How to Apply
How do I apply to a program at the Gillings School of Global Public Health?
Each of our programs has a different set of criteria, application expectations and application deadlines.
Fill out the Prospective Student Inquiry Form to request more information about a particular program or degree.
The application process involves a few basic steps.
- Choose the appropriate application steps for the program of your choice. You can find tailored information and application instructions for each program using the Gillings Program Search (GPS). Simply choose a program on the GPS, and then select the “Application Details” of that program.
- Review tuition and fees to determine whether additional steps are needed.
- Apply to your program.
- If you’re admitted and enroll, we’ll refund your Graduate School application fee.
- Check your eligibility on the Reimbursement Statement for Fall 2016 Applicants (PDF).
Be sure to give yourself plenty of time to assemble the best application package possible because we receive more than 2,000 applications each year. We look forward to reviewing yours.
Frequently Asked Questions
I am submitting my application to a Gillings School graduate program through SOPHAS. Why am I also expected to apply directly to UNC-Chapel Hill and pay another fee?
At UNC-Chapel Hill, applicants interested in graduate programs apply and are admitted through The UNC Graduate School rather than to specific departments or schools. The UNC Graduate School charges its own application fee.
Can you give me an idea of general criteria used to review applications to the Gillings School’s graduate programs?
Use the GPS to find specific details on each program’s criteria and expectations for applicants. Our admissions committees review each application using some or all of the following criteria:
- Academics (academic performance and test scores)
- Work experience
- Research experience
- Letters of recommendation
- Program fit (as assessed by your personal statement and background)
Prospective graduate students also should review The Graduate School’s admissions criteria.
What should I include in my personal statement?
- Address all issues requested in the program’s application materials.
- Demonstrate that your career goals have been well-considered.
- Demonstrate that you understand what the program offers and demands.
- Provide details of any experience relevant to your program of interest.
- Highlight strengths, but don’t dwell on facts readily evident elsewhere (e.g., grades, GRE scores).
- If you can identify weaknesses in your application, admissions committee members likely will be able to identify them, too. Address weaknesses directly by explaining extenuating circumstances as appropriate or providing evidence that your skill levels are reflected more accurately by some other assessment. These details may be included in your statement of interest.
Who should write my letters of recommendation?
You should submit a mix of academic and professional recommendation letters.
- Recommenders should speak about your strengths and degree of “fit” with the department to which you are applying.
- Avoid soliciting letters from family friends, other students or employees you supervise.
- The ideal recommender knows you well and is positive about you. That knowledge should come through in the letter.
I’ve been waiting to hear whether I was admitted to the program of my choice. When will I hear from you?
The UNC Graduate School typically notifies students of its admissions decisions between February and May.
I’m interested in transferring from another institution to one of your programs. Is that feasible? And if so, how?
All prospective students, including those with previous college credits in related degree programs, must complete an application as a new student. Individual departments may or may not accept credits earned at another institution. Such decisions typically are based on a review of course syllabi by the program director.
Do your programs accept transfer credits?
Master’s students may transfer up to 20 percent of the credits required for a degree. Credit transfers must be approved by the UNC program in which you are enrolled and by the UNC Graduate School.
Still have questions?
Contact the student services staff member who supports your program of interest.
Uniquely situated in a school of public health, our interdisciplinary programs in air quality and atmospheric processes, human exposure and health effects, and sustainable water resources draw from faculty expertise in the physical and life sciences, engineering and policy.
Renowned faculty members provide students with training in effective research practices and methods. We also work with our students to apply their epidemiology research to a variety of health problems here in North Carolina and across the world.
Our faculty members include experts from behavioral science, communications, health education, international health, medicine, medical sociology and social psychology.
Department faculty members are committed to ensuring that all people, irrespective of gender, race, ethnicity or economic resources, have access to high-quality health-care services.
We are dedicated to improving the health of women, children and families — in North Carolina and around the world. Our teaching program provides students with broad exposure to maternal and child health population needs and priorities, as well as the skills to become tomorrow’s public health leaders.
We have created an innovative program that capitalizes on both these schools’ historical approaches to health, giving our department an unusual breadth of scientific and policy approaches — spanning from cell to society, moving from discovery to delivery.
Building upon varied professional experience, students learn collaboratively to assess community health needs, develop innovative policies and programs and assure that new systems are maintained and improved.