MPH in Public Health Genetics

The MPH in Human Genetics 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.

Upon completion of the MPH in public health genetics, students will meet the following program-specific competencies:

  1. Apply knowledge of inheritance, including basic cellular and molecular mechanisms, and risk factors for disease to understanding a variety of rare and common health conditions.
  2. Identify interactions among genes, environmental factors, and behaviors, and their effects on public health.
  3. Assess the ethics of the application of genetic technologies to public health.
  4. Communicate genetic and genomic principles to the general public as part of current public health initiatives.
  5. Evaluate how genetic principles/technologies apply to diagnosis, screening, and interventions for disease prevention and health promotion programs.


  • Completion of 47 credits, including a minimum of 37 credits of coursework in human genetics and the core public health disciplines
  • A 200-hour practicum
  • Final MPH essay (involving data analysis)
  • Graduates are required to meet the Human Genetics MPH competencies described above and all MPH Public Health Competencies


Recent graduates hold the following positions:

  • Staff, University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy Program Evaluation and Research Unit, Pittsburgh, PA
  • Project Coordinator, Association of American Cancer Institutes
  • Project Coordinator, Libyan Ministry of Health (Vaccination Program)
  • Research Assistant, All of Us Precision Medicine Initiative, University of Pittsburgh, PA
  • Staff, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food Safety and Inspective Service, Washington, D.C.
  • Epidemiologist, West Virginia Health Center
  • Project Manager, Center for Oral Health in Appalachia (COHRA)

Graduates also pursue doctoral study, medical school, or other degrees.


Noel C. Harrie
Student services coordinator
Phone: 412-624-3066
Fax: 412-624-3020