Prospective public health workers may also consider enrolling in a graduate diploma program, which provides graduate-level specialization to individuals who have already completed a bachelor's degree. Successful graduates possess a high degree of professionalism, strong communication skills, leadership ability, and a sense of public service. These programs may be available online. Program length varies, but is relatively short and consists of just a few classes. Prerequisites include a master's degree, letters of recommendation, work experience, and internships.
Public Health Certification
Students in graduate-level certificate or diploma programs may delve into the complex attributes of good health, including the environmental, social, individual, and biological factors. Given the multidisciplinary nature of the public health field, program curriculum may also include advocacy, social sustainability, and public policy. Courses may include:
- Promoting health and wellness
- Public speaking
- Public health practice
- Community health
- Environmental health
Popular Career Options
Public health is a diverse field that includes specialization in areas such as maternal and child health, biostatistics, nutrition, leadership, and environmental sciences. Many public health workers deal with developing policy, promoting community wellness, education, research, and management. Career options for those with a graduate-level certificate or diploma include:
- Public health social worker
- Health educator
- Health services manager
- Community wellness administrator
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
Social workers in the healthcare field earned a median annual salary of $52,380 as of May 2015, according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS, www.bls.gov). Job openings for social workers in general were expected to increase by 12% from 2014-2024, which is a faster-than-average rate. Health educators should also see many job opportunities in the 2014-2024 decade: the BLS projected job growth of 12% in this field. Health educators earned a median of $51,960 as of 2015. As a third option, health services managers earned a median salary of $94,500 in 2015, per the BLS. Job growth in the health services management field was expected to be 17% from 2014-2024.
Some universities and colleges may apply credits from a graduate diploma program toward the completion of a graduate degree in public health. Options include the Master of Public Health, Master of Science in Public Health, Doctor of Public Health, and Master of Health Services Administration.
Students who earn a certificate in public health will enter a career field growing much faster than the national average, with the number of jobs projected to grow by 12%-17% depending on the position. Earning a graduate degree in public health will make students' career prospects even more marketable.