Why Study Public Health?

Why Is Public Health Important?

The field of public health plays a critical role in the promotion of health, prevention of disease, and empowerment of individuals to manage illness and disabilities. Every scientific finding, awareness campaign, and new policy has the potential to positively impact the lives of millions of people around the world. A unique blend of research, inquiry, and action, public health brings together people from across disciplines, backgrounds, and perspectives to discover the root causes of health problems and develop long-lasting, innovative solutions that improve everyone’s quality of life.

While the field of medicine traditionally aims to treat diseases and injuries, public health aims to proactively prevent them and keep populations healthy. In doing so, public health practitioners discover and share health interventions that ensure health and equity now and far into the future.    

What Will You Learn in a Public Health Degree Program?

In a public health degree program, you’ll learn how the conditions in the places where people live, learn, work, grow, and play affect their health outcomes. You’ll learn how public health professionals collaborate to uncover these conditions and build interventions that address them. Depending on your interests and passions, your coursework in Michigan Public Health’s six departments can explore the science behind the spread and control of disease, environmental impacts on human health, how policy and data can transform the health of populations, and the ways diet and nutrition shape our lives and our health. 

What Can You Do with a Public Health Degree?

A public health degree gives you the professional foundation and transferable skills you need to understand and work on a wide range of issues in a variety of industries and fields, including issues you see in the news every day, from COVID-19 to health care policy, firearm safety, and racism. Those with public health degrees keep communities healthy, protect workers, prevent and address pandemics, pursue social justice, drive public policy, spearhead disaster relief, ensure access to healthcare, and so much more. Public health professionals are at the forefront of research, practice, and service in nonprofits, community organizations, higher education, government, private industry, and health care. Discover jobs and careers in public health by learning more about our alumni.

Why Michigan Public Health?

As the #5-ranked school of public health in the US, we educate and train tomorrow’s public health leaders. Michigan Public Health students prepare to pursue positive, transformative change through engaging learning opportunities with top faculty, access to innovative laboratory and field settings, and community-based and entrepreneurial training. Our graduates join a community of 16,000 alumni and enter the world prepared to meet the challenges of a shifting landscape and anticipate where new challenges might arise.

What our students say about why they chose public health 


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