Jul 24, 2024  
2020-2021 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog 
2020-2021 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Public Health, B.S.

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Go to information for Public Health  

Department Contact:

Chair: Dr. Theresa Horner, thorner@francis.edu, 814-472-3357

Program Description:

Public Health is an evidence-based science of protecting and improving the health of human populations through education, research, and community-wide interventions. The Public Health program at Saint Francis University consists of an interdisciplinary curriculum to best foster the examination of population health from a broad, integrated, liberal arts perspective. Required and elective courses represent an array of topics that provide a solid foundation to this fascinating field. The program design includes practical experiences where students work with seasoned practitioners across a variety of community and clinical settings.

Many career opportunities exist in the field of public health with employment possibilities that span from government, non-profit, consulting, advocacy, to the private sector. The demand for public health professionals is expected to continue well into the 21st century, making the public health major an excellent choice for those seeking employment directly after graduation. Additionally, the Bachelors of Science in Public Health Pre-Medicine allow students to apply for medical school, pharmacy school, or other health-related graduate programs.

Students who major in Public Health will have a variety of opportunities to pursue their interests through active involvement in campus clubs and organizations, as well as, through summer internships, volunteerism, community service, and to engage with faculty in supervised research. Public health majors determine their course sequencing together with a faculty advisor from the Public Health program with the option of earning a BA or BS degree in Public Health. Students may also choose from the following concentrations in Public Health:

  • BS Public Health, Biostatistics Concentration
  • BS Public Health, Education Concentration
  • BS Public Health, Environmental Science Concentration
  • BS Public Health, Epidemiology Concentration
  • BS Public Health, Health Policy and Administration Concentration
  • BS Public Health, Pre-Medicine Concentration

Estimated Completion Time:

Typically 4 years of full-time study

Capstone Requirement:

Students in the Public Health program are required to complete an evidence-based capstone project and supervised field experience in order to graduate from the program. The requirements can be met by successfully completing the following courses:

Graduation Requirements:

A candidate for graduation must satisfy the following requirements:

  • Complete all requirements for an approved program of study;
  • Complete the minimum number of credits;
  • Repeat for an acceptable passing grade any course required for the major in which the grade of “F” has been received;
  • Successfully pass Exam 401 / CHES Exam*;
  • Complete the last 30 credits for the degree at SFU;
  • Achieve a cumulative grade point average of 2.00 or better in all courses taken at SFU;
  • Achieve a cumulative grade point average of 2.00 or better in all major or collateral requirements;
  • Satisfy the requirements of the General Education core curriculum;
  • Satisfy the capstone requirement as specified by the major department(s);
  • Submit a completed Application for Degree form at least one semester prior to graduation date; and 
  • Satisfy financial obligations to the University.

*Exam 401 - Degree Competency will be assessed through the Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) exam. This is a degree requirement and all Public Health majors must sit for and pass the CHES offered through the National Commission of Health Education Credentialing (NCHEC) as a condition of undergraduate degree completion. The student will be responsible for the scheduling and cost of the exam prior to graduation.

Total Credits Required:

128 credits minimum

Courses Required for the Major: (89 credits)

Courses Required for Concentration: (12-22 credits)

Students in the BS program may choose to add any of the following concentrations.

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