celle

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Does it matter what school you get your MPH from in terms of career options?

I am trying to decide whether to attend UC Berkeley or my local NJ school (UMDNJ). Although UCBerkeley has a more prestigious reputation, I am also an out-of-state student so I will need to pay a higher tuition + living expenses. If I attend UMDNJ, I can save a LOT of money both from tuition and living expenses as I can just reside with my family.

The only thing I am worried about is that UMDNJ doesn't really have a national reputation so it may affect my job opportunities upon graduation. Also, I hope to obtain my PhD or DrPH in the future so maybe it doesn't even matter where I get my masters...?

Just wondering, but how are others planning to pay for their education? From your experiences, have any of the MPH schools offered grants or assistantships?

Thanks in advance.
 

NJT

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sorry i don't have any advice but i'd be interested in hearing your options, as i am in nj myself and also applied to umdnj in addition to other more known (and more expensive!) schools..t.
 
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celle

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Hi,
Thank you so much for your reply! Right now, I am more interested in the DrPH as I plan to pursue a more programmatic career (I also know that an MPH is a prerequisite for most DrPH programs).

I will be finishing up my MS in nursing and am sure I want to pursue my MPH to gain the broader population perspective. Since I am more interested in a managerial career rather than an academic career, I am not sure yet if I will continue to pursue a doctorate since an MPH may be sufficient for what I want to do. So, I may just stop with the MPH.

Considering these circumstances, do you think then that going to a more prestigious school (UC Berkeley) is worth the pricetag (I already owe quite a bit for my bachelors and masters)? OR, would going to a more local school be sufficient?

I have been debating this problem for awhile now and would really appreciate others' opinions on this. Is an MPH an MPH or do organizations really care where you receive the degree?

Thanks again for your help!

flindophile said:
An MPH is a professional degree whereas a PhD is research degree. An MPH is generally a terminal degree and, unlike an MS, not a stepping stone to a PhD.

If you plan to go on, I would switch to a research oriented master's degree that will teach you statistical skills (not watered down MPH level stats) that will prepare you for a PhD. My guess is that PhD programs will be more interested in the skill set that you bring to the table than the name brand of your degree.

The DrPH is a bit different. I believe it is basically a super-MPH degree and is generally a professional degree rather than a research degree.

The answer to your depends to some extent whether you plan to pursue a managerial (MPH, DrPH) or research career (PhD).
 

DrMom

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I'm sure you'll find some organizations have preferences of schools, but I don't believe this is a major factor. Considering that the public health field is not a big $ arena, I'd go where you'll accrue less debt. Get involved in some PH activities, organizations, and research and you'll be in a good position when you go for a job.