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Master of Public Health in Public Health Genetics

This MPH program integrates genetics and the public health science disciplines of epidemiology, pathobiology, biostatistics, environmental health, and health services research, with ethics, social sciences, public affairs, economics and law. Public health genetics focuses on phenotypic disease prevention in populations, not just individual patients and their families. It addresses society's legal, ethical, financial, regulatory, and organizational responsibilities in offering genetic services, and devising environmental and occupational interventions to prevent disease in populations.


Recent graduates hold the following positions:
  • GS, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food Safety and Inspective Service, Washington, D.C.
  • Fellow, National Cancer Institute, Washington, D.C.
  • AmeriCorps, North Florida Health Corps
Many also go on to doctoral study.

Recent Essay Titles

  • The impact of fertility on public health
  • Public health significance of Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome
  • Oral health and oral health disparities in Appalachia
  • The public health significance of mitochondrial diseases
  • Analysis of birth defects in Allegheny County
  • Genetic counseling at Manovikas Kendra Rehabilitation and Research Institute for the Handicapped in Kolkata, India


Graduates will be able to:
  • Demonstrate essential competencies of public health disciplines, especially use of genetic principles, in a public health practice setting.
  • Apply and communicate knowledge of inheritance, including basic cellular and molecular mechanisms, and risk factors for disease to understanding a variety of rare and common health conditions.
  • Identify interactions among genes, environmental factors, and behaviors and their effects on public health
  • Evaluate how genetic principles/technologies apply to diagnosis, screening, and interventions for disease prevention and health promotion programs, and how they intersect with other public health disciplines.
All graduates also achieve the core and cross-cutting competencies for Pitt Public Health MPH students.


  • 47 credits, including a minimum of 26 credits of coursework
  • Coursework in human genetics and genomics
  • Coursework in all core public health disciplines
  • 200-hour practicum
  • Final essay (usually based on the practicum experience)


Noel C. Harrie
Student Services Coordinator
Phone: (412) 624-3066
Fax: (412) 624-3020

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