MPH Options at Oregon State

Your future is out there.
It starts here.

An MPH from Oregon State University will provide you with the theoretical foundations, applied public health techniques and professional skills you need to achieve your public health career goals.

We’ll help you get to where you want to go. It’s not just something we say - between the assistance of a faculty advisor and student support team, it’s a value we practice.



Turn numbers into answers.

If you enjoy applying math to real-world problems, working across a variety of disciplines, finding patterns in data and contributing to wide-ranging public health research, biostatistics is for you.

This growing field, which is the basis of all public health and medical research, uses statistics to understand public health and health care problems.

As a student, you will learn to collect, organize and analyze data, then recommend decisions based on that analysis.

You’ll be able to find work in health service organizations, academia, CDC and WHO field programs, research institutions, consulting firms, pharmaceutical companies and more.

Sample careers:

  • Biostatistician
  • Consultant
  • Policy research analyst
  • Researcher
“I enjoy finding patterns in data and picking up clues that help us understand biological processes that we can only see using statistics.”
Professor Adam Branscum, Ph.D.

Environmental and Occupational Health

How can we improve the quality of life in a given environment?

Explore the impact of environmental and occupational hazards on human health and society, and develop effective interventions to control and prevent exposure to hazards.

As an applied program, our faculty conduct novel interdisciplinary research. The foundation of our program is exposure assessment, toxicology, risk characterization and management strategies.

Our strength is our interdisciplinary approach in solving domestic and international problems in occupational health and safety, and environmental health.

Our graduates work in a variety of settings around the world – from private industries in Oregon to rural health care clinics in Bangladesh. You could land employment in settings such as NGOs, health departments, federal or state agencies, academia and private companies.

Sample careers:

  • Chemical compliance toxicologist
  • Environmental consultant
  • Environmental health and safety coordinator
  • Health and safety director
  • Public health officer
“The Environmental and Occupational Health Program is unique because of the small class sizes, which allowed us great access to professors. Also, the environment allowed our cohort to become very close, and I still have contacts I made in school whom I talk to regularly.”
Brittany Heller, MPH ’16


When the answer is, “We don’t know,” epidemiologists get to work.

Epidemiologists seek to reduce risk by uncovering clues about what causes disease and injury so they can better detect, plan for and prevent them – here and across the globe.

Our faculty are epidemiological experts who study how a variety of factors affect human health, including climate change, disease prevention and management, disaster preparedness, foodborne outbreaks, healthy aging, HIV, maternity care, and pollutants at work, at home and in the environment.

You’ll learn how to use your skills in applied settings in health departments, non-governmental agencies or CDC or WHO field programs. You’ll also be prepared for doctoral training in epidemiology or other professional training.

Sample careers:

  • Data scientist
  • Epidemiologist
  • Epidemiological fellow
  • Health data analyst
  • Research associate
“The Oregon State MPH has a little bit of something for everyone — from those seeking mid-career training, to young academics growing their research careers and beyond. The diversity in life and career experiences within my cohort expanded my network to include folks outside of my immediate work world. I still value those relationships today.”
Molly Elliott, MPH '16

Global Health

Health is a human right.

You yearn for work that makes a difference. You don’t want to simply provide resources – you want to empower people, because you understand that health sets the foundation for individuals to live their best lives possible.

Medically vulnerable people face infectious, tropical, chronic and non-infectious disease, and many other threats to their health. Age-related illness, mental health issues and health-related consequences from violence and war can be everyday realities.

Global public health professionals take on communities’ most pressing health challenges, work hand in hand with underrepresented populations and strive to alleviate health disparities around the world.

Data-driven research and educational outreach are hallmarks of global health. You could work in disaster relief organizations, with immigrant and refugee health organizations, in research and academic institutions or government agencies.

Sample careers:

  • Community program manager
  • Program consultant
  • Public health advisor
  • Public health associate
  • Health policy specialist
  • Project officer
“With a background in Public Health-Global Health, I have learned to think critically when implementing and evaluating programs. As a result, my approach to health is more holistic and comprehensive. The amazing faculty at Oregon State are supportive, available and inclusive. I am incredibly grateful for their professional guidance and mentorship.”

Caryn Chalmers, MPH ’18
University of California Davis MIND Institute

Health Promotion and Health Behavior

Empower behavior change to promote health.

Are you drawn to helping others and getting to the root of problems to find viable solutions?

Health promotion and health behavior specialists work to understand the social and behavioral influences at play in communities, especially those with health disparities.

They dig deep to get at the root of issues. Whether it’s looking at living conditions or behaviors, these professionals use scientific evaluation to create real solutions to communities’ most pressing health challenges.

Jobs in this field focus on evaluating factors that impact health so individuals, groups and communities can make changes to their personal health and working and living conditions.

You could find work in health agencies, non-profit organizations, research institutions, academia, consulting agencies and more.

Sample careers:

  • Community health worker
  • Prevention system manager
  • Project director
  • Health promotion specialist
  • Research coordinator
“I entered the program knowing I was drawn to the field of public health, but unsure of what kind of job it would lead me to. The program showed me so many different ways to have a public health career and got me motivated to get out into the workforce. I now work within the field of aging and develop programs that allow older adults to age with good health and a high quality of life.”

Lauren Fontanarosa, MPH ’10

Health Systems and Policy

Create change in policy and health care.

You want to effect real change in people’s lives, and you know that often begins upstream. To the source, in fact, where the policies, rules and laws are created that make the biggest difference in the health and well-being of the greatest number of people. To do that, you need well-rounded training in health systems and policy.

You’ll learn analytic tools for understanding the complex effects policy has on health, health care markets and the community, as well as tools for effectively implementing policy changes.

You’ll benefit from advanced critical thinking skills and in-depth expertise in analytic methods that are relevant for public health policy, health systems innovation and population change.

You may decide to assume a leadership position in a health care or insurance organization, a not-for-profit, a policy organization, government agency, legislature or academia.

Sample careers:

  • Advocacy specialist
  • Director of care management
  • Health operations analyst
  • Health policy analyst
  • Research analyst
"I found myself working long hours in a position that didn’t let me make process changes when they were gravely needed. I didn’t know what to do, but I talked to an advisor at Oregon State and given my veterinary medicine background, public health was a natural transition. The MPH program really opened my eyes to how the human experience can be."

April Gillette, MPH '16
Oregon Health Authority

Physical Activity

Activity is vital to the health of individuals, but what about communities?

Do you enjoy physical activity and researching, pursuing and promoting healthy lifestyles?

If so, an MPH in physical activity will prepare you for a variety of careers that include developing, implementing and evaluating community-based programs designed to promote physically active lifestyles.

You may find work in state, local and federal health agencies, state and local health departments, prevention research centers, worksites, schools, and professional, commercial or nonprofit organizations.

Sample careers:

  • Corporate wellness consultant
  • Community health coordinator
  • Physical activity specialist
  • Program director
  • Research manager
“If we can take the focus off of individuals and stop telling them ‘you need to move more and eat better’ and instead focus on creating environments that make the healthy food choice, or the active option easy and ultimately, the default, we may be able to stem the tide of obesity.”

Professor Kathy Gunter, Ph.D.

MPH Online

Thrive as a public health professional.

The online Master of Public Health – Public Health Practice will provide you with the skills, knowledge and credentials to prepare you to be a thriving public health professional and to take on leadership roles informing public health action.

From health policy to health promotion, and epidemiology to health systems, you'll acquire the skills needed to take on the task of improving the population’s health by learning to manage resources and influence health policy and practice at the local, state, national and international level.

An online MPH in public health practice can lead you to jobs at the local, state, national, and international levels aimed at preventing disease and injury and improving health at the population level.

Sample careers:

  • Community program manager
  • Chief operations officer
  • Health care consultant
  • Medical office manager
  • Policy analyst
  • Project director for prevention programming
  • Research associate
“The goal is to create a community of students online so they’re not just learning the material in isolation, but developing connections that will benefit them professionally. We’re very intentional in creating a cohort model that gives them opportunities for networking and developing their skills in a peer-to-peer way.”

Associate Professor Sue Carozza, Ph.D.

Take the First Step