BS in Public Health


Find yourself in public health

  • Learn and live public health in Milwaukee’s diverse and dynamic communities.
  • Jumpstart your 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 5 years.
  • Learn from top instructors at Wisconsin’s only accredited school dedicated to public health.
  • Specialize by combining your BS 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!

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

  • Sociology and psychology? Choose a career in community health and health promotion.
  • Political science and government? Choose a career in policy and advocacy.
  • Math and numbers? Choose a career in data analysis and biostatistics
  • Discovering causes of disease? Choose a career in epidemiology and disease prevention.
  • Biology and ecology? Choose a career in environmental health.

The BS in Public Health at UWM provides students with real world knowledge, skills, and experiences – both in the classroom and the community. You will learn how to diagnose, analyze, and solve a range of public health challenges.

Begin your public health career at one of the nation’s top universities for research and community engagement. Learn from accessible and knowledgeable instructors at Wisconsin’s only accredited school dedicated to public health.

Multi-year merit scholarships are available for undergraduate students in public health at UWM. No application is necessary. All newly admitted students are automatically considered for these merit scholarships.

Have questions? Connect with one of our advisors.


BS in Public Health (120 credits)

The BSPH curriculum includes 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 enable students to combine the BSPH degree with specialization in one of UW-Milwaukee’s many minors or interdisciplinary certificates.

See full description of public health major for more details.

Public Health Major Courses (54 credits):

PH 101: Introduction to Public Health (3 credits)
PH 142: Exploring Global Environmental Health (3 credits)
PH 201: Public Health Dilemmas I (3 credits)
PH 202: Public Health Dilemmas II (3 credits)
KIN 270: Statistics in the Health Professions (3 credits)
HCA 307: Epidemiology for the Health Sciences (3 credits)
PH 302: Health and Disease: Concepts and Contexts (3 credits)
PH 303: Climate Change, the Environment & Human Health (3 credits)
PH 319: Introduction to Health Disparities (3 credits)
PH 327: Foundations for Action in Public Health (3 credits)
PH 346: Environmental Health and Disease (3 credits)
PH 355: Public Health Research Methods I (3 credits)
PH 408: Comparative Health Systems: A Social Determinants Approach (3 credits)
PH 410: True Lies – Consuming & Communicating Quantitative Information (3 credits)
PH 427: Strategies for Action in Public Health (3 credits)
PH 428: Project Implementation & Evaluation for a Healthy Society (3 credits)
PH 455: Public Health Research Methods II (3 credits)
PH 600: Public Health Integrative Experience (3 credits)

General Education and Foundations Courses (at least 33 credits)

Elective Courses (27-33 credits)

BSPH core competencies

  1. Explain the importance of respect for diverse values, beliefs, cultures, and the dignity of individuals and communities in public health practice
  2. Explain the history and philosophy of public health, including its core values, theories, concepts, and functions in society
  3. Collect and analyze public health data using fundamental quantitative and qualitative methods and instruments
  4. Locate and evaluate primary scientific literature and other information sources (e.g., media) to inform evidence-based public health approaches
  5. Outline evidence-based approaches—using data, assessment, and evaluation—to address public health problems
  6. Explain why and how public health professionals should ethically engage in interactions with study/program participants, community (partners and stakeholders), and others to address population health and health equity
  7. Develop advocacy strategies for multi-level social policies and interventions to promote population health
  8. Assess the advantages and disadvantages of health promotion interventions for specific populations
  9. Discuss ethical social, ecological, political, and community approaches to public health dilemmas
  10. Explain the natural history of human health and disease, their biological and environmental origins, distribution among populations, and strategies for their prevention, management, and control
  11. Explain the interrelationship between hazards in the natural and built environment, and human and population health
  12. Explain multilevel and ecosocial pathways through which social, economic, legal, and political structures and systems affect population health and health inequities across the lifecourse
  13. Interpret environmental, regulatory, legal, and economic structures, as well as their interactions, within communities and health systems from the perspective of social justice and human rights
  14. Apply fundamental concepts and features of public health interventions and programs, including their planning, implementation, assessment, and evaluation
  15. Communicate public health evidence and concepts to diverse audiences using a variety of modalities and media.

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


Demand for well-trained public health professionals is high, and on the rise.

As a graduate of the UWM Zilber School of Public Health, you will be ready to begin your public health career in a variety of settings, including healthcare organizations, for-profit organizations, government agencies, non-profits, and academic institutions.

Public health job titles:

  • 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.


profile photoKurt Svoboda, PhDAssociate Professor, Environmental Health SciencesSchool of Public Health414-382-1707svobodak@uwm.eduSchool of Freshwater Sciences, GLRF Main 111


Our faculty, students, alumni, and public health professionals throughout the world are doing research to find solutions to a wide array of important public health challenges.

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

At UWM, the Office of Undergraduate Research (OUR) is a central location for undergraduate students seeking on-campus research opportunities and faculty seeking enthusiastic, motivated undergraduate students with whom to collaborate. The OUR also supports these collaborations by providing student salary, travel support, and professional development opportunities.
Learn more about the Office of Undergraduate Research.

Learn more about the Office of Undergraduate Research.

Become a leader for the public’s health.