MPH Practicum/Internship

Apply what you've learned to a real-world public health setting, and come away with actual deliverables that make the public healthier. 

Depending on your field, the experiential learning component may be referred to as a practicum, internship, or field placement. 

The Practicum/Internship Experience

Many students complete their practicum during the summer months. This may depend on the field, the department, your career interests, your individual degree trajectory, or other factors. Have a conversation with your advisor or department student services staff member to help decide when you should plan to do your practicum or internship. 

Before arranging a practicum, students must meet with their advisor to verify that the opportunity will meet their department's practicum requirements. 

It's also a good idea to meet with a career services counselor to review documents for applications and to prepare for interviews. Career services counselors may also be able to help focus your search or tie your practicum to your eventual career goals.

"I think after this experience, I am more motivated to work towards alleviating problems in my career. Even if I can’t ‘solve’ homelessness, I think I have the power to make things a little better for some people." -Alysse Littleberry (BCHS '20)

"I think there is a gap between the clinical field and the public health field and it can only be bridged by such collaborative efforts." 
-Mohammed Bu Saad (EPI '21)

Student Perspectives on the Practicum Experience (Spring 2021)

School-Coordinated Programs

Pitt Public Health has developed strong relationships with local and state agencies and organizations to develop the public health workforce of the future. The school coordinates organized programs with the following organizations.

Pittsburgh Summer Institute with the Allegheny County Health Department

Experience the day-to-day operations of a county health department while addressing the public health needs of the Pittsburgh community. The application period is typically January-February.

There are other opportunities with the health department year-round in all fields. Fall and spring opportunities are posted in Pitt Bridges.

Bridging the Gaps

Bridging the Gaps is a full-time, paid, interdisciplinary program in which you can promote health in underserved communities and learn from organizations on the front lines each summer. The application period is typically January-February.

Experiential Learning Opportunities from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Public Health Training Center

The Mid-Atlantic Regional Public Health Training Center offers public health students two types of experiential learning opportunities: Field Placements and Collaborative Projects.

Street Medicine at Pitt

Street Medicine at Pitt is a student-run interdisciplinary organization that strives to bring healthcare and social support to the rough-sleeping and unhoused community in Pittsburgh. A practicum with Street Medicine at Pitt centers relationship-based care through interprofessional teamwork and a lens of health equity.

Other Internship Sponsors

Some of the organizations below have hosted Pitt Public Health interns in the past, and are a great place to start your search.

Practica Experiences Bridge the Classroom and Real-World Settings