Master of Public Health

About the MPH

The Master of Public Health program incorporates solutions that include social, political, cultural and economic aspects of health so that action can be taken in concert with other sectors of the local, national or global community. We aim to do this by synthesizing public health core courses with these aspects demonstrating the practical use of a multi-disciplinary approach to problem solving, program development and leadership models.

The Master of Public Health degree is an exciting offering from the School of Interdisciplinary Health Programs and the College of Health and Human Services at WMU. The field of public health is growing and evolving rapidly. The MPH at WMU is designed to prepare leaders for this generalist degree, including competencies associated with:

  • Evidence-based approaches to public health
  • Public health and healthcare
  • Planning and management to promote health
  • Policy in public health
  • Leadership
  • Communication
  • Interprofessional practice
  • Systems thinking

Through our curriculum and course assignments, students will be introduced to topics and public health theories and practices so that skills will be developed so that graduates with a WMU MPH will be confident entering into their careers adding to the well-being of their community.

Public health, as envisioned by the Institute of Medicine, has three core functions: 1) to assess the status of health and the health care system; 2) to assure that programs and services that achieve and maintain health are in place; and, 3) to lead the development of public policy on health issues. WMU’s MPH graduates need to be equipped to lead their communities in performing these functions.

The degree is offered in an online and hybrid format, with two face-to-face weekend meetings each fall and spring semester at the WMU Grand Rapids Beltline location.

Students participate in:

  • Real world applications
  • Applied practice experiences throughout the curriculum
  • Integrated learning experience
  • Professional development opportunities

Admission

The minimum requirements for admission to the Master of Public Health at WMU are listed below. Achievement of these minimum standards does not guarantee acceptance.

  1. Bachelor's degree from an accredited institution, indicated on an official transcript.
  2. One official transcript from each institution attended since high school.
  3. An overall grade point average of at least 3.0 in the last two years of undergraduate work.
  4. Undergraduate courses in Biology/Anatomy & Physiology, Statistics, Psychology/Behavior Change and Communication are strongly recommended.
  5. Up-to-date resume or curriculum vitae.
  6. Three (3) professional references - one from an individual who can attest to academic potential, at least one from a supervisor who can attest to work skills and one from an individual in public health or health related fields.
  7. A Personal Statement that includes:
    •  Academic Statement: Please provide a concise academic statement of your plans for graduate study, your career goals and how WMU's graduate program will help you meet your career and educational objectives.
    •  Why are you interested in WMU's MPH program? Why have you chosen a hybrid program? How do you plan to succeed in a predominantly online environment?
    •  What roles and/or experiences have you had in public health that has sparked your interest in pursuing an MPH?
    •  What are your expectations for a future career in public health (highlighting your emphasis area of interest)?
    •  Evidence that your employment, academic, or volunteer background is related to public health in a governmental, nonprofit or health-care organizational setting.

How do I get started?

Contact Mark Kelley at mark.kelley@wmich.edu or Nancy Kibler at nancy.kibler@wmich.edu for more information or for an appointment to discuss the program.