Job Options and Career Info for Community Health Majors

Dec 14, 2019

What Can You Do With a Community Health Degree?

Community health is a subfield of public health that focuses on educating individuals and communities about various health topics with the aim of increasing overall wellness and helping prevent the spread of illness, disease, and injury. Students with a background in community health understand the science and community factors involved in public health and can focus their efforts in areas like individual and community health, environmental or occupational health, or disease prevention and management. Read on to learn about some of the specific job titles those with a community health degree may hold.

Community Health Degree Jobs

Graduates with a community health degree can pursue careers in various areas of public health, including education, wellness/fitness, human services, research and policy, and healthcare. Whether the position is more research-focused, education-focused, or even administrative/business-focused, all of these careers strive to improve overall community health. For example, some students may work to become a healthcare administrator and oversee community health programs, while others work to become a health inspector to ensure public places are meeting standards to keep communities safe. Some specific job titles that graduates with a community health degree may pursue include:

  • Wellness coordinator
  • Community health advisor
  • Health educator
  • Health coach
  • Healthcare analyst
  • Community health worker
  • Community outreach specialist
  • Program analyst

What is a Community Health Major?

There are two main types of community health majors. Both are usually a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree, but one is a general community health major with a public health focus, while the other is a community health major focused on education. General BS degree programs in community health are usually offered through schools' public health departments and may be available in full- or -part-time formats. Some of these programs may offer different areas of concentration, such as public health, healthcare business, human services, or women's health. Some of these programs may also include hands-on learning through field experiences. Students in these programs may take courses in topics like:

  • Epidemiology
  • Community-based research
  • Community health
  • Grant writing
  • Community engagement
  • Social policy

BS degree programs in community health education may be offered through education departments and may be available in online formats. These degree programs may also offer hands-on learning through internship experiences and may help students prepare for the Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) credential. Course topics for these majors may include:

  • Community health education
  • Program planning
  • Program evaluation
  • Program administration
  • Advocacy
  • Health behavior

Public Health Salary

Earning a degree in community health results in a similar salary to that of graduates with a degree in public health. PayScale.com reported that graduates with a Bachelor of Science (BS/BSc) in Public Health made an average annual salary of $52,000 in 2019. The website also reported that graduates with a BS/BSc in Community Health made an average salary of $53,000 for 2019, and those with a BS/BSc in Community Health Education had an average salary of $51,000.

However, it is important to note that salary varies based on a number of different factors, including specific job title, employer, location, and work experience. For example, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that health educators made an average annual salary of $59,660 in 2018, while community health workers made an average salary of $43,480 the same year.

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