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Health Education and Promotion: MPH

Health Education and Promotion

The Health Education and Promotion (HEP) Master of Public Health (MPH) program at USU trains students to be leaders in the field of Public Health. HEP MPH graduates are well prepared for careers in health care settings, academic institutions, local, state, and federal health agencies, private industry, and non-profit organizations. Students receive training in program planning and evaluation, social determinates of health, health communication, quantitative and qualitative public health methods, health behavior, health policy, leadership, and systems thinking.

The Health Education and Promotion MPH Degree emphasizes the behavioral, social and cultural factors related to individual and population health and health disparities over the life span. Learn to promote and sustain healthy environments and healthy lives for individuals and populations.


Students who complete a MPH degree in Health Education and Promotion can seek out diverse positions in public health organizations that offer opportunities for leadership roles, professional development, and higher pay and benefits. These organizations include:

  • Local, state, and federal health agencies
  • Colleges and universities
  • Health care organizations
  • Utah Department of Workforce Services
  • Community social service organizations
  • International health programs and aid agencies

Potential positions for MPH graduates include:

  • Epidemiologist/Statistician
  • Disaster and emergency specialist
  • Medical and health services manager
  • Public health educator
  • Public health nurse
  • Medical social worker

Admissions Requirements

  • Complete the online application
  • Pay the $55 application fee
  • Score at or above the 40th percentile on the GRE or MAT
  • Have a 3.0 or higher GPA on your last 60 semester or 90 quarter credits
  • Provide transcripts of all college/university credits
  • Provide three contacts for letters of recommendation
  • Include a statement of purpose in your online application
  • Provide three contacts for letters of recommendation (two must be from faculty)

Master's Degree Plan Option(s)

The HEP MPH requires a minimum of 42-45 credit hours including 24-27 credits of public health foundational competency courses and 18 population health concentration competency courses. Students have an option of a thesis (Plan B) or a practicum (professional degree) based applied learning experience to demonstrate mastery of public health concepts. All students will participate in an interprofessional education experience working win multidisciplinary teams to solve a public health problem.

Plan B option: Students collect original data and prepares a paper, similar to a research manuscript for publication in a scholarly journal and completes 3 credits of thesis research. The paper developed should enhance knowledge in the discipline and demonstrate a student has obtained select public health competencies. Students will be expected to work with a public health mentor as well as their graduate committee on the development and implementation of the research proposal for the Plan B paper.

Professional degree: A master's degree non-thesis option is available. Students enrolled in the practicum course must complete a supervised field or professional experience that takes place at the end of the degree. This will take place through both an applied learning experience and an integrated learning experience were students must demonstrate mastery of select public health competencies upon completion of the practicum. Students must form a graduate committee to assist in the selection of a placement site and to evaluate the learning outcomes once the practicum is completed.


Debasree DasGupta, PhD, George Mason University
Assistant Professor
Area: Population Health
Office: HPER 143
Phone: (435) 797-0133
Email: debasree.dasGupta@usu.edu


Julie Gast, PhD, Southern Illinois University
Professor of Health Education and Promotion, MPH Director
Area: Community health
Office: HPER 138
Phone: (435) 797-1490
Email: julie.gast@usu.edu


Steve Hawks, PhD, Brigham Young University
Professor
Area: Health Education and Promotion
Office: USU Moab, 115B
Phone: (435) 259-7432
Email: steve.hawks@usu.edu


Maya Miyairi, PhD, University of Utah
Assistant Professor
Area: Body image and health behavior
Office: Brigham City Campus
Phone: (435) 919-1303
Email: maya.miyairi@usu.edu


Travis Peterson, PhD, Brigham Young University
Associate Professor
Area: Health Education and Promotion
Office: HPER 136
Phone: (435) 797-9324
Email: travis.peterson@usu.edu


Phillip Waite, PhD, University of Utah
Associate Professor
Area: Community health
Office: HPER 140
Phone: (435) 797-7217
Email: phillip.waite@usu.edu


Sandra Sulzer, PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Assistant Professor
Area: Community and Medical Sociology
Phone: (435) 797-2925
Email: sandra.sulzer@usu.edu


Professional Organizations, Honor Societies, and Clubs

American School Health Association: ASHA is a multidisciplinary organization of administrators, counselors, health educators, physical educators, psychologists, school health coordinators, school nurses, school physicians, and social workers. Its mission is to build the capacity of its members to plan, develop, coordinate, implement, evaluate, and advocate for effective school health strategies that contribute to optimal health and academic outcomes for all children and youth.

American Public Health Association: The American Public Health Association is the oldest and most diverse organization of public health professionals in the world and has been working to improve public health since 1872. The Association aims to protect all Americans, their families and their communities from preventable, serious health threats and strives to assure community-based health promotion and disease prevention activities and preventive health services are universally accessible in the United States. APHA represents a broad array of health professionals and others who care about their own health and the health of their communities.

Society for Public Health Educators: SOPHE is a 501 (c)(3) professional organization founded in 1950 to provide global leadership to the profession of health education and health promotion and to promote the health of all people by: stimulating research on the theory and practice of health education; supporting high quality performance standards for the practice of health education and health promotion; advocating policy and legislation affecting health education and health promotion; and developing and promoting standards for professional preparation of health education professionals. SOPHE is the only independent professional organization devoted exclusively to health education and health promotion across all settings.

Get Healthy Utah: The mission of Get Healthy Utah is to create a culture of health through encouraging and facilitating active lifestyles and healthy eating.

Utah Public Health Association: UPHA is a leader in public health advocacy, improving public health practice and providing professional development opportunities for members and the public health community.

Utah Chapter of Society of Public Health Educators: The mission of USOPHE is the improve the health of Utahns by promoting the advancement of the health education profession and the employment of health educators in the public and private sector.

Utah Worksite Wellness Council: The Utah Worksite Wellness Council is a partnership of organizations with the singular purpose of learning how to build effective worksite wellness programs and methods that lead to sustainable lifestyle change for employees. So many employers are working hard to improve the health and well-being of their employees and their organizations, but are doing so in isolation. UWWC is an opportunity for employers to come together, learn from each other, share experiences, and figure out what works in their industries. UWWC is open to all businesses interested in concrete solutions to improve the health of their employees and enhance the performance of their organizations.


Department:

Kinesiology and Health Science Department

College:

Emma Eccles Jones College of Education & Human Services

Academic Advising

Julie Gast
Professor of Health Education and Promotion, MPH Director
Office: HPER 138
Phone: (435) 797-1490
Email: julie.gast@usu.edu


Melissa Johnson
KHS Graduate Coordinator
Office: HPER 122
Phone: (435) 797-1495
Email: melissa.johnson@usu.edu



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