Doctor of Public Health Program

Associate Dean for Strategic Educational Initiatives 
Ian Lapp

The DrPH gives students an advanced education in the scholarship of knowledge translation, the development of a broad understanding of all aspects of public health through integration of multiple disciplines, and the ability to rigorously apply scientific findings to address complex problems of public health policy and practice. The curriculum is designed to provide mastery of high-level competencies in leadership, management, innovation, and communications. This professional program seeks candidates who aspire to lead health-focused nongovernmental organizations, hospitals, health commissions, or ministries of health. Many likely candidates are professionals considering the next move after demonstrating leadership at a nonprofit, government agency, or private company; others are medical doctors who are ready to advance into organizational leadership.

Students in the program develop expertise in change management, innovation, strategic thinking, communications, health systems, policy analysis, decision making, and health sector economics. Successful candidates should plan to pursue leadership roles in the health sector. While some graduates may enter academia for a time during their careers, this is not the goal of the DrPH program. Those interested in academic or research careers should apply to one of the PhD or SD degrees offered at HSPH.

Prerequisites for Entrance
HSPH strives to recruit high-achieving students who are ready to attain the next level of leadership and recognizes that these individuals will come from a wide range of backgrounds. Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree or non-U.S. equivalent. A prior public health master’s degree is encouraged but not required.

Program Requirements
DrPH students undertake intensive, immersive coursework and integrated field experiences over 24 months in residence at HSPH. An essential component of the DrPH is the interaction with faculty and the cohort of the 15–20 students in the program while in residence. Full-time enrollment is expected during the first 24 months of the program, followed by a serious commitment of time for a rigorous extended field experience in a health organization during the third year. Each student also develops a personal portfolio and produces a written culminating project. The degree is designed to be completed in three to no more than four years.

Contact information:
Ian Lapp, associate dean for strategic educational initiatives
677 Huntington Avenue, Kresge Curriculum Center
Boston, MA 02115