MPH Epidemiology, working outdoors with focus on ecology/environment/marine life???

Sep 21, 2015
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Hi everyone,

I am trying to figure out what would be the best graduate degree to get for my interests. I would like to work in a position where I can do Epidemiology, and also work outdoors in the environment surveying/researching ecological systems, water quality, marine life, wildlife, sources of pollutants, etc. I DO NOT want to work in occupational / regulatory health, inspection, or compliance. I guess you could say that I do not want a typical desk job--I want to be more involved with the outdoors, ecology, wildlife, and nature.

1) What would be the best course of education/degree for my interests? MPH or MS...in what??

2) What are some job titles that you can think of that would fulfill my interests?

3) What is the job outlook like for these jobs?

I am open to getting a PhD. Again, I have to stress, I am currently working on the compliance side of Environmental/Occupational Health and Safety...I don't want to do that anymore.
 

MolBio

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Just to clarify, does your career have to be anything to do with human health or could you just focus on a degree and career in marine biology? I.e are you trying to make a link between marine animal health and human health? Like for example mercury levels in water, tuna, canned tuna fish, and humans? That sounds like a really narrow career field.

Isn't there a field or inspection department to whichever agency you work for? Alternatively you could do research, or work for the EPA, department of fisheries, etc.

I'm not an environmental health specialist though so take all that with a grain of salt.

Good luck
 

flapjack3d

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Oct 27, 2015
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To my knowledge, you don't really need an advanced degree to do the things you described. Subscribe to some ecology job listserves. Most of them are seasonal, but you'll be doing all the things you want.
Off-topic, but i had a professor who did this for 10 years or so after college before going back for his phd.
 

Stories

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A marine biology and environmental science degree is probably a more appropriate education than a MPH, I think. Alternatively, toxicology programs may also be an option?
 

flapjack3d

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I guess it also is going to depend a lot on whether you want to be designing studies or carrying out others'. If the former, you'll need a PhD, but probably not in public health.