Welcome to the Gillings MPH Core.

The Gillings MPH Core is the centerpiece of the Master of Public Health program at Gillings – a single, integrated, 12-credit curriculum that spans our 11 concentrations.

Created by students, faculty and staff from across the Gillings School, the MPH Core gives students the opportunity to start understanding and solving big public health problems right away.

Hear directly from the Gillings School’s Senior Associate Dean for Academic and Student Affairs  about the Gillings MPH Core!

The Gillings MPH Core brings students together to develop and apply critical thinking and problem solving skills, leadership capacity, and core public health concepts.

Students will work together and individually on semester-long projects, developing creative, research-based solutions for real-world public health problems.

Throughout the 2-semester experience, students learn skills and core competencies that they can apply in global and local contexts, including the importance of humility and cultural competency in addressing health disparities.

What does this all mean for your course schedule?

The Gillings MPH Core is a 2-semester, 12-credit integrated curriculum that draws on essential public health principles, methods and evidence. Taught by an interdisciplinary team of instructors, the Gillings MPH Core spans disciplines to teach students how to identify, understand and solve public health problems.

During the fall semester, students focus on identifying, describing and prioritizing public health issues. In the spring semester, students work on developing and communicating public health solutions. In both semesters, students take part in interdepartmental team projects, including a white paper and presentation in the fall and a proposed solution to a public health problem in the spring.


We’ve also created an optional (but strongly encouraged) online orientation program called COMPASS (PDF) that will help students navigate their way more easily through the MPH core.

Course Schedule

You can see all the Gillings MPH Core fall and spring semester schedules online (PDF).

Diagram of MPH Core structure


Have a question? Check the Gillings MPH Core FAQs document (PDF).


Questions? Contact Pamela Lee, pjlee@email.unc.edu, for more information.

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