What Are Some Career Options with a Community Health Degree?
Community health professionals work in the field of public health to educate people about topics that affect their health and well being. Whether you're thinking about a bachelor's or master's degree in community health, read on to learn about career options available to you. Schools offering Medical Social Work degrees can also be found in these popular choices.
Community Health Degree Programs
Community health programs commonly are available on the bachelor's degree level. Most prepare graduates for entry-level jobs as community health educators. Generally, the goal of a community health educator is to provide at-risk populations, hospital patients or company employees with education for maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
Master of Public Health (MPH) programs also are available with community health education specializations. If you complete one of these programs, you might take on an administrative, management or research position. Some employers of community health educators are noted below.
Hospitals and other health care providers employ community health educators to provide patients with programs and courses in areas like pregnancy and childbirth, hypertension and weight control. In addition to planning and teaching courses, you might be involved in evaluating or promoting program outcomes.
Businesses and corporations employ graduates with community health degrees to help maximize their employees' effectiveness and efficiency. You may work with employers to develop, implement and analyze health programs focusing on issues like stress management, nutrition and job safety.
Government agencies like the National Institutes of Health (NIH) deal with a variety of health issues at the local, state and national levels. As a graduate of a community health degree program, you could implement or develop programs for an organization specializing in the areas of heart disease, cancer or AIDS, to name a few.
You also might find a job with your state's public health department, though a master's degree may be required for these positions. Professionals in this sector may organize media releases or keep health care professionals abreast of the department's policy decisions.
Community health educators also work for non-profit organizations such as a YMCA or community health center. You may educate the public about available resources, such as free health screenings or lectures. You also might create print materials about disease prevention methods. In some cases, this information may be addressed to specific groups of people, such as women or children.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, an 18% increase in jobs was projected for health educators through the 2008-2018 decade (www.bls.gov). This is in large part due to public and private agencies' efforts to avoid paying for expensive health care treatments that could be prevented by changes in diet or behavior. The median yearly salary of a health educator was $45,830 as of May 2010.
To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below: