Undergrad to Grad FAQ

What exactly is a Master’s of Public Health?
The Master of Public Health (MPH) degree is recognized globally as the primary professional practice degree in the field of public health. Learn more about our MPH degree.
What exactly is a Master’s of Science in Public Health?
The Master of Science (MS) is the research-based degree in the field of public health and is often used in preparation for a doctoral (PhD) program.
What can I do with a degree in Public Health?
Many public health graduates will find work in the public sector in local, state, or federal health departments. The jobs available at health departments range from Food Safety Inspectors to Health Educators; from Policy Analysts to Epidemiologists. Other public health professionals will find work in university systems as researchers. Those interested in working for a non-profit organization can find jobs in health advocacy or policy. Still others will find work in the private sector – working in randomized control trials or for health insurance companies. Learn more about careers in public health.
Is there anything I should be doing as a senior in high school/first years of college to help my chances of being accepted into this program?
Yes. In addition to getting good grades, students should familiarize themselves with the field of public health. Ways to do this include researching public health, volunteering at public health organizations, and talking to and/or shadowing people in the field.
What is the timeline for U2G?
Students will take CPH:1400 Fundamentals of Public Health prior to their junior year.  Students will then apply to the MPH Program by Feb. 1 in their junior year and will start the combined degree in their senior year (taking both public health graduate courses and undergraduate courses). Bachelor’s degrees will be conferred in the spring of students’ senior year. Students will take graduate courses in their fifth year and Master’s degrees will be conferred in the spring.
How do I apply?
Applicants must apply through the Schools of Public Health Application Service (SOPHAS), as well as pay a graduate application fee to the University of Iowa Graduate Admissions Office.
I am pre-med and want to become a doctor. Would this program benefit me?
Yes. An MPH degree gives health professionals a more holistic view of health so that patients can be treated with more than just their symptoms in mind.  U2G would also allow you to begin medical school earlier, as the combined degree program takes one year off of the traditional Bachelor’s and MPH degree route.  Work with your advisor to make sure you are meeting the requirements for the U2G program and medical school.
What are the benefits of participating in the Undergrad to Grad Program?
There are 4 main advantages to participating in this program:

  • Save time – Earn an advanced degree on an accelerated track (5 years as opposed to 6)
  • Save money – Reduce costs associated with earning a master’s degree
  • Prepare for the future – Gain the skills and knowledge needed to launch a public health career
  • Establish a competitive edge – A master’s degree can increase earning potential and qualifications for more senior positions
How do I get more information about the Undergrad to Grad program?
Contact the program at cph-admissions@uiowa.edu.