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In the public health field, there are several exciting career paths for one to explore! This resource guide can be used as a general starting point to explore career options, identify internship opportunities, learn about federal employment information, and discover relevant professional organizations in the public health field.
To identify what education or training is typical, use the O*Net hyperlinks below and click on “Job Zone.”
As with all majors, the education you receive serves as a foundation of knowledge that prepares you for what you may face in the professional world. The career field you chose may require additional education or experience.
Gaining real-life experience is an ideal way to start a new career. This website has an extensive list of internships and fellowships. Browse through them; the internships are organized by interest and by federal program.
There are government-organized internship programs which provide students or recent graduates the opportunity to gain real-life experience. Many require students to maintain either a half-time or full-time student status. The best ways to identify potential opportunities such as these is to contact branch offices directly, to search USAJobs.gov, or to look at the agencies’ career portals. Keep in mind that these positions are not always posted online, so direct contact with the agency is key.
The Pathways Program is a federal initiative that offers internship programs for current students and training and career development opportunities for recent graduates. Recent graduates must apply within two years of degree or certificate completion (except for veterans, due to their military service obligation, will have up to six years to apply).The internship program for current students replaces the former Student Career Experience Program (SCEP) and Student Temporary Employment Program (STEP).
PMF is designed to attract to federal service outstanding men and women from a wide variety of academic disciplines who have a clear interest in, and commitment to, a career in the analysis and management of public policies and programs. To be eligible for nomination, an individual must be a graduate student completing or expected to complete, during the current academic year, an advanced degree from a qualifying college or university.
WRP is coordinated by the Office of Disability Employment Policy and the U.S. Department of Defense, and aims to provide summer work experience, and in some cases full-time employment, to college students with disabilities. The program develops partnerships with other federal agencies, each of whom makes a commitment to provide summer jobs and a staff recruiter. Each year, recruiters interview about 1,500 students with disabilities at college and university campuses across the nation, and develop a database listing the qualifications of each student.
There are several government agencies and organizations that seek candidates with degrees in public health. The below list provides a few example places one might find employment using their degree.
While many of the major job search engines, the list below is specific to the public health field.
Professional organizations provide job seekers with an excellent opportunity to network with fellow practitioners in their field of study and can assist in staying up-to-date on the newest technology, tools, and best practices. Becoming involved with professional organizations can also help to increase your knowledge in the field, as these organizations typically offer trainings and conferences for members. Additional opportunities may then arise to serve on a committee, have an article published, or even present at a conference.
Below are a few professional organizations within the public health field that you may be interested in.
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