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MPH vs PhD, funding....

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TJNYM

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Hey everyone,

I am in the process of finishing up my MS in psychology, but have decided instead of pursuing a PhD in psych (which was my initial intention) I would like to switch gears and go towards public health... probably epidemiology. And one of the key questions I keep debating about is whether to go for a MPH or a PhD. In a certain sense already having one masters it seems foolish to go right out and get another, but if a PhD is not really crucial to go far in the public health field (which is what I've heard)then its not really worth the extra years. So I was curious as to what people's opinions are for the worth of a PhD. I want to do research, don't really want to teach, so would I be ok and make good money with just a MPH?? And how realistic is it to get into a PhD program with no actual public health experience?

Also funding is a very big issue. I was very fortunate to find an MS program in Psych where I got full funding and an assistanship, but I still have my loans to pay off from undergrad and I really would not like to add to much onto that. I've been looking at various programs: Univ of Minn, Yale, Columbia, UPitt, etc but funding seems to be a rare thing. Are there good MPH programs that do provide a good amount of funding for students?
 

Carlsbad1919

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There are programs that provide funding for MPH students (I think UMass Amherst is good about that) but not the majority I believe. Also, the difference between an MPH and PhD in regards to research can be jumping a few rungs on the professional ladder quicker. A MPH will generally never be in charge of a study (they might coordinate it but they won't be the first author). Also a lot of people in science understand PhD a lot better than MPH; it all depends on what field you are going into though. That said, a MPH does give you a lot of opportunities you just need to figure out exactly what you want out of your career before you start because getting a masters and then a PhD seems like a waste of two years tuition money.
 
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