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Master of Public Health Program at the Medical College of Wisconsin

The MPH Program offers online coursework toward a 42-credit Master of Public Health degree, a 12-credit Graduate Certificate in Public Health, a 12-credit Graduate Certificate in Community Health Assessment and Planning, and a 12-credit Graduate Certificate in Population Health Management. Students may also enroll in courses as non-degree-seeking students. Courses are offered in a convenient, distance-learning format; all can be completed online.

The DrPH and MPH programs at the Medical College of Wisconsin are undergoing a review by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH) for reaccreditation. Part of this process includes the provision of a third-party comment period, which allows anyone, including students, alumni, faculty, staff, community and practice partners, and members of the public, to share relevant information about the programs directly with CEPH. If you have any information about the programs you would like to share with CEPH to inform their review, please send your comments to by September 24, 2024.

Faculty Students Collaborate


We are committed to education, research and service in public health and emphasize this commitment to you, our students. We offer enriching courses and learning experiences that develop public health competencies and promote exploring public health outside the classroom.

Why Join the Master of Public Health Program at MCW?

Our fully online MPH and Certificate programs allow for balance with the many other facets of your life while promoting engaged learning and meaningful connection in an inclusive environment. MCW is committed to helping you achieve your academic and career goals in public health.

About the Master of Public Health Program

Established in 1986, the MPH Program is housed within the Institute for Health & Equity, and has had a successful history of helping students reach their educational goals,

Our vision is for Public Health leaders to drive change to create healthy, thriving, and equitable communities, and we strive to provide an exceptional educational experience emphasizing public health practice, leadership development, and community engagement. 

Goals of the MPH Program

The overall goals fall into three categories that include Education, Service, and Research & Scholarship:

We foster interdisciplinary learning in an inclusive environment for students and faculty of diverse backgrounds, interests, and experiences.
We recruit and retain a diverse faculty and student population.

We partner with communities to address current and emerging public health issues. 

Research & Scholarship
Promote faculty and student scholarship and research that reflects the priorities of the communities, offers evidence-based public health knowledge and solutions, and advances the field of public health.

Important Dates

If prospective students wish to begin coursework during a particular semester, the following application deadlines apply:

  • Fall term - July 1
  • Spring term - November 1
  • Summer term - April 1

Master of Public Health Program Details

Admissions Requirements

Admissions Requirements

Application Information
The Master of Public Health Degree Program is an online, graduate program designed to meet the needs of individuals who hold a bachelor's degree and are interested in public health. Courses are offered through a web-based learning management system and can be taken on a full-time basis. Both degree and non-degree graduate educational opportunities are offered.

Application Deadlines
Applications are received and reviewed all year long, and students may enroll in the program at the beginning of any semester: fall, spring or summer. See Important Dates for specific semester application details.

Application Instructions
View application instructions for the Master of Public Health Degree, Graduate Certificates, and Non-Degree Seeking options on the Graduate School Website.

Current Students

Current Students

Find out more about current student information in the MPH Program
View our current student information
Prospective Students

Prospective Students

Learn more about the Master of Public Health Program
Learn more about our program
Faculty and Staff

Faculty and Staff

Meet Our Team
Meet our team

Frequently Asked Questions

Biostatistics Students
What is Public Health?

Public health refers to the science and practice of safeguarding and improving the health of communities and populations. It encompasses a broad range of efforts aimed at preventing diseases, promoting healthy behaviors, prolonging life, and enhancing the quality of life for everyone. At its core, public health focuses on disease prevention and health promotion on a large scale, considering factors that impact health across entire populations. This field integrates various disciplines such as epidemiology, biostatistics, environmental health, social and behavioral sciences, and health policy to address health challenges effectively.

Key components of public health include disease prevention, health promotion, health equity, community engagement, policy development and emergency preparedness.

Public health is a multifaceted field dedicated to enhancing and protecting the health of populations. It operates on a broad scale, addressing various determinants of health to create conditions where everyone can lead healthier lives.

Explore the following websites for more information about the field of public health and how you can contribute to the field as a public health professional:

Association of Schools & Programs of Public Health

What is Public Health?

American Public Health Association

How is public health different than clinical healthcare?

Public health and clinical healthcare are distinct yet complementary aspects of the broader healthcare system, each focusing on different scopes and approaches to promote health and well-being.

Public health centers on populations, aiming to prevent diseases through strategies like education and policy development. It involves initiatives such as vaccination programs and addressing social determinants of health like poverty. In contrast, clinical healthcare focuses on individual patient care, providing diagnosis, treatment, and ongoing support for specific health issues through medical interventions. Public health proactively targets community wellness, while clinical healthcare reacts to immediate health concerns. Despite their differences, both collaborate within the healthcare system to enhance well-being at individual and population levels.

How do I apply to the MPH program? What is the application deadline?
The Graduate School coordinates admissions and registration, and they use an online inquiry and application system. For further information about admission requirements, including application deadlines, please see the Prospective Students Application Information webpage.
Does your MPH Program have a concentration?

Our program has a single concentration in public health practice. The curriculum focuses on community health assessment and improvement, community health program planning, community health program evaluation, leadership, policy, communication, health equity, and other areas related to public health practice.

What kind of educational background is required for admission?
Public health thrives on the diverse knowledge and skills of individuals from various disciplines. Consequently, there is no one-size-fits-all undergraduate major that is deemed ideal for pursuing graduate studies in public health. We enthusiastically welcome prospective students from a wide range of academic and professional backgrounds.
How long does it take to complete the MPH degree?
Our program allows students the flexibility to tailor their academic journey to suit their schedules and meet their educational goals within 2-5 years. The duration can vary based on individual pacing and course load.
Is the MPH Program accredited?

Yes, both the MCW Graduate School and the MPH Program are accredited.

The Graduate School is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME). The MPH Program is accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH).

What careers can I pursue with an MPH?
With a Master of Public Health (MPH) degree, you open doors to a wide array of rewarding careers across various sectors dedicated to improving community health and well-being. Graduates may find positions in places such as health departments, non-profit organizations, hospitals, academic institutions, corporate health and wellness, and insurance companies. There are also opportunities at the federal level with organizations such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health, and at the international level as well.
How will an MPH or Graduate Certificate advance my career?
Graduate-level coursework in public health will help you build competencies and improve valuable skills in areas such as evidence-based approaches to public health, planning and management to promote health, leadership, communication, evaluation, interprofessional practice, policy development and advocacy, systems thinking, and working with diverse populations. Some students enroll in the program to get started in the field of public health; whereas others have worked in the field for years and are interested in being more effective in their positions or advancing their careers. An MPH degree can expand the skills of many professionals such as nurses, physicians, pharmacists, social workers, etc. In some fields, having an MPH might be a prerequisite for certain roles or career advancement opportunities. Many employers value candidates with advanced degrees or specialized certifications due to the depth of knowledge and dedication demonstrated by such qualifications. The Graduate Certificate programs provide some foundational knowledge and competencies, but the MPH provides additional opportunities to learn and apply public health competencies.
Will I be able to work full-time and attend classes?
The MPH program is geared toward working professionals, with most of our students managing full-time jobs and other commitments. Our program offers flexibility to support student success, but students must commit sufficient time to coursework to ensure timely completion of the program. Typically, courses demand around 6 to 10 hours per week, and completing one or two courses per semester is necessary to meet the program's five-year completion timeframe. This number can fluctuate depending on individual learning styles, variation in assigned readings, and specific weekly assignments. Most students who enroll in the program have the time and motivation to complete coursework, leading to successful graduation outcomes.
Can I transfer credits in to the MPH program from other schools?
The MPH program will accept up to 14 credits of approved courses from other schools or programs. The Program Director decides whether a course will be approved after reviewing the course’s syllabus and transcripts. No transfer credits will be accepted for the Certificate program.
Given the online nature of the MPH program, what can I expect from online courses?

All MPH courses are conducted asynchronously, meaning students can access and complete course materials and recorded lectures at their convenience within the instructor’s specified timeframe. Some instructors will coordinate optional virtual discussions to enrich the class experience, but this will vary by class and typically is not mandatory.

Course materials, lectures, assignments, and discussions are accessible through a virtual platform called Brightspace. Interaction with instructors and fellow students often occurs through discussion forums, emails, and other digital communication tools. The structure may vary, but the online MPH courses aim to provide comprehensive learning experiences equivalent to in-person classes, fostering competency development and knowledge acquisition through online methods, active learning experiences, and collaboration.

Can I transfer from one program to another?
You may transfer from a Certificate program to the MPH program; however, you may not transfer from the MPH program to a Certificate program. If you are enrolled in a Certificate program and then decide you would like to enroll in the MPH program, you must apply to the MPH program. If accepted, the courses you’ve completed toward your Certificate would be applied toward the MPH if you earned a B or higher in them.
Do I need to go to campus for any reason?
No, our courses and programs are offered completely online. There is no mandatory on-campus orientation or summer intensives. We do, however, strongly encourage students to attend graduation in-person.
Do MCW faculty and staff have to pay tuition for the MPH program?
Yes, MCW faculty and staff must pay the same tuition as other students in the MPH and Certificate programs. There is a tuition reimbursement program offered by MCW. Interested individuals can contact the Human Resources Benefits office at to learn more about the reimbursement.

Is financial aid available?
Yes, please consult with the Office of Financial aid at or (414) 955-8208 to learn more about your financial aid eligibility.

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Contact Us

Master of Public Health
Medical College of Wisconsin
Institute for Health & Equity
8701 Watertown Plank Rd.
Milwaukee, WI 53226

Kim Contardi, MPH
Program Manager II, Master of Public Health (MPH) and Certificate Programs

Sarah Curry-Link, MEd
Program Manager I, Master of Public Health (MPH) and Certificate Programs
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