Indiana, home to nearly 6.6 million people, is a state with a broad range of public health programs and initiatives that tackle health issues ranging from influenza prevention to prenatal care.
Indiana devotes approximately $86 million to funding state health. Federal funds provide another $200.9 million. The Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) has made chronic disease prevention and health promotion a major area of focus for public health spending. Chronic disease prevention includes initiatives such as the Indiana Health Weight program, which aims to reduce obesity rates as a route to preventing co-morbidities, such as diabetes and hypertension.
Indiana faces many public health challenges, including rising rates of overweight and obese individuals, high prevalence of asthma, and high tobacco rates. Many state programs to address these public health issues have been launched in recent years, but sustaining and increasing overall public health depends on the presence of well-educated and equipped public health experts.
A Master’s of Public Health (MPH) from a school fully accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH) provides crucial skills in health policy, program design, implementation, and management. An MPH is the best way to acquire and develop the interdisciplinary skills necessary for a successful career in public health policy and program management.
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Master’s Degree in Public Health in Indiana
An MPH program is ideal for public health professionals seeking career advancement or professionals with an undergraduate degree in a different major interested in a public health career. Professionals interested in developing public health policy and the resulting programs often come from a background in health administration, business, teaching, or a healthcare profession such as nursing.
MPH Program Overview
The Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH), the sole accrediting body for public health graduate programs in the United States, accredits MPH programs that follow the MPH Core Competency model. Developed in 2004 by the Association of Schools of Public Health (ASPH), the model includes five core competencies:
Environmental health sciences
Health policy and management
Social and behavior sciences
Additionally, the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH) outlines seven crosscutting domains it recommends MPH programs incorporate:
Communication and informatics
Diversity and culture
Public health biology
Courses 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
Law, Medicine and Ethics
Total of 10-15 credits
Program Planning and Evaluation: A prime example of program planning and evaluating at work in Indiana is the Labor of Love initiative, a state program designed to reduce infant mortality rates. The program takes a many-sided approach to increase program awareness, help residents access program benefits, and to develop day-to-day involvement in residents’ lives.
The program sponsored a 2015 summit on the issue of infant mortality. One of the main focuses of the summit was to identify and reduce health disparities among socially disadvantaged populations. Success of this program depends on identifying and preventing health disparities and requires broad research to acquire relevant data, as well as smart marketing strategies to increase public involvement. For example, Labor of Love regularly updates a Twitter account, with helpful tidbits of information and links to program resources. Social media is a powerful tool in today’s society, and is one of the easiest ways to distribute information about public health programs.
Courses 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
Marketing Research for Public Health
Total of 10-15 credits
Global Health: This focus area prepares students to analyze and determine health problems in low- or middle-income populations, as well as to evaluate relevant health policies, in the US and on a global level.
Although admission requirements may differ slightly from school of public health to another, typical requirements include:
Bachelor’s degree from an accredited university
Official, current GRE scores
GMAT, LSAT, or MCAT scores may be submitted instead
Official transcripts from all academic institutions attended, including community colleges
Statement of purpose essay (500-1,500 words)
Current resume or CV
At least two letters of recommendation
Job Growth Projections for Public Health Professions in Indiana that Require a Master’s Degree
Indiana’s broad range of public health challenges and corresponding health initiatives fosters opportunities for public health professionals in a variety of different fields.
Shown here is data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the Indiana Department of Labor (IPL) on job growth projections for public health professions in the state for the ten-year period leading up to 2022:
Social and community services managers: 19%
Biological Scientists All Other: 13%
Rehabilitation Counselors: 26%
Salaries for Public Health Professions in Indiana that Require a Master’s Degree
Data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics and Indiana Occupational Wages shows the salary range for public health professions in the state as reported in 2014. Shown here are the salary ranges from the tenth percentile salary to the 90th percentile salary for select public health professions typically associated with a master’s level education.
Social and community services managers: $32,500-80,400
Biological Scientists All Other: $43,400-87,200
Rehabilitation Counselors: $19,100-52,800
Career Opportunities for Indiana Master’s Prepared Public Health Professionals
The career opportunities for professionals with a Master’s of Public Health degree are diverse and exciting. The following job descriptions were found in a survey of job vacancy announcements throughout Indiana performed in January 2016. (These examples do not represent job offers or an assurance of employment.):
Associate Executive Director, Flight1, Indianapolis IN
Strengthen communications and increase program awareness
Research individual and corporate opportunities
Engage with partnering organizations and funders
Ensure campaign timelines and goals are met
Cultivate new relationships with business supporters
Master’s or other advanced degree
Minimum of three years of experience in direct management or fundraising
Demonstrated ability to implement strategies that led to organizational growth
Management/Executive, Eskenazi Hospital, Indianapolis, IN
Develop and manage internship programs that serve students with physical disabilities
Conduct literature reviews to ascertain best practices for internship programs
Develop and enhance existing data collection tools
Partner with Ball State University’s Director of Disability Services to recruit students, maintain communication between organizations, develop methods to track and maintain communication for previous and existing interns
Master’s degree in public health, health administration, business administration, or other related field
Progressive experience in a healthcare field
Experience with programs that serve individuals with disabilities
Experience in fundraising, managing private healthcare programs, or student career services
Pharmacoepidemiology Analyst-Real World Evidence
Provide analytical expertise in studies, risk management plans, regulatory safety questions, and evaluations of potential safety signals
Collaborate with pharmacopidemiologists and statisticians to study conceptualization and design
Develop, execute, and validate logic to analytical results
Evaluate RWD/LHSDs for potential licensing
Stay informed of latest technology and methods for LDH analysis and use
Provide technical support for evaluation, development, implementation, and training of analytical tools and technologies that support risk management and safety and surveillance activities
Master’s degree in health-related field, statistical or information field, or other related field
Two or more years of experience with statistical software packages
Excellent problem solving and analytical skills
High-level knowledge of global regulations for adverse event reporting and patient safety