This is the time to enter into the public health sector — the demand for public health careers is expected to steadily grow over the next decade. This exciting field of study will introduce you to an array of fulfilling, diverse job opportunities that concentrate on human health, illnesses, disease prevention and the environment. Public health is integral to every society; it addresses the most pressing health concerns to date by going beyond traditional medical care provided by physicians and current healthcare systems. Through research, public policy and by supporting various organizations, public health graduates learn unique ways to indirectly and directly impact the well-being of a population.
Often labeled a “hot field for a global generation,” public health trains future leaders and advocates for a better tomorrow by offering a strong foundation for studying the health of human populations through education, research and practical, hands-on experience outside of the classroom. Beginning your freshman year, you’ll work directly with distinguished faculty on cutting-edge research. Additionally, Mercyhurst's liberal arts approach gives you an advantage — by combining the public health program with 15 other fields of study, you can create a unique, multidisciplinary undergraduate education that can lead you to a career that better fits your interests.
The public health program at Mercyhurst is one of the only undergraduate public health programs in the country in a fully accredited, four-year, Catholic comprehensive institution, and it is one of only a handful of undergraduate public health programs offered by colleges and universities in the northeast.
And, with a 14-1 student-to-faculty ratio and an average class size of 20 students, you’re never just a number at Mercyhurst. In fact, many upper level courses average 10 or fewer students. We keep our classes small so you can get individualized attention from professors to ensure your success in class and beyond.
Beyond the fact that a degree in public health can lead to fulfilling careers in medicine, health care, biotechnology and the life sciences, there is a strong and evidenced need for public health workers in the coming years. Studies show that America will be short by a quarter of a million public health workers by 2020, a number that represents one-third of the workforce needed to keep society healthy.
With only 16% of schools offer undergraduate public health programs, Mercyhurst public health graduates have excellent prospects of finding work in the field, entering one of the more than 50 graduate schools of public health or continuing on to medical school or a law school offering a health law program.
Examples of the jobs public health graduates can pursue include: epidemiologist, health educator, biostatistician, health services administrator, clinical outcomes specialist, infection control coordinator, research scientist, health communications specialist and environmental health intelligence analyst.
A degree from Mercyhurst prepares you for this exciting and dynamic career.
|Major(s)||Public Health Major|
|Minor(s)||Public Health Minor|
Ready to begin your journey in public health? Apply online today -- it's free and getting your application started takes only a few brief minutes. Interested students may also consult the course catalog for more information. As a liberal arts institution, all undergraduate students complete Mercyhurst's core curriculum.
Consistent with the mission of Mercyhurst University, the Public Health Department at Mercyhurst seeks to train students to be globally responsible citizens who take intelligent actions to improve the lives and conditions of people around the world. The Department strives to: · Instill a passion for public health knowledge and action in undergraduate students · Train the next generation of public health workers who "think globally, act locally" · Become a community resource and repository for public health knowledge · Serve as an exemplar for undergraduate public health studies for colleges and universities around the country · Develop public health curricula, case studies and learning tools that can be adopted by other public health programs · Design and implement public health continuing education training opportunities for existing members of the public health workforce · Conduct cutting edge public health research designed to improve the health and well being of populations of people · Disseminate public health knowledge through peer-reviewed publications, public reports and national, regional and local presentations · Provide high school and college students with information about public health as a career option · Increase awareness about the health and conditions of populations around the world
The goal of Public Health Department is to train students to be able to gain entry-level positions in the health sector and/or to help them gain entrance into high quality graduate or professional schools. Graduates of the public health program go on to pursue jobs in the public and private sector, medical degrees, law degrees, and graduate degrees in a diverse range of fields including public health, immunology, and environmental health. The Public Health Department has a unique focus that provides students with skills that are: · Distinct and unique · Transferable (to other fields of study) · Marketable (to a wide range of employers or graduate/professional schools) Students are trained in the cutting edge of public health science. In addition to core public health methods, they learn new and evolving methods that are likely to shape the field over the course of the next decade including crowd sourcing, social network analysis, and agent based modeling. Students will graduate with a distinct set of skills that are marketable to a wide range of employers or that will make them strong candidates for further studies. These skills include strong data analysis, statistical programming, and database development skills. In addition, from the day students enter the program, they will be taught "soft skills" related to professionalism, teamwork, and advancement that will put them on a path to exceed in their careers. The public health program has a unique approach that defines the program and sets it apart from most other undergraduate programs in public health. Three defining principles provide maximum benefit for career development: · Competency focused · Team-based · Applied and experiential Knowledge acquisition is only one aspect of learning. The public health program focuses on teaching students core competencies that are critical for a successful career in public health. This approach to learning focuses not only on what students know when they graduate but also on what they can do and is consistent with professional expectations for public health graduates entering the workforce or graduate studies. The public health curriculum is also team based and harnesses the power of teams to improve student outcomes and learning through case studies, projects, exercises and simulations. This plan summarizes the learning outcomes and competencies for the Public Health Department. It provides a curricular map for these outcomes and links them to measurable assessment tools that will be used in the next five years to evaluate the Department's success and to engage in continuous quality improvement.
David DauseyPh.D. Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs; Former Chair and Professor of Public Health Office: Main 104 Phone: (814) 824-2268
Eileen ZinchiakProgram Coordinator, High School Coordinator Office: Hirt 311 Phone: (814) 824-3671
James TeufelPh.D. Assistant Professor of Public Health, Director, Mercyhurst Institute for Public Health Office: Hirt 312B Phone: (814) 824-2158
Paula Davis-OlwellPh.D. Visiting Assistant Professor Office: Hirt 312D Phone: (814) 824-2157
Thomas CookM.P.H., Ph.D. Department Chair and Assistant Professor of Public Health Office: HC 312C Phone: (814) 824-2035