What is public health?

Public health practitioners help solve the world's most pressing health problems.


While clinicians work to treat patients individually when they are sick, public health prevents people from being sick in the first place. The field is focused on improving the living conditions for people around the world.


Those in public health work at the community or population level. The impact can be local or global. But no matter which population or where they are located, students make different in the lives of others.

Equity and Justice

The basis of preventing disease and impacting communities often begins with addressing the root inequities that cause health disparities. Public health professionals do just that.

Profiles in Public Health

Tate Atkinson
Tate Atkinson

"My experience working in health care inspired me to pursue a Master of Public Health. When helping patients I was exposed to the public health issues, such as barriers to accessing care, food insecurity, and housing instability, which many Oklahoman’s struggle with."

Walae Hayek
Walae Hayek

"Public health is a multidisciplinary field dedicated to achieving health equity and preventing disease by addressing the social determinants of health."

Ashley Vaughn
Ashley Vaughn

"Public health means acknowledging the interconnectedness of our world and using it to address the root of the inequalities in health outcomes that we see today."

Marcus McKay Jr.
Marcus McKay Jr.

"Public health is the interdisciplinary field of study whose sole purpose is to investigate, inform, and intervene on any subject that causes harm to the health of the mass population."

Alyssa Rentuza
Alyssa Rentuza

"Public health to me is not just the social, economic, judicial, medical, and biological factors that contribute to individual and community well-being, but also finding where we can contribute to and bolster the systems that support this well-being."

Deanna Gatling
Deanna Gatling

"Public health is a collaboration of concepts and ideas that are the foundation for building strong, healthy communities."

What We Do

This Is Public Health, a brand run by the Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health, raises awareness about education and career options in public health through student ambassadors, graduate fairs, partnerships, interprofessional activities, and other pipeline-building events for students.

Since the inception, This Is Public Health has produced:

Shop Swag

Today, we celebrate the role water plays in public health and raise awareness about the water and sanitation crisis currently affecting our globe. Billions of people around the world do not have access to safe water. To accelerate change, we need action.

Visit the link in our bio to learn more about World Water Day and how you can get involved in the movement! 💧💧

#WorldWaterDay2023 #ThisIsPublicHealth
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Happy first day of spring! 💐☀️🌸🌱 With spring break season upon us, we hope you are taking the time to prioritize self-care. Mental health is a critical component of public health, so make sure to take care of yourself this spring! #ThisIsPublicHealth
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Hello everyone! My name is Olivia Rajpathy. I am an international student from India pursuing my second year of the Master of Public Health (MPH) program at the University of North Dakota. This week, I have the privilege of taking over as the This Is Public Health Ambassador for this platform and I'm excited to share my thoughts on some interesting public health topics.

As someone who is passionate about public health, I believe that it's important to raise awareness about issues that affect us all. Throughout the week, I will be sharing my insights on various topics that I believe need to be addressed. I'm eager to engage in discussions with all of you and learn from your perspectives as well. I look forward to a thought-provoking week ahead!

#AmbassadorTakeover #ThisIsPublicHealth
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Happy International Women's Day! IWD is celebrated globally to honor the achievements of female-identifying individuals. It also brings focus to issues surrounding reproductive rights, gender equality, and gender-based violence. This year's theme is #EmbraceEquity. #IWD2023 #AmbassadorTakeover
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Hello everyone! My name is Sherry, and I am a second-year MPH student at @columbiapublichealth. I'm looking forward to doing this week's #AmbassadorTakeover. I'm very excited to share fun facts and resources with you about the field of public health. Cheers to a good week ahead!
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We conclude this year’s I ❤ Public Health Month with immense gratitude to the TIPH Ambassadors, ASPPH member institutions, and our public health community who contributed content.

I ❤ Public Health Month is the perfect time to remind ourselves of the amazing work that our public health community does to keep us healthy and safe. Thank you!!

#ThisIsPublicHealth #I❤PublicHealth
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Our communities are healthier and safer because of the work of public health professionals such as these ambassadors.

TIPH Ambassadors:
Sherry V., Columbia University (@columbiapublichealth)
Grace H., Baylor University (@baylorpublichealth)
Aidan D., West Virginia University (@wvusph)

#ThisIsPublicHealth #I❤️PublicHealth
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One of the reasons I love public health is through my experiences in the prehospital field. Being an EMT, especially over the past 3 years has meant getting to experience a little bit of everything that public health has to offer. 

While many people think of EMS as purely clinicians (and that is a very important aspect!) there is so much more that EMS provides to the field of public health!

Disaster and pandemic response has been a big learning experience for my colleagues and I over the past ~3 years or so and has really made us feel more integrated into the healthcare system as a whole. 

First responders are often an initial source of health advice for many people, and though we have limited ability to diagnose or provide recommendations, sometimes all that is needed is a friendly face to bounce ideas off of. 

In many areas firefighters and EMTs are the first line of public service response. Fall and can't get up? Worried about your neighbors health? Need a smoke detector installed? Chances are we'll be the first ones to show up when you call!

I also can't overstate the importance of getting to interact with patients in the comfort of their own home. Being able to provide not just a basic clinical assessment but also seeing how a patient's home environment is impacting their health is often key in establishing differential diagnoses and ensuring a high standard of continuing care. 

EMT's and other first responders are all around you filling roles (both public health and otherwise) that you may not even notice! And that's so much of why I love public health and EMS!

#thisispublichealth #AmbassadorTakeover
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