Master of Public Health (MPH) Degree in Texas

Get to Know Public Health in Texas

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Welcome to the Texas master’s degree in public health page. Don’t be fooled that masters education is the only topic on this page. Information is also provided about bachelor education paths and certification and licensure routes in public health . Texas has much need for well-trained public health professionals. And there is no shortage of finding a public health positions in one of the 254 counties in Texas; public health careers are here to stay. Texas along with all other states and nations have now experienced the COVID pandemic. Now more than ever the importance public health is apparent for the well-being of each and every community throughout the state. We will show a variety of paths you may take to earn an education or further career ambitions. As we have entered 2020 and beyond there are a variety of CEPH accredited programs located in other states, yet can accessed through online programs from anywhere in Texas. If that is the case, simply do your research and request information from a school of interest. Or, if you want to find a local campus that is an option too. Everything comes down to personal preference.


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The ability to influence the health and wellness of your city and protect the people who live there is among the most rewarding and admiral career choices. Studying towards those choices might seem daunting at first, but pursuing a Masters in Public Health in Texas comes with a wealth of career opportunities.

Earning Your Master of Public Health (MPH) in Texas

The customizable multidisciplinary degree allows students to gain experience and opportunities in program design and evaluation, policy development, public health marketing and communication, epidemiology and more. The degree is not just ideal for any public health professional who’s looking to move up in their career, but also for professionals who come from a different bachelor’s-educated profession and are looking to change careers. With online part-time courses as an option and increasing funding in the sector, the MPH program is designed to cater to dedicated working professionals.

The Master of Public Health (MPH) degree is designed to advance the careers of public health professionals by honing their skills and focusing them towards the core issues of the field.

Online and part time MPH programs help to provide a degree of flexibility that can help even the busiest working students succeed. Fast track options have even helped some students to receive their degrees after only one year.

Accelerated One-Year and Part-Time Options

The accelerated one-year option puts students on the fast track to obtaining their master’s degree in public health in as little as 12 months. The one-year option utilizes the same core curriculum as traditional MPH programs. However, the one-year option follows a faster paced and more aggressive schedule.

The part-time option offers students a great deal of flexibility in achieving their master’s in public health. As a matter of fact, many schools allow students a maximum of four years to complete the MPH program on a part-time basis.

What is CEPH Accreditation?

To offer accredited public health programs, schools follow the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH) recommendations and guidelines. The independent agency is recognized by the United States Department of Education and many public health jobs require a CEPH-accredited program. When looking for a program, whether it’s on campus or online, make sure to check that it is CEPH-accredited.

Q: What’s the Difference Between Bachelor Degree & Master Degree for Public Health?

The programs for Bachelor Degrees in Public Health are limited and students often study a different course in their undergraduate education. These courses include health sciences, environmental health, social work, and healthcare administration. There are a few universities that offer undergraduate public health courses, these include Texas A&M Health Science Center and The University of Texas at Austin. The Bachelors in Public Health focuses on Prevention, Promotion, Protection, and Population-based care.

The Master Degree in public health is available at a lot more institutions and accepts students from most Bachelor backgrounds. Work experience is required and the course is more centralized with students able to choose majors on policy and community health, health promotion and behavioral sciences and management, epidemiology, and biostatistics. There are over 50 graduate level courses to choose from and a variety of dual degrees.

Q: Where do Public Health Professionals Work in Texas?

Where you work will largely depend on your major and area of specialty. It can be anywhere from universities, insurance companies, and government agencies to laboratories, communities, hospitals, and the private sector.

Step One: Know the Basics

Because there are limited Bachelor of Public Health programs available, MPH programs accept any bachelor’s degree from an accredited 4-year university. THE MPH program often attracts graduates from the nutrition, healthcare, health administration, and education fields. Anyone with experience and interest in the field is welcome to apply.

Academic Overview

The standards for Master of Public Health programs are set by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH). CEPH uses five core competency models that have been developed by the Association of Schools of Public Health (ASPH). These competency models are:

  • Biostatistics
  • Environmental Health Sciences
  • Epidemiology
  • Health Policy Management
  • Social and Behavioral Sciences

In addition to these five models, the APH also developed seven interdisciplinary focus areas. The focus areas are:

  • Communication and informatics
  • Diversity and culture
  • Leadership
  • Professionalism
  • Program planning
  • Public health biology
  • Systems thinking

Admission Requirements

Admission requirements for master’s programs will differ from program to program and universities will usually list their specific requirements. However, generally speaking, the list below is a standard set of requirements for graduate-level MPH programs:

  • Submission of GRE, LSAT, GMAT, or MCAT
  • Submission of official transcripts from all other undergraduate and graduate institutions
  • Submission of a 500-1000-word purpose essay
  • Resume
  • Two letters of recommendation

Step Two: Choosing a Texas Public Health School

With over 20 CEPH-accredited MPH programs in Texas, a number of which have both online and on-campus options, anyone looking to further their health career in Texas has a wealth of options. There are a range of specialties from universities such as Texas A&M, the University of Texas Health Center at Houston, Baylor University, and the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. All of these specialties are accredited by the CEPH.

Getting Your MPH Online in Texas

There are multiple schools offering accredited online programs in Texas. Online colleges offer courses that will suit professionals who have experience as public health workers and are looking to expand their knowledge. These programs allow you to go at a pace that suits you and if you prefer combination online and on-campus courses, then that’s available too.

The fear with online programs is that video lectures and distance learning – especially with something as practical as public health – doesn’t provide enough structure and support. However, the MPH distance learning courses integrate research projects, lab experimentation and useful online discussions to provide a well-rounded education. The ability to choose a specialization narrows your focus and allows you to delve into an area that you may enjoy and advance your career.

Step Three: Choosing a Public Health Specialization:

The diversity of the MPH programs allows individuals to customize their career goals and exercise their knowledge in a wide range of career opportunities. The programs are designed to prepare you for any area of public health. Below are a few specializations that display the various careers paths that can be followed with your MPH degree. While these aren’t universal or guaranteed, it gives you a good idea of your potential future.

Health Communication

Appropriate for professionals interested in learning how to strategically use communication and marketing to advance public health objectives. Programs in Texas like the Glenda Dawson Donate Life – Texas Registry initiative require strong leadership and communication skills in order to be effective in reaching a broad demographic of Texas residents.

Courses within this specialization may include:

  • Leadership Seminar
  • Global Health Communication Interventions
  • Preventing Health Disparities
  • Social Marketing
  • Marketing and Research for Public Health
  • Credits: 10-15

Health Policy

Appropriate for professionals interested in advocating for changes to health policy in the U.S. and other countries. The Maternal Mortality and Morbidity Task Force, which was created to develop and influence policy that would help support the health of pregnant woman and neonates, and the community grant program for mental health services are examples of the impact that comprehensive and effective health policies can have on the health care system.

Courses within this specialization may include:

  • Monitoring and Evaluation of Sexual and Reproductive Health Programs in Low- and Middle-Income Countries
  • Qualitative Research Methods in Public Health
  • Public Health and Law
  • Global Health Diplomacy
  • Leadership Seminar
  • Law, Medicine and Ethics
  • Credits: 10-15

Program Planning and Evaluation

Appropriate for professionals interested in developing goals and objectives for public health initiatives, evaluating health outcomes, and generating new ways to make public health programs more effective. A sampling of public health programs in Texas includes the Asthma Control Program, Breast and Cervical Cancer Services Program, Safe Riders Traffic Safety Program, and the Children with Special Health Care Needs Services Program.

Courses within this specialization may include:

  • Monitoring and Evaluation of Sexual and Reproductive Health Programs in Low- and Middle-Income Countries
  • Researching Violence Against Women and Girls
  • Qualitative Research Methods in Public Health
  • Social Marketing
  • Marketing Research for Public Health
  • Credits: 10-15

Global Health

Appropriate for professionals interested in confronting global health issues and collaborating with other entities in a multidisciplinary approach to promote health and prevent disease both in the United States and abroad. Global health programs include Roll Back Malaria and the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization.

Courses within this specialization may include:

  • Monitoring and Evaluation of Sexual and Reproductive Health Programs in Low- and Middle-Income Countries – 2 credits
  • Researching Violence Against Women and Girls – 2 credits
  • Global Health Communication Interventions – 2 credits
  • Preventing Health Disparities – 2 credits
  • Global Health Diplomacy – 2 credits
  • Environmental and Occupational Epidemiology – 3 credits
  • Climate Change and Social Change – 2 credits
  • Credits: 10-15

Overview: Public Health Careers in Texas

We’ve seen tremendous growth in the public health sector in Texas and with more than 430, 000 jobs expected to be created between by 2022, and a need for many different health services, it’s clear that the sector will continue its upward trend.

By 2022, the home health sector is predicted to be the fourth fastest growing industry statewide. The continued growth won’t just afford opportunities to more people, it will also tackle important health issues such as preventable diseases. The decline in the number of Hepatitis A cases is a good example of this – since 2003, with vaccine availability and vital child immunization requirements prioritized, the cases in Texas have drastically declined.

As a result of the progress with preventable diseases, the Texas Department of State Health Services allocated more than $50 million to fund prevention methods for HIV/AIDS, viral hepatitis and STI and TB. With this financial support and the growing need for public health professionals, Texas is opening the doors to financial, personal, and rewarding growth for interested individuals.

It’s imperative that the most vulnerable and underserved populations in the community have access to good public health services. With that work ethic and goal in mind, we need talented professionals who will assume a pivotal role in developing and implementing public health initiatives.

Careers You Can Get with a Public Health Degree in Texas

Below are a handful of job postings that represent some of the career options available to graduates with an MPH. (The following samples are examples only and are not representative of a job offer or an assurance of employment.)

Health and Human Services Program Coordinator

City of Austin in Austin

Responsibilities:

  • Develops objectives, goals, policies, and procedures for assigned public health programs
  • Implements assigned public health programs and assesses community response and efficacy
  • Evaluates compliancy of assigned programs with local, state, and federal regulations
  • Leads and promotes various public health programs through media and other outlets

Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree with an additional four years of work experience in a public health field with background in planning and program management
  • Master’s degree in public health can be substituted for one year of the work experience requirement

Public Health Administrator

City of Corpus Christi in Corpus Christi

Responsibilities:

  • Serves as administrator under the Support Services Division of the Public Health Department
  • Serves as administrator over program operations related to accounting, grant administration, health education, and vital statistics
  • Develops policies and procedures and implements public health program operations
  • Directs program operations, evaluates program effectiveness and quality, and develops and implements strategies for program improvement
  • Prepares and manages budgets of assigned public health programs
  • Appropriately allocates funds for public health programs

Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree in public health
  • Master’s degree in public health preferable
  • Three years’ similar experience required

Public Health and Prevention Specialist II

Department of State Health Services in Austin

Responsibilities:

  • Serves as a team member in the management of HIV investigational data
  • Develops short- and long-term objectives for achieving operational goals
  • Ensures accuracy of data compiled during HIV investigations
  • Investigates reports of HIV and STDs to ensure proper reporting and disease intervention and follow-up
  • Assess and evaluates the efficacy of program systems to ensure complete accuracy of the HIV reporting process
  • Establishes appropriate policies and procedures and assists with program implementation.

Requirements:

  • Four years of public health experience
  • Bachelor’s degree can be used to substitute two years of the experience requirement
  • Master’s degree can be used to substitute two years of the experience requirement

Career Opportunities With a Public Health Degree in Texas

Pursuing a degree in the public health sector in any place comes with that fulfilling, purposeful feeling of serving your city and providing a vital service to the community. In Texas, you will be making a difference to the health sector, working with likeminded professionals who provide support and growth, and breathe easily in the financial and job security that comes with the positions available. Opportunities for public health advancement can also be found in this advancement packet

While financial funding for further education is always a concern, the state schools in Texas offer programs that are affordable and within reach for all professionals. The numbers below show the growth percentage for various career options in public health in Texas.

Job Growth Projections – Master’s-Educated Public Health Professionals in Texas

The employment projections shown below have been published by Projections Central and are a snapshot of the expected demand for public health professionals in Texas from 2016 to 2026:

  • Social and Community Services Managers: 22.1 %
  • Statisticians: 43.8 %
  • Microbiologists: 13.3 %
  • Epidemiologists: 14.3 %
  • Social Scientists: 7.3 %
  • Rehabilitation Counselors: 20.7 %

Salary Range – Public Health Professions in Texas Requiring a Master’s Degree

The U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics provided the salary predictions for public health jobs in Texas in 2019. The salaries below range from the bottom tenth percentile to the 90th percentile and it includes the averages for Austin, Dallas, and Houston:

Social and Community Services Managers: $38,210 to $ 108,190

  • Average in Austin: $71,460
  • Average in Dallas/Fort Worth/Arlington: $50,710
  • Average in Houston: $73,200

Statisticians: $48,550 to $131,300

  • Average in Austin: $89,320
  • Average in Dallas/Fort Worth/Arlington: $101,510
  • Average in Houston: $84,590

Microbiologists: $35,760 to $ 77,550

  • Average in Austin: $48,180
  • Average in Dallas/Fort Worth/Arlington: $66,480
  • Average in Houston: $52,860

Biological Scientists, All Other: $ 50,000 to $ 114,400

  • Average in Austin: $76,760
  • Average in Dallas/Fort Worth/Arlington: $84,940
  • Average in Houston: $93,060

Epidemiologists: $ 43,780 to $ 93,690

  • Average in Austin: $63,390
  • Average in Dallas/Fort Worth/Arlington: $78,340
  • Average in Houston: $62,310

Social Scientists and Related Workers: $ 57,330 to $113,400

  • Average in Austin: $80,960
  • Average in Dallas/Fort Worth/Arlington: $85,450
  • Average in Houston: $92,100

Rehabilitation Counselors: $26,250 to $65,750

  • Average in Austin: $52,800
  • Average in Dallas/Fort Worth/Arlington: $50,710
  • Average in Houston: $43,440

Public Health Resources for Students & Professionals

Texas Department of State Health Services

The website for the Texas Department of State Health has everything you need on the relevant laws and regulations, up-to-date news on health related issues, job opportunities, and the licensing process.

Texas Higher Education Data

The Texas Higher Education Data website is a good resource for gathering detailed information about various educational institutions. Here will find information about enrollment, graduation statistics, and even student follow up stories.

State of Texas: Official Website

If you’re looking for information on the lifestyle, health, work opportunities, and any travel and job information then Texas.gov should be your go-to. Visitors and residents can get up-to-date information on official state documents and use the services any of the convenient online services offered.