Public Health, Executive M.P.H. - Management and Leadership

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Southern Connecticut State University is uniquely positioned as the first public institution to deliver an executive MPH degree designed to prepare students with the knowledge and skills to become innovative leaders and assets to the public health field. The Department of Public Health, with its longstanding reputation as a leader in graduate education, as evidenced by its accreditation from the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH) since 1998 and through the performance of its students and alumni, carries Southern’s mission from the classroom to the community. Since the award of its first MPH degrees in 1993, approximately 650 students have graduated and entered the workforce in local and state, public and private, health-related and public health organizations.

The Executive Master of Public Health (MPH) Degree Program with its unique concentration in management and leadership, develop public health leaders who will assume managerial positions in healthcare entities, local, state and federal government agencies, insurance companies, community-based agencies, biotechnology and research organizations. It is intentionally designed with the needs of mid-career public health professionals in mind. Premised on practice-based teaching and learning, the program allows students to incorporate their professional experience into the classroom through two modalities – fully online and hybrid.

Program Mission

The mission of the Department of Public Health is “to advance the state of public health practice and to promote and protect the health of the public.” This is accomplished through exemplary teaching and professional preparation that includes opportunities for community-based participatory research and practice.

The Executive MPH employ faculty trained and experienced in the discipline and specific areas they teach, as well as online teaching. Our existing faculty are well-established in teaching, research, service and professional development on campus. They also have strong relationships with interprofessional public and private, local, state, national and international health agencies.

Core Course Competencies

Similar to the existing programs, and consistent with accreditation requirements set by CEPH, the proposed Executive MPH degree program paths consist of 42 credits. Although this is only six credits fewer than our traditional MPH degree program, students in the proposed program are able to complete the course requirements in less time and without disrupting their career progress due to the flexibility and convenience online and hybrid courses afford to students. The competencies are organized around core disciplinary and interdisciplinary, cross-cutting areas.

Discipline-specific Competencies: Students will be assessed through course performance aligned with identified learning objectives. Each course involves assignments that require critical thinking, problem solving, professional writing, practical application and mastery of content.

• Biostatistics (PCH 515)
• Environmental Health Sciences (PCH 510)
• Epidemiology (PCH 551)
• Health Policy and Management (PCH 564, PCH 548, PCH 525)
• Social and Behavioral Sciences (PCH 520)

Cross-cutting and Emerging Public Health Competencies:
• Evidence-based Approaches to Public Health (PCH 550)
• Public Health & Health Care Systems (PCH 550)
• Planning & Management to Promote Health (PCH 525 & PCH 550)
• Strategic Planning (PCH 550)
• Leadership (PCH 549)
• Interprofessional Practice (PCH 525, 550)
• Systems Thinking (PCH 549, PCH 550)

Program Sequence - 42 Credits

As sequencing changes, it is highly recommended that students meet with their program advisor to finalize a list of requirements for graduation.  

Required Courses (33-36 Credits)

PCH 500 – Foundations of Public Health – 3 credits** (only if needed)
PCH 510 – Environmental Health – 3 credits
PCH 515 – Biostatistics – 3 credits
PCH 516 – Public Health Research – 3 credits
PCH 520 – Social and Behavioral Foundations in PH – 3 credits
PCH 525 - Diversity in Health Organizations- 3 credits
PCH 548 – Public Health Administration – 3 credits
PCH 549 – Public Health Leadership – 3 credits
PCH 550 – Strategic Planning for Health Organizations – 3 credits
PCH 551 – Epidemiology – 3 credits
PCH 564 – Health Systems and Policy – 3 credits
PCH 595 – Public Health Internship – 3 credits

Elective Courses (3-6 Credits)

*Choose 3-6 credits to apply towards the elective requirement. These courses must be offered at the graduate level and be pre- approved by the student’s advisor or the Graduate Coordinator.
** PCH 500 course would only be required only for students needing foundational knowledge identified during the admissions process.

Capstone Requirement (3 Credits)

The capstone is highly focused on advancing leadership skills; the field experience follows a flexible combination of credit for prior experience and other structured practical projects.

PCH 593 – Special Project Capstone – 3 credits

Leveraging the course schedule to build four eight-week courses in the fall and spring semesters while also using two summer and one winter sessions provides an expeditious and affordable pathway to this advanced degree online.  Additionally, the hybrid model with its weekend-residencies and online learning platform provides an alternate option for local students seeking opportunities for in-person networking and a chance to cultivate deeper connections with faculty and peers. Admitted students start the program in the summer session and complete all or most of their coursework online depending on the modality they select. The program is designed to be completed in 15 months, but students may elect to take two years (part-time) to complete their degree requirements.

The cohort model used facilitates social cohesion among our students and to help them to gain the support of their peers, provide the social and practical support needed for completion of the program, while simultaneously expanding their professional networks. For students in the online program intentional activities are incorporated to facilitate collaboration, team building and networking. For students in the hybrid program, the weekend residencies facilitate networking and collaborative learning. Providing a flexible schedule of online and hybrid course offerings eliminate the barrier a regularly scheduled in-person course schedule may present to full-time working adults and advance student retention and program completion.

Admission Requirements

Application Deadline

Applications may be submitted until May 1

Applications completed after the deadline will be considered on a space-available basis. Students are admitted to the Executive Master of Public Health program in the summer semester.

• Minimum required GPA 3.0

The following are submitted to the School of Graduate and Professional Studies at:

• Completed application for graduate admission
• Application fee
• Personal Essay
• Two letters of recommendation
• Transcripts from all schools
• University immunizations requirements
• An interview may be required; individuals selected for interview will be notified by the Graduate Coordinator once the application file is reviewed.

Academic Standards and Requirements

• Students must achieve a final course grade of "C+" or higher in all public health core, specialization and culminating courses used to fulfill the requirements of the Executive M.P.H. degree. Any course with an earned grade of less than "C+" must be repeated (the next time the course is offered) and passed with a minimum of "C+". In addition, students cannot repeat a course in the core or specialization more than once.
• An overall grade point average of 3.0 is required to begin the capstone and for graduation.
• All requirements for the M.P.H. degree must be completed within six years.
• An extension of the time to complete degree requirements may be granted only in cases of compelling, extenuating circumstances. To obtain an extension, a student must petition the graduate program coordinator prior to the expiration of the program.
• Applications for graduation must be submitted within the time limits established in the Academic\Calendar.
• Graduation is not automatic upon completion of degree requirements. Students who do not apply for graduation will not graduate.