative and qualitative) to prioritize and address the health needs of the community.
  • Demonstrate leadership skills to identify and coordinate formal and informal organizations and stakeholders towards a collaborative effort to improve the health of the community.
  • Apply evidence-based approaches for identifying and addressing health disparities.
  • Apply evidence-based approaches for sustaining individual and/or community health behavior change.
  • Apply community health assessment, planning, and evaluation skills to selected area of expertise.

See the MPH Generalist Curriculum here.

MPH Global Health Emphases

The Global Health emphasis' objective is to provide a foundation of public health within communities and health professionals throughout the globe and in the role of both clinical and non-clinical health-professionals. This will allow students to confront emerging global health issues, deal with endemic health problems, both communicable and non-communicable, that cross international borders, and ensure quality health for the global populations.

Worldwide, and especially in low/middle income countries (LMIC), health care systems struggle to deal with their national burden of communicable disease and more recently, with alarming increases in non-communicable diseases.

In Utah, there are over 25 non-profit organizations that focus at least in part on global health issues. Many others, including state and local health departments, have positions that focus on vulnerable and underserved populations in the State. Notable NGOs operating in Utah include the International Rescue Committee and the American Red Cross. Academic centers in Utah, including the University of Utah are engaged in globally focused global health research and programming, including local research and activities focused on Utah’s refugee population. The large refugee population in Utah has led to the involvement of the state and local health departments to address global health issues.

In addition to the Foundational Public Health Knowledge and Foundational Competencies as required by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH), students in the Global Health emphasis will attain competencies specific to this area of concentration/performing in a global health profession:

  • Analyze the roles, relationships, and resources of the entities influencing global health and development through comparison of national models and health systems.
  • Apply ethical approaches of human rights and social justice in global health research and practice working with community partners, vulnerable populations, and/or in low-resource settings.
  • Apply monitoring, evaluation and analysis techniques to global health programs, policies and outcomes across a range of cultural, economic and health contexts including the use of disparate data sources to describe the health of populations.
  • Propose sustainable and evidence-based multi-sectoral interventions, considering the global burden of disease and determinants of global health specific to the local area with an awareness of local and national traditions and practices.
  • Display critical self-reflection, cultural humility, cultural literacy and ongoing learning in global health.

See the Global Health Curriculum here.

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Contact Information

Kelsey Townsend
Academic Advisor
Phone: 801-587-7896
Email: kelsey.townsend@utah.edu

Video chat on Cranium Cafe with Kelsey Townsend