Public Health Careers
Public health professionals perform a wide range of public health services. They assist individuals by linking them with health services, particularly in areas where health care is not accessible. They also assist communities by monitoring health status and mobilizing community partnerships to identify and investigate community health problems and hazards. Many are educators, informing and empowering people about health issues. Others work on a broader level, developing policies and plans that support individual and community health efforts, and evaluating effectiveness, accessibility, and quality of health services. Lastly, public health professionals work to maintain the integrity of our community health efforts by enforcing laws and regulations that protect our health and safety, and by ensuring a competent healthcare workforce.
For more information on public health careers, visit the Association of Schools & Programs in Public Health (ASPPH) website.
A world of opportunities awaits you upon completion of your degree from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. We’re here to help you navigate the transition, and provide resources and opportunities to help you succeed.
The University’s Career Services office is there to guide you through the process of career development from your first questions to your last. Drop-in hours: Monday-Friday 12:00-4:00pm. Career Services is located in Goodell 511.
Sign up for Career Connect to search UMass’ internship and job database.
Places to look for a Public health internship or job
- Public Health Newsletters, which are sent to your UMass email on a weekly basis.
- Check the SPHHS Workforce Development page for internships, volunteer experiences, and other job opportunities. The site is updated frequently – stop back often!
- APHA Website - Scroll down to “Public Health Career Mart.” No membership necessary.
- Career Connect and Career Services
- LinkedIn - Create your own LinkedIn account, join public health groups, grow your network.
- Idealist - Find volunteer opportunities, nonprofit jobs, and internships focused on social change.
- SOPHAS Connect - Find jobs and internships in health education and promotion
- Find your own! Networking is very important. Your hometown, parents, friends of the family, local hospitals, public health departments, and social service organizations are all good sources for internship sites as well as informational interviews and career “shadowing” experiences. Many people are interested in mentoring and supporting young people in the field. It is important to make personal connections.
- For an extensive list of other public health job and internship resources, see the Careers in Public Health handout in the far right download column.
Opportunities Post Graduation
There are many career paths available to Public Health graduates. Check out the "World Services Organizations" handout (available in the Downloads section of this page) for information on programs around the world. For helpful tips and suggestions, read our "Things to Do After Graduation" guide (available in the Downloads section of this page).
Exploring Advance Public Health Degrees
Begin exploring the options early. Visit the following websites for advice about the application process and different degree programs:
- ASPPH - Visit ASPPH for an overview of public health degrees and common areas of study.
- Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH) - Visit for a list of ASPPH CEPH-accredited schools by state.
- SOPHAS - The Centralized Application Service for Public Health.
- Accreditation Matters - Learn about why accreditation matters.
- Reasons to Consider a Glide Year - Read about why you should consider taking a gap year for applying to a graduate program.
- Healthcare Careers - Compare occupations in the health field by reading job descriptions, comparing salaries, and identifying academic requirements.
- ExploreHealthCareers.org - Read an overview of various public health programs.
- Public Health Online - Learn about different graduate programs in public health and salaries.
- Certified in Public Health (CPH) - The CPH credential ensures mastery in the competencies of the public health field. The CPH credentialing process is voluntary and includes the CPH exam and subsequent recertification process.