The BS in public health at UWM provides you with real-world knowledge, skills and experiences — in the classroom and the community — to be a positive force for change in the world.

Public health improves the health of people and communities. Instead of treating individual patients, public health works in and with communities to prevent disease before it starts.

And when you get your public health degree at UW-Milwaukee, you will begin your public health career at one of the nation’s top universities for research and community engagement, while learning from accessible and knowledgeable instructors at Wisconsin’s only accredited college dedicated to public health.

Choose Public Health at UWM and join a community of students, faculty, and staff dedicated to social justice.

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What is your passion? There is a public health career for you.

  • Sociology and psychology? You’ll excel in community health and health promotion.
  • Political science and government? Pursue a career in policy and advocacy.
  • Math and numbers? You’ll find your niche in data analysis and biostatistics.
  • Discovering causes of disease? Your perfect career path could be epidemiology and disease prevention.
  • Biology and ecology? Make an impact in environmental health.
Find yourself in public health at UWM.
Find yourself in public health at UWM.

Find yourself in public health!

When you choose the Public Health major at UWM, you will:

  • Learn and live public health in Milwaukee’s diverse and dynamic communities.
  • Jumpstart your public health career with 120 hours of field placement with our community partners.
  • Save time and money by earning a bachelor’s and master’s degree in public health in five years.
  • Learn from top instructors at Wisconsin’s only accredited school dedicated to public health.
  • Specialize by combining your bachelor’s in public health with one of UWM’s many certificates or minors.
  • Create a world that is a socially just and healthy place for all!

BS in Public Health

The public health major requires 120 credits, with a minimum of 33 credits of general education and other foundational courses, 54 credits in the public health major, and 27-33 elective credits tailored to each student’s interests and career goals.

The large number of elective credits enables students to combine the BS in public health degree with specialization in one of UW-Milwaukee’s many minors or interdisciplinary certificates.

We also offer an accelerated Master of Public Health (MPH) degree with four areas of specialization. This program allows high achieving undergraduates to save time and money by completing their bachelor’s and master’s degree in public health in only 5 years!

Our curriculum meets the high accreditation standards set by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH).

See the full description of the public health major.

Public Health Major Courses (54 credits):

PH 101: Introduction to Public Health (GER-SS)3
PH 142: Exploring Global Environmental Health3
PH 201: Public Health from Cells to Society I3
PH 202: Public Health from Cells to Society II3
KIN 270: Statistics in the Health Professions: Theory and Practice (QLB)3
Or SOCIOL 261: Introduction to Statistical Thinking in Sociology (QLB)
PH 302: Health and Disease: Concepts and Contexts3
PH 303: Climate Change, the Environment & Human Health (GER-NS)3
PH 304: Foundations of Epidemiology3
PH 319: Introduction to Health Disparities 3
PH 327: Foundations for Action in Public Health3
PH 346: Environmental Health and Disease3
PH 355: Public Health Research Methods I3
PH 408: Comparative Health Systems: A Social Determinants Approach3
PH 410: True Lies — Consuming & Communicating Quantitative Information3
PH 427: Strategies for Action in Public Health3
PH 428: Project Implementation & Evaluation for a Healthy Society3
PH 455: Public Health Research Methods II 3
PH 600: Public Health Integrative Experience (Service Learning)3

Please note: All courses are subject to change. Please consult the Academic Catalog for the most up-to-date information.

Public Health Careers

Job demand for public health graduates is high. Trained public health professionals are needed in Wisconsin and nationally to fill a shortage of skilled public health workers.

With a public health degree from UWM, you will be ready to launch your public health career in a variety of settings, including local and state government agencies, health care organizations, for-profit organizations, nonprofits and academic institutions.

With a bachelor’s in public health, you can become a:

  • Community outreach and education coordinator
  • Biostatistician*
  • Data manager
  • Environmental, health and safety coordinator
  • Environmental scientist*
  • Epidemiologist*
  • Grant writer, coordinator or manager
  • Health educator
  • Infection control preventionist
  • Preparedness coordinator
  • Program planner, evaluator, manager or director
  • Public health analyst, coordinator or specialist
  • Risk assessor
  • Tobacco prevention coordinator
  • Violence prevention advocate

* advanced degree required.

Young Cho
  • Associate Professor, Community & Behavioral Health Promotion
Keith Dookeran
  • Associate Visiting Professor, Epidemiology
Rose Hennessey Garza
  • Assistant Visiting Professor
Amy Kalkbrenner
  • Associate Professor, Environmental Health Sciences
Linnea Laestadius
  • Associate Professor, Public Health Policy
Michael Laiosa
  • Associate Professor and Faculty Chair
Lorraine Halinka Malcoe
  • Associate Professor and Public Health Undergraduate Program Director
Todd Miller
  • Associate Professor, Environmental Health Sciences
Kurt Svoboda
  • Associate Professor, Environmental Health Sciences
Musa Yahaya
  • Teaching Faculty II

Public Health Research at UWM

As a BS in Public Health student at UWM, you will have opportunities to be mentored in research by expert faculty in Wisconsin’s only accredited school of public health.

Many of our Public Health majors participate in exciting research collaborations with faculty through the UWM Support for Undergraduate Research Fellows program.

At UWM, the Office of Undergraduate Research (OUR) is our central location for undergraduate students seeking on-campus research opportunities with faculty. The OUR supports these collaborations by providing student salary, travel support, and professional development opportunities.

Learn more about the Office of Undergraduate Research.

Here are some of the issues where you could make a difference in public health:

  • Chronic disease
  • Climate change
  • Communicable disease
  • Environmental health
  • Fair housing
  • Food insecurity
  • Global health
  • Health care access
  • Health equity
  • Immigrant health
  • Injury and violence prevention
  • Lead contamination
  • Maternal and child health
  • Mental health
  • Opioid epidemic
  • Racism and health
  • Reproductive and sexual health
  • Tobacco prevention