There has never been a better time to earn an online master of public health (MPH) degree. The online format allows you to work full time while furthering your education, and thus your career prospects. Jobs in public health continue to grow,1 and with an online MPH degree you will be well positioned for employment in an array of public health positions, whether your interests lie in grassroots public health policy work or a management position at a large public health organization.
But how do you choose the best online MPH program to meet your needs? Here are some things to consider when looking into MPH programs online:
What is the school’s reputation?
Reputation counts for a lot. A good reputation means that students can trust the quality of education they will receive. Reputation is also important to employers, who typically judge candidates partly on where they earned their degree. Students earning an online Master of Public Health degree at Creighton University benefit from the school’s excellent reputation. The MPH program is offered through the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies, within the Creighton Graduate School, which offers a wide range of highly regarded online and graduate degree programs. In its prestigious rankings, U.S. News & World Report consistently rates Creighton as the #1 Master’s degree granting university in the Midwest.
What are the school’s values?
You can learn a lot about a school by considering its mission. For example, Creighton is aligned with the Catholic, Jesuit values of social justice and service to others. The school focuses on both rural and urban communities, preparing students to lead in a wide variety of health-related fields.
What is the school’s curriculum like and is an on-campus residency required?
It’s important to look at the curriculum to determine if the courses are broad enough to give you a solid foundation but also specific enough to give you expertise in well-defined areas. Creighton’s curriculum covers a wide range of topics, from ethics and community-based participatory research to biostatistics and environmental health. Students get practical experience and also create their own capstone project.
Another big factor when looking at online MPH programs is whether the school requires an on-campus residency. If you will be juggling coursework with a full-time job, you may not be able to take time off for an on-campus residency. Creighton offers one of the few online MPH programs that does not require travel to a campus residency.
What’s the faculty’s experience?
The educators in your online MPH online degree program should be the same faculty as, or of commensurate quality with, the school’s on-site faculty. Creighton University’s online MPH program faculty members have both the academic and practical experience required to give students an outstanding academic experience that incorporates the latest tools and techniques. Faculty members have worked with some of the country’s leading public health organizations, including the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the National Association of Local Boards of Health and the National Association of EMS Educators.
Can you focus in a specific area?
If you know in advance what kind of job you want to get with your MPH degree, it’s good to attend a school that specifically prepares you for that career. Some students seek an MPH to help them attain management positions in public health organizations, for example, while others are interested in grassroots policy work. If you have a specific career goal, you should choose a program that’s tailored to that. At Creighton, students focus their studies on one of two different tracks: health policy and ethics or public health services administration. Regardless of your area of focus, an MPH degree makes you a desirable candidate for a broad range of health care careers.
Last, as part of your research into the best online MPH program for you, talk to currently enrolled students and graduates working in the field. Also contact the schools you’re interested in to learn more about their programs and what graduates have done. To find out more about Creighton’s online Master of Public Health program, call 866.717.6365 or request information online.