The M.P.H. degree is the most widely recognized professional credential for leadership positions in public health practice. This degree is appropriate for those who wish to pursue careers in developing, planning, managing, or evaluating health promotion and disease prevention programs, or in conducting public health related research. The Master of Public Health Program prepares students with a broad understanding of the core areas of public health combined with a focus on competencies specific to the concentration area of health education and health behavior. M.P.H. graduates will be able to integrate and apply their knowledge to address public health problems, and will possess basic skills and competencies necessary for public health practice in a wide range of public and private institutions.
The job market for individuals with an M.P.H. is excellent both domestically and internationally. M.P.H. graduates are qualified for jobs in diverse environments. Students may obtain positions in traditional public health settings like local and state health departments, and community-based health organizations. Additionally graduates may find employment with national and international governmental and non-governmental organizations like the Center for Disease Control & Prevention, American Cancer Society, the United Way, and American Red Cross. Graduates may assume positions such as community health educators or program managers for the aforementioned types of organizations, health information specialists for the federal government, research associates for hospitals or pharmaceutical companies, worksite wellness/health promotion specialists for corporations or schools, and other mid-level management positions across a diverse range of institutions.
UNF’s program exists in a flourishing public health and health care services marketplace. Numerous non-governmental and non-profit health related organizations and agencies exist in the region, as well as 13 hospitals, Mayo Clinic, and 2 Navy bases. UNF, Jacksonville, and the Northeast Florida region overall are growing, both in terms of overall population, and diversity. Jacksonville, Florida is geographically situated as a gateway for the movement of people and goods. Numerous opportunities exist for student internships, volunteer activities, and permanent employment. UNF has been rated one of the best college values in the country. The campus is located in beautiful, sunny, northeast Florida, just minutes from the downtown Jacksonville and riverfront areas, as well as the Atlantic Ocean. The campus has been rated the most scenic in the state. It consists of over 1,000 acres, including the Sawmill Slough Nature Preserve, and contains miles of walking trails and ponds for outdoor exercise and recreation.
UNF’s M.P.H. program faculty are dedicated to providing a quality educational experience. Because the program is relatively small, students receive ample individual attention, and enjoy relatively small class sizes. Nearly all the required courses in the program are taught by full time M.P.H. Program faculty, not adjuncts, part time instructors, or Ph.D. students.
Graduates are eligible to become Certified in Public Health (CPH) by passing the CPH exam offered by the National Board of Public Health Examiners (NBPHE). Graduates are also prepared to sit for the Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) examination. The CHES title is awarded to those who have met the standards established by the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing (NCHEC).
The UNF MPH program currently offers two concentrations:
Epidemiology and Health Promotion/Health Education. The general curriculum for
all MPH students includes coursework in the 5 core areas of public heath
(Health Behavior, Biostatistics, Epidemiology, Health Services Organization,
and Environmental Health), plus additional coursework in Research Methods. The
Epidemiology curriculum includes advanced epidemiology and biostatistics
courses. The Health Promotion/Health Education curriculum includes courses in program
planning and evaluation. The curriculum focuses on knowledge and skills for
determining, understanding, and modifying factors that influence population
health, including socio-economic conditions, political systems and policies,
cultural beliefs and practices, behavioral risk factors, and environmental
For more information concerning courses please visit our course listings webpage.
UNF’s program requires 45 graduate credits, which includes the Capstone and Internship.
UNF’s program has a full time and a part time sequence. The full time program can be completed in 2 years (including fall, spring, and summer terms). The part time sequence can be completed in 3 years.
MPH Program is offered in a hybrid format. Each course is offered once per
academic year in one of three ways:
face-to-face; 2) distance learning; or 3) hybrid. Face-to-face courses meet on UNF campus,
typically one night per week, 6:00-8:45pm.
Distance learning courses are offered online with no more than 20% of the
classes meeting face-to-face. Hybrid
courses are a combination of the first two methods, with no more than half of
classes meeting face-to-face. This
format makes the UNF MPH Program very accessible to those working full time
while still providing meaningful interaction with faculty and peers.
A baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or its equivalent from a foreign institution with a GPA of 3.0 or higher in all work attempted in the last 60 credit hours of undergraduate study.
Additional program requirements:
Official transcripts from all attended institutions
GRE test scores:
153 verbal and 144 quantitative (If the GRE
was taken prior to July 1, 2011: 1000
combined verbal and quantitative scores with no lower than 400 on either
Letter of intent describing
reasons for seeking an MPH degree short and long-term goals
Two letters of recommendations
Students should be aware that admission into any graduate program is granted on a competitive basis. Students meeting minimum requirements may be denied admission based on such factors as program capacity or academic discretion. Likewise, students may be considered for admission as an exception if stated admissions criteria are not met.
For more information or questions concerning admissions please visit the Graduate School
Students are encouraged to become members of the UNF student chapter of the Florida Association of Professional Health Educators and the Florida Public Health Association, and to apply for membership in Eta Sigma Gamma, a National Health Education Honorary. Additionally, students are encouraged to become involved in community service and to obtain public health practice experience by volunteering or completing a field experience for class credit at local health related organizations and community agencies.
All accredited M.P.H. programs are required to provide a Culminating Experience and a Public Health Practice Experience. UNF’s program accomplishes these objectives through the Capstone and Internship courses, completed in the final 2 terms of the program. The Capstone course focuses on improving students’ professional preparation for careers in public health, the development of their internship project plans, and preparation for the program’s comprehensive examination and the national CPH and CHES exams. The internship culminates the student’s experience, and provides the structure by which he/she applies knowledge and skills gained throughout the program in an actual public health practice setting. Typical student projects are focused on planning, implementing, and/or evaluating health programs, grant writing and submission, or conducting research projects.
The M.P.H. degree can be used as a stepping stone to pursuing a Ph.D. or other doctorate, or prior to pursuing an MD. For example, it may be preferable to obtain the M.P.H. prior to an MD, as it is very difficult to pursue the M.P.H. at the same time one is in medical school or involved in a residency program or medical practice. UNF M.P.H. graduates have been highly successful in admission to Ph.D. programs around the country, for example in areas such as Health Behavior/Health Education, Epidemiology, and even Veterinary Medical Sciences.