Public Health Major: Internships & Job Salary 10 Tips

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Public Health Major: Internships & Job Salary 10 Tips

If you care deeply for the people in your community and want to make the world a healthier place, then you should consider a career in public health according to Working in public health can be a great way to make a difference in the world while also getting to enjoy your passion for healthcare and community work as articulated over at If you are a public health major, the following tips should help you know what your options are as far as internships and career opportunities are concerned.

Importance of internships for public health majors

Given that public health professionals work closely with people, internships are crucial according to This is because internships allow public health majors to practice applying skills and knowledge learned in the classroom, interact with technical experts in the field, contribute to a project of public health importance, and acquire skills and knowledge useful to their career. As per the gurus over at, internships also help public health majors increase professional self-awareness and accumulate experience to help enhance job competence after they graduate.

Choosing the right internship

As a public health major, finding the right internship starts with a careful assessment of your personal and professional interests. This is because, as explained over at, some internship programs are broad in scope, providing a more holistic view of how the public health field works at the local, state, and federal level, while others are more specialized. The former is beneficial for students who are still undecided about their future occupations and want to explore different career paths, while the latter are for those who already know where their future lies as far as a career in public health is concerned.

Are public health internships paid?

While there are both paid and unpaid internships in this field, as is true for most other fields, the gurus over at point out that paid public health internships are limited. The true value of public health internships is the practical experience, professional contracts, and real-world knowledge students gain throughout their residence. However, you can still find public health internship opportunities either through networking, by checking out online job boards, or through your college’s careers office. Paid public health internships may either provide a set allowance for the duration of the placement or pay students for hours worked.

How much are public health interns paid?

From discussions on the same over at, you should know that while most programs don’t offer fixed salaries or compensation packages for interns, there are still opportunities to make money while interning as a public health major. If and how much you will be paid will depend on your education level (graduate candidates are likely to be paid and be paid more, for example, the company you are interning in, and the location. On average, however, public health interns in the US make an average salary of $33,941 annually, which translates to about $16 per hour.

Types of internships for public health majors

According to, every public health internship is unique in terms of subject matter, daily responsibilities, program length, and compensation. What students learn will heavily depend on the organization they intern with and the specific projects they are pulled into, which is why students need to choose a program that matches their long-term career plans and fits into their schedule.

Popular public health internships

Several public health internships offer the best experience for public health majors as discussed over at They include:

Public Health Student Intern Program (PHSIP) – It is hosted by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) and offers students an in-depth look at how public health practitioners affect real change at the local, state, and federal levels.

APHA Environmental Health Internship – Offered by the American Public Health Association

World Health Organization Internship Program

Occupational Health Internship Program (OHIP) – Offered by the Association of Occupational and Environmental Clinics

CDC Pathways Program for Students and Recent Graduates

The average annual salary for public health majors

Public health has become one of the most competitive fields out there according to the experts over at, which is why most graduates find that they need to get a master’s degree to compete. However, if you are fresh out of college, the average annual salary for a public health graduate is $68,000. This amount goes higher significantly if you improve your education qualifications by earning a master’s degree and above. The average annual salary for those with graduate degrees is about $82,375.

High-paying jobs for public health majors

Some of the most lucrative careers to consider as a major in public health include:

Public health attorney – They perform as an advocate and advisor when representing people or organizations in matters that challenge public health law and regulations and earn a median annual salary of $122,960

Health and wellness manager – They are employed by medical practices, medical facilities, and long-term/nursing care facilities, and earn an annual median salary of $100,980

Behavioral health program coordinator – They are responsible for administering, managing, and troubleshooting one or many behavioral health programs and earn a median salary of $96,540 annually

Public health engineer – They are tasked with the responsibility of developing policies and systems with the primary objective of mitigating and preventing the public from being sick or injured and earn a median salary of $91,410 annually

Public health veterinarian – They are highly specialized medical doctors who apply their veterinarian skills to help protect both the human and animal populations from potential diseases and injuries that may be generated by animals. They earn an annual median salary of $95,460.

Other top-paying careers to consider include a career as a biostatistician, management policy advisor, director of family health services, vaccine researcher, environmental scientist/sanitarian, hazardous waste inspector, epidemiologist, and many others as covered over at

Entry-level jobs for public health majors

It goes without saying that the above opportunities may be beyond your reach if you are fresh out of college, which is why the gurus over at recommend that you try out the following entry-level positions:

Social and human service assistants

Social worker

Health educator or community health worker

Communicable disease assistant

Public health scientist

Medical office assistant

Contact tracer, and many others

Job outlook

The current health crisis as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic demonstrates the need for qualified public health workers as captured over at However, these professionals were also still in demand even before the pandemic began. For example, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment of Public Health Services Managers to grow by 18% until 2028, health educators by 11%, and epidemiologists by 5%, with the other careers also projected to see significant growth between 2018 and 2028.

Remember if you are looking for more information on this and other related topics, then look no further than the excellent and

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