What Jobs are Available with a Master’s in Public Health Degree?

masters in public healthEarning your master’s in public health can take up to two years or longer, which gives you plenty of time to think about your career goals and how the courses you take now can help you meet those goals. Jobs in public health refer to positions that help a larger group of people. You might choose to educate a community about a specific disease sweeping through the area, to work in a hospital or medical facility as an administrator or in other fields that let you help those in your city or state.

Healthcare Administrator

The doctors and nurses working for a medical facility need a healthcare administrator to run that facility. This position shares much in common with other types of management jobs. As an administrator, it’s your responsibility to coordinate with volunteers and professionals working for the organization. Depending on the facility, it may use one administrator to manage the entire facility or hire multiple administrators to organize and manage multiple departments in the facility. An internship in administration can help you gain more experience before you go to work.

Policy Advocate

Policy advocates believe in change, and they work hard to ensure that changes affect a large population of people. With your Master’s in Public Health, you will have a strong background in legislature and understand how laws go into affect and what the general public needs to know about those laws. Many advocates focus on one specific aspect of the medical field rather than advocating for larger or sweeping changes. An HIV advocate might encourage the government to adapt new laws that will better assist those diagnosed with HIV, while a child advocate might push the government to lower the age of consent and give teenagers more rights over their bodies.

Emergency Health Responder

If you love working in a fast paced environment and can go to work anytime of the day, consider working as an emergency health responder. Emergency health responders include doctors, nurses and those with an advanced degree. When a hospital or facility identifies an emergency situation, those responders rush to the scene and take control. They look at the overall problem and help the facility decide how to take care of the problem. You might spend weeks at a hospital on one side of the country and have a few weeks off before you receive a new assignment.

Community Health Specialist

Forbes listed Public Health as one of the top Master’s degrees available in the country. The magazine found that the median wage for those with some experience is $84,100 a year, and you can earn this much as a community health specialist. Community health specialists help those living in a specific community understand the dangers that impact their lives. These specialists will sometimes track specific diseases back to a certain person and let those surrounding that person know the danger. For example, community health specialists often deal with sexually transmitted diseases and infections spreading throughout a school or a neighborhood. In addition to researching those diseases, they also help the community understand how they can get healthy. They run open forums, hold classes for locals and create print and media campaigns to inform locals of potential problems.

The public health field includes a number of different jobs. While getting a graduate degree won’t qualify you to work as a doctor or nurse, it does qualify you to work in other fields. With a master’s in public health, you can work as a healthcare administrator, policy advocate, emergency health responder, community health specialist or in other positions.

Resource: Top 25 Master’s in Public Health Degree Programs With the Highest Acceptance Rates 2014