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Explore the public health bachelor's degree program at UW-Eau Claire

The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire's public health degree is an excellent major for those curious about health on a global scale and eager to help others. 

Rooted in experiential learning, the major's rigorous, interdisciplinary curriculum covers a variety of important topics, giving you the freedom to pursue multiple passions. Designed to pair well with an additional major, such as mathematics, sociology or communications, you have the opportunity to create the diverse resume that employers seek. Dive into social movements, epidemiology, geography, sociology, communications, health policy and management and so much more. Small class sizes allow for a more personalized, cohort-style education. 

Students in the major are regularly encouraged to question, discover and explore. Opportunities to travel and study abroad will further build your awareness of the world around you. And unique research projects, internships and community-engaged service will enhance your problem-solving, analytical and leadership skills. At the end of their program, students will complete a capstone experience, such as an internship, research or public health education and outreach campaigns, giving them real-world experiences before going on to graduate school or into the workplace.

Supported by expert faculty and peers as passionate as you are, you'll quickly find the many incredible learning opportunities that await you at UW-Eau Claire. Individuals who believe in the power of community health and desire access to healthcare for all are needed now more than ever.

Aimee Gillespie, public health minor

Discovering a passion for public health

After volunteering on a political campaign in high school, Aimee Gillespie came to UWEC knowing that she wanted to study political science. What she didn't plan for, however, was also uncovering a passion for public health. Inspired by engaging faculty and innovative courses, Aimee added a public health minor, creating the perfect degree pairing for her career goals.

“Public health enables me to learn about issues I am passionate about, and political science introduces me to the power of policy and politics in influencing health outcomes,” she said. 

Aimee's political science professors encouraged her interest in public health, allowing her to tailor her papers and presentations to health-related topics. Three internships also helped convince her that she was on the right path. Now working with public health agencies through an AmeriCorps program, Aimee has plans to study policy in graduate school — and is eager to get started. 

“To address why illness happens, we need to understand the social determinants of health, which are things a person is often born into, such as socioeconomic status, neighborhoods, physical environments and family trauma. The field of public health constantly seeks to improve these everyday systems to improve health and well-being for vulnerable, traditionally underserved populations."

Why public health at UW-Eau Claire?

Real-world learning. We believe that in order to get the most out of your education, you need to have practical experiences outside of the classroom. Many students take their studies to the field through immersion programs, study abroad or the National Student Exchange program — opportunities we proudly offer to all students. 

Engaged faculty. All public health courses are taught by expert faculty who make you and your success their top priority. Here, you won't just be a number. Faculty will know you by name and do all they can to support you in earning your degree. 

Personalized education. A wide variety of electives allow you to focus your degree on the subjects that interest you most, with curriculum that is designed with your future career in mind. Employers in the public health industry seek out multitalented, broadly educated students, just like the graduates of our program.  

Opportunities to make a difference. Course projects and assignments will push you to think critically, step outside your comfort zone and change the world for the better. Student-faculty research opportunities are readily available to students, each with the goal of making a positive impact on society. 

Excellent career preparation. Through group discussions, presentations and field trips, you'll learn how to approach public health issues through the broad lens of social, economic, cultural, health and environmental conditions. You'll also understand the various policies at play at the local, state, national and global level.

100% employed

or continuing education after graduation

2020-2021 Graduate Report

Quick facts

Public health program details
  • Program length: four years
  • Offered: in person
  • Campus: Eau Claire
  • This major requires a minor or certificate.
  • This program is also available as a minor.
  • Students majoring in this program may choose either a Bachelor of Arts (BA) or Bachelor of Science (BS) degree.
Student organizations
  • Student National Environmental Health Association
  • The Conservationists
  • Women and Gender Minorities in STEM

What can I do with a public health degree from UWEC?

Earning a public health degree from UW-Eau Claire empowers you to take on many different career paths, and pairing the major with another program can help align your interests with your future goals. Work in fields like maternal and child health, behavioral health, research, health communication and so much more. Graduates leave with the knowledge and skills necessary to develop interventions that preserve and promote health and well-being, as well as extensive preparation for graduate school.

Your degree will be in high demand, too. Employment prospects for public health majors are promising, with the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development projecting growth rates in occupations for public health graduates to range from 9.4% to 40.4% between 2014 and 2024.

Public health careers

I see public health as one of the most important aspects of our society. With my passion for helping people and for the environment, I feel a calling for public health.

Connor Barnes Public Health
UW-Eau Claire graduate Madigan Knuth is midway through a public health graduate program.

Public health: a critical role now more than ever

Madigan Knuth, a recent graduate with majors in psychology and French and a minor in public health, is eager to begin her career in the growing field of public health. And the timing of doing so has never been more relevant. The COVID-19 global pandemic highlights the critical role public health plays in the world today — as well as the need for more people to work in preventative health.

“Public health professionals are coming up with strategies to solve problems such as chronic disease, social injustices, environmental health, and maternal and infant mortality,” she said. “These issues will not go away, so we need more people to prevent, promote and protect our world.” 

Madigan is currently pursuing a master of public health degree in maternal and child health, a specialty she found a passion for throughout her time at UW-Eau Claire. Through research, immersion experiences, campus-community programs and independent study, Madigan found supportive faculty and mentors throughout all three of her programs who encouraged her to focus on her public health interests. 

“They strongly encouraged and supported my passion for this path,” she said. “My hope is to work with nonprofits and government health agencies to improve the lives of women and children, especially those experiencing health disparities."

Public health bachelor’s degree program curriculum

With a public health bachelor's degree from UW-Eau Claire, you'll gain insight into the world of human health and disease. Core courses in the major will focus on public health principles and practices, epidemiology, health policy and demography. The curriculum will prepare graduates for entry-level public health careers in the public, private and nonprofit sectors, as well as graduate-level study.

What classes do public health majors take?

Your classes may cover topics like: 

Learn more about the public health major in the UWEC course catalog.

Learn more about the public health minor in the UWEC course catalog.

Related programs at UW-Eau Claire

Thinking about a bachelor’s degree in public health? Here are other programs you may be interested in exploring.

Department information

Photo of petri dishes being used in a lab

Public Health and Environmental Studies

Hibbard Humanities Hall 384
124 Garfield Avenue
Eau Claire, WI 54701
Visit the Public Health and Environmental Studies department website

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