MPH in Public Health

Career Options

Graduates of the Muskie School are working in diverse roles in the health services and public health fields in Maine and throughout the country. Our students and graduates have more than 40 different job titles, from Chief Executive Officer to Director of Research. They are health leaders, informing policy and practice, managing health and public health organizations, working to improve our population’s health. Whether you want to advance within your current career or begin a new career path, the MPH program will prepare you with the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed.

Get to know Muskie alumnus Corey Fravert

Master of Public Health (MPH)

Healthy weight, chronic disease, health system performance and costs, access to health care, environmental threats, health disparities – these are some of the pressing public health problems facing Maine and the nation. Through our nationally-recognized academic and research programs, the Muskie School of Public Service is dedicated to improving health and health systems.

The Master of Public Health (MPH) degree prepares students with the practical knowledge and skills to address today’s complex population health and health services needs. Multi-disciplinary in nature, the MPH program delivers a broad population health and health systems perspective, with a nationally accredited specialization in Health Management. The program offers hands-on field experience opportunities in a wide variety of public health and healthcare organizations in Maine and beyond including state and local health departments, primary care and multi-specialty physician practices, hospitals, and health and health-related organizations. Graduates work in the public and private sectors to apply evidence-based practices and state-of-the-art knowledge and skills to improve population health.

The MPH program offers many opportunities for experiential learning.  Through paid graduate and research assistantships with nationally recognized faculty and staff, many students engage in projects addressing public health, health service, and health policy problems critical to improving public health and health systems.  Faculty and alumni offer strong connections with the practice community, creating opportunities for field placements, capstone projects, and career networking.

Click on the "Learn More" tab below to discover the benefits of studying the dynamic field of public health, to explore ways to advance your career through a Muskie degree, and to meet our program faculty, students, and alumni.


For More Information

For more information about the Public Health program, please e-mail Elise Bolda, program chair at eliseb@usm.maine.edu or (207) 780-4847.

 

The Master of Public Health (MPH) a competency-based curriculum that provides a foundation of knowledge and the opportunity to develop core skills for effective performance in public health, including management and leadership positions. Coursework is characterized by both individual and team assignments designed to build competencies and to integrate learning across the curriculum. Competencies in oral and written communication are developed throughout the curriculum, along with competencies in informed decision making (e.g. epidemiology, biostatistics), and leadership and management. Students may choose to pursue a specialization in Health Management, which establishes the specific courses students are required to successfully complete. The Health Management specialization is accredited by the Commission on the Accreditation in Healthcare Management Education (CAHME) and was first accredited in 2003.

The MPH program offers full- and part-time options and a schedule conducive to career professionals with classes in the late afternoon and evening. Some courses may be streamed via the web, available via the University of Maine System’s videoconference network, or via distance through other technology.
 
Core Courses (required for all Public Health students) – 24 credits:

 
Courses required for optional Health Management specialization – 20 credits:

 
MPH Elective Courses
Students pursuing the Health Management specialization are required to select three credits from either of the elective lists below.  Students not pursuing the Health Management specialization are required to select 21 credits from the ‘Health Management specialzation’ list above or either of the elective lists below, of which a minimum of 15 credit hours must carry the MPH prefix:

 
Pre-approved elective courses from other programs:

Students are permitted to take up to six credits of elective study from advanced graduate-level course work in keeping with students’ career interests that is offered through other programs. Students are encouraged to consider courses in advanced graduate-level course work from other USM programs in Planning, Policy and Management, Geographic Information System Applications (GIS), Statistics, or Business.

Please see the USM Graduate Admissions website for information regarding program admissions.

MPH Admissions Criteria

Bachelor’s Degree

Applicants must hold a Bachelor’s degree or equivalent from an accredited college or university and provide evidence of academic achievement including a GPA of 3.0 in undergraduate units, or if the applicant has 12 or more graduate units, the GPA will be based on graduate units.  International students must submit an evaluation from an outside agency documenting they have the equivalent of a US bachelor’s degree.  The Graduate Admissions website has a list of agencies that do evaluations.

Resume or Curriculum Vitae (CV)
Applicants must submit a resume or CV that outlines professional, volunteer, and community experience. The resume or CV must include the name and location of employers, to be used in determining edibility for in-state tuition.

Statement of Purpose
Applicants must submit a personal statement of purpose (maximum of 750 words) describing why they want a degree in public health and why they are interested in this program. Applicants are encouraged to describe their motivation and any emerging current career aspirations.

GRE or MCAT Scores Applicants are required to submit Graduate Record Exam (GRE) or Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) scores. Applicants to more than one program may substitute the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) or General Management Admission Test (GMAT) tests for the GRE.

GRE/MCAT Exceptions

  • GRE or substitute test scores are not required for applicants who have a master’s or doctoral degree from an accredited U.S. institution, (or its international equivalent as documented by evaluation by an outside agency) or foreign medical graduates admitted to practice by the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG).
  • GRE or substitute test scores may be waived for applicants employed by the USM Cutler Institute.  Cutler Institute and others who feel their work experience is sufficient to warrant a waiver of the GREs should contact the chair of the MPH program directly to ask for a waiver of the standardized test score. Typically waivers are not granted to those with fewer than 8 years of professional experience.

Other Considerations

The Muskie MPH program is particularly interested in applicants who have a GPA of 3.2 or higher, applicants with international life experience, and those with paid or unpaid experience working in public health or health care delivery.

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Accelerated Degree Options

Qualified students from other USM and University of Maine System graduate degree programs, and health-related undergraduate programs, may be eligible for accelerated degree options.  For more information on accelerated degree and course transfer options please see the Graduate Program in Public Health webpages.

Undergraduate students are encouraged to explore careers in public health.  Interested students are welcomed in MPH 400-Level (advanced undergraduate) and MPH 500-level (entry graduate) courses, in accordance with the requirements of their undergraduate degree programs.  Interested non-degree undergraduate students should contact the program chair of the Master of Public Health.

Full-time MPH Students (Health Management Specialization)
Year 1, Fall Semester - 12 credits:

  • MPH 525 American Health System (3 credits)
  • MPH 545 Applied Biostatistical Analysis (3 credits)
  • MPH 575 Health Systems Organization and Management (3 credits)
  • MPH 640 Health Finance I (3 credits)

Year 1, Spring Semester - 12 credits:

  • MPH 565 Social and Behavioral Health (3 credits)
  • MPH 630 Health Planning and Marketing (3 credits)
  • MPH 645 Health Finance II (2 credits)
  • MPH 670 Quality Improvement (3 credits)

Year 1, Summer - 3 credits:

  • MPH 698 Field Experience (3 credits)

Year 2, Fall Semester - 15 credits:

  • MPH 555 Environmental Health (3 credits)
  • MPH 665 Health Economics (3 credits)
  • MPH 675 Health Information Management (3 credits)
  • MPH 699 Capstone (3 credits)
  • Elective (3 credits)

Year 2, Spring Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 535 Introduction to Epidemiologic Research (3 credits)
  • MPH 635 Health Law and Ethics (3 credits)

Full-time MPH Students
Year 1, Fall Semester - 9 credits:

  • MPH 525 American Health System (3 credits)
  • MPH 545 Applied Biostatistical Analysis (3 credits)
  • MPH 575 Health Systems Organization and Management (3 credits)

Year 1, Spring Semester - 12 credits:

  • MPH 535 Introduction to Epidemiologic Research (3 credits)
  • MPH 565 Social and Behavioral Health (3 credits)
  • Elective 1 (3 credits)
  • Elective 2 (3 credits)

Year 1, Summer - 3 credits:

  • MPH 698 Field Experience (3 credits)

Year 2, Fall Semester - 12 credits:

  • MPH 555 Environmental Health (3 credits)
  • Elective 3 (3 credits)
  • Elective 4 (3 credits)
  • Elective 5 (3 credits)

Year 2, Spring Semester - 9 credits:

  • Elective 6 (3 credits)
  • Elective 7 (3 credits)
  • MPH 699 Capstone (3 credits)

Part-time MPH Students (Health Management Specialization)
Year 1, Fall Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 525 American Health System (3 credits)
  • MPH 545 Applied Biostatistical Analysis (3 credits)

Year 1, Spring Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 565 Social and Behavioral Health (3 credits)
  • MPH 630 Health Planning and Marketing (3 credits)

Year 2, Fall Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 575 Health Systems Organization and Management (3 credits)
  • MPH 640 Health Finance I (3 credits)

Year 2, Spring Semester - 5 credits:

  • MPH 645 Health Finance II (2 credits)
  • MPH 670 Quality Improvement (3 credits)

Year 3, Fall Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 555 Environmental Health (3 credits)
  • MPH 665 Health Economics (3 credits)

Year 3, Spring Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 535 Introduction to Epidemiologic Research (3 credits)
  • MPH 6635 Health Law and Ethics (3 credits)

Year 3, Summer Semester - 3 credits:

  • MPH 698 Field Experience (3 credits)

Year 4, Fall Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 675 Health Information Management (3 credits)
  • Elective (3 credits)

Year 4, Spring Semester - 3 credits:

  • MPH 699 Capstone (3 credits)

Part-time MPH Students
Year 1, Fall Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 525 American Health System (3 credits)
  • MPH 545 Applied Biostatistical Analysis (3 credits)

Year 1, Spring Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 535 Introduction to Epidemiologic Research (3 credits)
  • MPH 565 Social and Behavioral Health (3 credits)

Year 2, Fall Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 555 Environmental Health (3 credits)
  • MPH 575 Health Systems Organization and Management (3 credits)

Year 2, Spring Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH Elective 1 (3 credits)
  • MPH Elective 2 (3 credits)

Year 3, Fall Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH Elective 3 (3 credits)
  • MPH Elective 4 (3 credits)

Year 3, Spring Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 698 Field Experience (3 credits)
  • MPH Elective 5 (3 credits)

Year 4, Fall Semester - 6 credits:

  • Elective 6 (3 credits)
  • Elective 7 (3 credits)

Year 4, Spring Semester - 3 credits:

  • MPH 699 Capstone (3 credits)

Graduate Program in Public Health: Program Statement

Read the Graduate Program in Public Health program statement (PDF) or view the statement sections individually:


Why Study Public Health at USM?

From our competency-based curriculum to our CAHME accreditation to our nationally recognized faculty, there are so many reasons to study Public Health at the Muskie School.  Learn more


Public Health Faculty

Students in the Muskie School Graduate Program in Public Health benefit from the knowledge and experience of the program's nationally recognized core, adjunct, and practice faculty.  Learn more


Career Options

Graduates of the Muskie School are working in diverse roles in the health services and public health fields in Maine and throughout the country. Our students and graduates have more than 40 different job titles from Chief Executive Officer to Director of Research.  Learn more


Employers, Partner Organizations, and Field Placements

The Public Health program offers hands-on field experience opportunities in a wide variety of public health and healthcare organizations in Maine and beyond. Our program alumni also offer a vast network throughout hospitals, state and local health departments, primary care and multi-specialty physician practices, and nonprofit health and health-related organizations.  Learn more


Program Competencies

Competencies describe activities or behaviors students should be able to demonstrate upon completion of a learning experience. Compentencies of the Public Health program include elements of communication, leadership, health policy and management, public health science, research, and theory, and informed decision-making.  Learn more


MPH Advisory Committee

The MPH Advisory Committee provides diverse perspectives, advice, and input to the Graduate Program in Public Health on its direction, priorities, and opportunities.  Learn more

New Publications

What's New?

Building Bridges Beyond the Quadrangle: The CAO and the External Community
(Book chapter by Mark Lapping in: Martin J, Samuels JE, eds. The Provost's Handbook: The Role of the Chief Academic Officer. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press; 2015:200-206.)

Health Data and Financing and Delivery System Reform: Is the Glass Half Full or Half Empty? (Issue Brief by Barbara Shaw, Andy Coburn, Kimberley Fox, Andrea Gerstenberger, and Barbara Leonard)

New Jersey's Manage by Data Program: Changing Culture and Capacity to Improve Outcomes(Report by David Lambert and Julie Atkins).

Rural Implications of Medicaid Expansion under the Affordable Care Act. (Issue Brief by Erika Ziller, Jennifer Lenardson, and Andy Coburn).

Safety of Rural Nursing Home-to-Emergency Department Transfers: Improving Communication and Patient Information Sharing across Settings. Journal for Healthcare Quality, 37(1), 55-65. (Authors: Judy Tupper, Carolyn Gray, Karen Pearson, and Andy Coburn).

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