Public Health Leadership Program Degrees and Certificates

Public Health Leadership Program (PHLP) offers the Master of Public Health degree as well as an array of online certificates.

photo by Sean Dreilinger
The MPH is available in three tracks–Leadership (which includes focus areas in Field Epidemiology, Global Public Health, Public Health Nursing, and Public Health Practice);  Health Care and Prevention; and Occupational Health Nursing. The MPH Program requires a minimum of 42 credits, in accordance with guidelines from the Council on Education for Public Health. It is available in both distance and residential formats, with the exception of the Health Care and Prevention Track, which is offered only on campus.  A fourth track, Online Global Health, will be added shortly.


Check out our Gillings Program Search (GPS) for prospective students. The GPS provides a search option for our School’s degree and non-degree programs, as well as the ability to drill down to an overview of each program’s quick facts and related information about how to apply. Find out more: click link(s) below to view more details about your program(s) of interest. See our School’s tuition and fees page for related information.


Master's Programs Show Details

Master of Public Health with Global Concentration (MPH Online)

The Online Global Public Health track is intended to provide working professionals from around the world with interdisciplinary knowledge and analytical skills needed to design, implement and evaluate policies and programs to address complex global public health issues as leaders in the field. Potential students will have a bachelor’s degree (e.g. in nursing, pharmacy, science, social science, engineering or public health), or a professional degree (e.g. in medicine, dentistry, and law), and preferably 3 years or more of work experience.

Master of Public Health with Health Care and Prevention Concentration (MPH Residential)

Provides physicians and medical students with a population perspective and skills to use that perspective in clinical as well as community settings. After viewing the GPS overview, see our MPH in Health Care and Prevention partner page for additional information.

Master of Public Health with Leadership Concentration (MPH Residential)

This program is designed for new and experienced professionals interested in public health practice and in strengthening their leadership capabilities in a public health context. Applicants come from a variety of disciplines and have a range of experiences. To meet their needs, we have designed a curriculum that builds on previous work experiences and that also allows some flexibility within the program of study. After viewing the GPS overview, see our Residential MPH in Leadership partner page for additional information.

Master of Public Health with Leadership Concentration (MPH Online + campus visit(s))

This program is designed for new and experienced professionals interested in public health practice and in strengthening their leadership capabilities in a public health context. Applicants come from a variety of disciplines and have a range of experiences. To meet their needs, we have designed a curriculum that builds on previous work experiences and that also allows some flexibility within the program of study. Students will be able to complete this program while only traveling to campus once. After viewing the GPS overview, see our Online MPH in Leadership partner page for additional information.

Master of Public Health with Occupational Health Nursing Concentration (MPH Online + campus visit(s))

Provides education and training to professional nurses in occupational health nursing to promote worker health and safety. Interdisciplinary curriculum supports the scientific and disciplinary development of occupational health nursing and provides opportunities to apply knowledge through a mentored practicum experience. Students are prepared for leadership/ management positions in industry, government, and other occupational health settings, to act as consultants to business, industry, and government, and to provide program planning and evaluation expertise. After viewing the GPS overview, see our Online MPH in Occupational Health Nursing partner page for additional information.

Master of Public Health with Occupational Health Nursing Concentration (MPH Residential)

Provides education and training to professional nurses in occupational health nursing to promote worker health and safety. Interdisciplinary curriculum supports the scientific and disciplinary development of occupational health nursing and provides opportunities to apply knowledge through a mentored practicum experience. Students are prepared for leadership/ management positions in industry, government, and other occupational health settings, to act as consultants to business, industry, and government, and to provide program planning and evaluation expertise. After viewing the GPS overview, see our Residential MPH in Occupational Health Nursing partner page for additional information.

Certificate Programs Show Details

Certificate in Field Epidemiology (FEPI Online)

This is a 12-credit hour program of graduate study that addresses: core functions of outbreak investigation; surveillance systems and methods; infectious disease epidemiology; and field epidemiology methods. All courses are taught completely online. No travel to the UNC-Chapel Hill campus is required. Online certificates are available to any interested student NOT currently enrolled at UNC-Chapel Hill. After viewing the GPS overview, see our Certificate in Field Epidemiology partner page for additional information.

Certificate in Core Public Health Concepts (PHCP Online)

This is an interdepartmental 15-credit hour program of graduate study covering the required core content taught within UNC’s MPH programs: epidemiology, biostatistics, health policy and management, environmental health, and health behavior. All courses are taught completely online. No travel to the UNC-Chapel Hill campus is required. Online certificates are available to any interested student NOT currently enrolled at UNC-Chapel Hill. After viewing the GPS overview, see our Certificate in Core Public Health Concepts partner page for additional information.

Certificate in Global Health (PGHC Online)

This is an interdisciplinary 9-credit hour program of graduate study that examines the complexities inherent in improving health on a global scale. Prepares students to work in changing environments and with diverse populations and to respond competently to health challenges presented by permeable geographic and cultural boundaries. All courses are taught completely online and no travel to the UNC-Chapel Hill campus is required. Online certificates are available to any interested student NOT currently enrolled at UNC-Chapel Hill. After viewing the GPS overview, see our Online Global Health Certificate partner page for additional information.

Certificate in Occupational Health Nursing (POHN Online + campus visit(s))

This is an academic program of graduate study entailing 11-12 credits in coursework specially developed for distance education. All credits earned are completely transferable as part of the requirements for the completion of the OHN Concentration MPH degree. Students will be able to register, receive materials, interact with faculty and successfully complete this program while only traveling to campus once for eight days. Online certificates are available to any interested student NOT currently enrolled at UNC-Chapel Hill. After viewing the GPS overview, see our Occupational Health Nursing Certificate partner page for additional information.

Certificate in Public Health Leadership (PUBL Online + campus visit(s))

An 11-credit hour program of graduate study covering the core content taught in PHLP’s Leadership MPH concentration. Beneficial to public health professionals aiming to further develop their leadership skills and potential. The curriculum is designed to provide leadership development directed at the individual, team, organizational and community levels within the context of public health and healthcare. Students will master competencies that will enable them to have a greater influence and effectiveness within their organizations. Students will be able successfully complete this program while only traveling to the UNC-Chapel Hill campus once.Online certificates are available to any interested student NOT currently enrolled at UNC-Chapel Hill. After viewing the GPS overview, see our Public Health Leadership Certificate partner page for additional information.

Certificate Programs Show Details

Graduate Certificate in Interdisciplinary Health Disparities (CIHD Residential)

Provides training that supports a long-term and sustained public health effort toward addressing and ultimately eliminating public health disparities experienced by African-Americans, Hispanics, American Indians, Alaska Natives, Asian-Americans, and Pacific Islanders, compared to the U.S. as a whole. Students enrolled in the Interdisciplinary Health Disparities Certificate Program will gain a synthesis of knowledge across a variety of disciplines and an expanded depth of the nature and causality of health disparities and be able to translate knowledge into effective action within the U.S. and across the globe. This residential certificate program is available to current degree-seeking residential UNC system affiliate graduate students and professional learners enrolled in the Part-Time Classroom Studies program through the William and Ida Friday Center for Continuing Education.

Graduate Certificate in Global Health (CGH Residential)

The purpose of the Graduate Certificate in Global Health is to provide current graduate students with a comprehensive understanding of global health conditions, needs, and solutions that cross borders in both developing and industrialized countries and regions. The Certificate complements students’ departmental requirements by offering courses and seminars that will prepare them to work in changing environments and with diverse populations, enabling them to respond competently to the challenges inherent to a career in global health.  Students will learn to identify and analyze the factors that generate disparities in health status, health resources, and access to health information and services, particularly for ethnic minorities and other marginalized and vulnerable population groups. In conferring a Global Health Certificate, the School of Public Health acknowledges students’ capability and capacity to perform as public health professionals with a global perspective, with collaborative and cross-cultural sensitivity and skills. Residential certificate programs are available to students currently enrolled in a residential graduate degree program at UNC-Chapel Hill.

Graduate Certificate in Interdisciplinary Health Communication (CIHC Residential)

Provides current degree-seeking residential UNC graduate students with specialized training in health communication. Courses are designed to build expertise for applied practice, academic, and research settings. IHC faculty represent 6 disciplines and conduct research on e-health, message tailoring, risk communication, health decision-making, dissemination, media effects, usability of electronic medical information, and health marketing. Residential certificate programs are available to students currently enrolled in a residential graduate degree program at UNC Gillings.

Graduate Certificate in Public Health Informatics (CPHI Residential)

This 12-credit hour specialized educational option prepares graduates for a variety of public health informatician roles. Combining the existing strength of the SPH curriculum and the informatics curriculum at the School of Information and Library Science (SILS), it will offer focused education with emphasis on public health information systems, information management and manipulation as well as evidence-based public health policy. The PHI certificate is envisioned as complementary to a graduate degree from SPH. Residential certificate programs are available to students currently enrolled in a residential graduate degree program at UNC Gillings.