Public Health (B.S.)

Why Study Public Health at NIU?

Public health professionals clean up environmentally contaminated sites. They make our streets and homes safe from violence. They prevent and treat substance abuse. They contain the spread of infectious disease. A Bachelor of Science in public health is your first step toward becoming one of these important professionals.

Our extensive program prepares you for these roles by offering you four different areas of emphasis to choose from:

  • Health Administration — Prepares you for business-related careers in the public health field. This emphasis incudes business classes specializing in management and marketing.
  • Environment and Health — Incorporates classes in geography, environmental sciences and technology. People in these careers will often work outdoors or in a laboratory.
  • Health Promotion —Focuses on community health. Your career opportunities include health education, such as being an STD/HIV caseworker, or a community outreach coordinator. Communication and sociology classes are among the classes you’ll take.
  • General Public Health — Allows you to tailor a program to pursue a career that may not be categorized in the other emphases. In addition to the core public health courses, you’ll complete a minor such as biological sciences or communications studies.

Careers with a Public Health Degree

There are many employment options for public health degree holders. Many choose to work in a hospital or clinic setting while overseeing patient services or recruiting new employees. Others choose the fast-pace, hands-on world of epidemiology and health inspection. Some of the potential job titles include:

  • Environmental health inspector
  • Quality analyst
  • Health administrator
  • Patient service representative
  • Community health worker
  • Epidemiologist

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports health educators and community health workers can expect jobs in to grown faster than average through 2024.

Public Health Faculty

Our public health faculty have diverse research interests including:

  • International health care systems
  • Social aspects of exercise
  • Clinical trial and design analysis
  • Breast cancer and mammography-seeking behavior

Hands-on Learning Opportunities

There are several ways to learn more outside the classroom through student organizations such as:

You can also live in the Health Professions House; seven floors of a residence hall where students interested in health and service-related careers live together and take part in special opportunities, programs and events – all aimed at fostering relationships while learning.

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