It is increasingly recognized that the best health professionals will have interdisciplinary perspectives, social and cultural acuity (such as in cross-cultural settings) and team-oriented skills.
The Global Health Program's unique research, writing, and field experience opportunities make the BA, BS, and minor excellent preparation for advanced training in health professions including;
Medicine, psychiatry, dentistry, nursing, public health, and pharmacy, as well as graduate training toward the Ph.D. and research or teaching careers in health sciences, medical social sciences, health policy and health law, environmental studies, or medical humanities.
Global Health involves individuals collaborating from many different fields using their expertise to improve health equity for all. Besides the health professions, Global Health can be addressed through positions such as social workers, health educators, engineers and even roles such as marketing and journalism.
Students may find employment with international health agencies (United Nations), government agencies (USAID) and departments of health, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) concerned with health issues, and private business or industry. Some jobs in Global Health will require advanced degrees.
Use your Global Health Field Experience as an opportunity to gain experience in the field. The more experience you have the better job and graduate school candidate you will be.
UC Global Health Institute Global Health Career Video
Are you a Pre-Med Student? Students pursuing their B.A. in Global Health will be able to fulfill their major requirements, as well as their pre-health prerequisites, in the four years it takes to complete the degree with proper planning. Students should utilize Career Services Healthbeat for pre-med advising and preparation.
Your UC San Diego Pre-Med Hub is called HealthBeat!
More Information found on the Global Health Major page.
Health Beat Resources:
Schedule a Meeting with Career Services for Career Advising
The Career Services Center strives to help UC San Diego students determine and fulfill their career goals. Throughout your academic career, they are here to help you learn about yourself, develop skills and identify resources to pursue your professional and academic objectives. Learn more!
Individual Advising - Get career advice and information on topics such as:
- Choosing or changing your major
- Planning your job search
- Finding a job or internship
- Interviewing & negotiation
- Utilizing self-assessment tools
- Deciding on a career
- Networking effectively
- Changing career direction
- Making the most of a job fair
- Applying to professional & graduate school
Fellowships, Post-Grad and Gap Year Opportunities:
- See a list of Fellowship and Post-Grad Opportunities
- Sample Summer and Gap Year Opportunities for Pre-Health and Other Students
- CDC Internships and Fellowships for Undergraduates
- Global Health Council: Goals include: 1) Advocate with the broader community in U.S. and multilateral forums for sound, strong global health policies and resources. 2) Organize and mobilize stakeholders across issues, sectors, and geographic regions to champion broad support for global health programs. 3) Intensify and channel enthusiasm for global health to improve health and wellbeing worldwide.
- American Public Health Association: APHA publishes the American Journal of Public Health and The Nation's Health newspaper. At our Annual Meeting & Exposition, thousands of people share the latest public health research. We lead public awareness campaigns such as Get Ready and National Public Health Week. Together, we are creating the healthiest nation in one generation.
- Pan American Health Organization: Under the leadership of its 52 member countries and territories, PAHO sets regional health priorities and mobilizes action to address health problems that respect no borders and that, in many cases, jeopardize the sustainability of health systems. PAHO is the specialized health agency of the Inter-American System and also serves as Regional Office for the Americas of the World Health Organization (WHO), the specialized health agency of the United Nations. From its Washington, D.C., headquarters, 27 country offices and three specialized centers in the region, PAHO promotes evidenced-based decision-making to improve and promote health as a driver of sustainable development.
- World Health Organization: The WHO is the directing and coordinating authority on international health within the United Nations’ system. This is done by providing leadership on matters critical to health and engaging in partnerships where joint action is needed; shaping the research agenda and stimulating the generation, translation and dissemination of valuable knowledge; setting norms and standards and promoting and monitoring their implementation; articulating ethical and evidence-based policy options; providing technical support, catalysing change, and building sustainable institutional capacity; and monitoring the health situation and assessing health trends.
- World Bank: With 189 member countries, staff from more than 170 countries, and offices in over 130 locations, the World Bank Group is a unique global partnership: five institutions working for sustainable solutions that reduce poverty and build shared prosperity in developing countries. The World Bank Group is one of the world’s largest sources of funding and knowledge for developing countries. Its five institutions share a commitment to reducing poverty, increasing shared prosperity, and promoting sustainable development.
- UNICEF: UNICEF works in 190 countries and territories to save children’s lives, to defend their rights, and to help them fulfil their potential. UNICEF works in areas such as child protection and inclusion, child survival, education, emergency response, women’s health, innovation, and research.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): CDC works 24/7 to protect America from health, safety and security threats, both foreign and in the U.S. Whether diseases start at home or abroad, are chronic or acute, curable or preventable, human error or deliberate attack, CDC fights disease and supports communities and citizens to do the same.
- Doctors Without Borders (MSF): Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is an international, independent, medical humanitarian organisation that delivers emergency aid to people affected by armed conflict, epidemics, natural disasters and exclusion from healthcare. MSF offers assistance to people based on need, irrespective of race, religion, gender or political affiliation.
- National Institutes of Health (NIH): The National Institutes of Health (NIH), a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is the nation’s medical research agency — making important discoveries that improve health and save lives.
- Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-based Violence:The Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence is a national resource center on domestic violence, sexual violence, trafficking, and other forms of gender-based violence in Asian and Pacific Islander communities. It analyzes critical issues affecting Asian and Pacific Islander survivors; provides training, technical assistance, and policy analysis; and maintains a clearinghouse of information on gender violence, current research, and culturally-specific models of intervention and community engagement.
- World Health Professions Alliance (WHPA): By acting as the global representative body for the world’s health professions through a multi-disciplinary, collaborative approach, WHPA works to develop and strengthen the contribution of the health professions to the health of the patients and communities they serve. The WHPA is pro-active and collaborative, offering information and guidance on current health issues relevant to partners and members and providing key stakeholders – such as the World Health Organization- with practical channels to the health professions and their national associations.
Not sure where to start?
Visit the UC San Diego Careers Service Plan for your Future Page - begin your roadmap, explore academic interests, and browse assessment tools.
When looking for a career in Global Health....Exploration:
- Global Health: Career Options & Specialization
- Investigate Careers in Medical Research
- Establishing a Career in Global Health Research
- Top 30 U.S Healthcare Jobs That Don't Require a Graduate Degree
- Global Health Hub
- Health and Drug Abuse Careers
- Explore Health Careers: Global Health
- Exploring Health Careers
- NIH Resources for Careers in Global Health
- CDC Career Opportunities in Global Health Guide
- Public Health Career Guide
- Peace Corps Prep Guide - UCEAP Study Abroad
- Finding a Job in Global Health: Advice from Five Experts (2014)
- Top 7 Ways to Get Your Foot in the Door in Global Public Health
- What can you do with a Master's in Public Health?
Resources for Searching for Jobs:
Please note, some jobs may require additional education beyond your undergraduate degree.
- Use jobs search engines.
- Look up companies you're interested in working with and bookmark their job boards, check back frequently for postings (see some of the job boards listed above under resources for searching for jobs).
- County of San Diego Job Openings
- UC San Diego Job Board
- Careers with International Rescue Committee (IRC) - Working with Refugee Populations
- Partners in Health (PIH) Employment Opportunities
- Project Concern International (PCI) Employment Opportunities
- World Health Organization (WHO)
- United Nations Job Postings
Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): The CDC has employment opportunities for those not in a science-related field as well as science related fields.
- Update your LinkedIn profile and make connections.
- Follow companies you're interested in working with on Social Media.
- Look for an internship, this can sometimes turn in to a permanent job or get you the experience needed to apply for your next position.
Are you looking for a Grad Program in Global or Public Health? Below are some resources to help you search for programs. Please note this is just a list of a few of the many programs out there.
Grad Program Directories:
- Consortium of Universities for Global Health (CUGH) List of Educational Programs in Global Health
- Council on Education for Public Health List of Accredited MPH Schools and Program
- Physician's Assistant Program Directory
- American Association of Colleges of Nursing
- Association of University Programs in Health Administration
- Additional Health Professional Directory can be found here.
Sample of Schools with Global and Public Health Degrees:
- UC San Diego - Master of Arts in Global Health
- UC San Diego - Master of Public Health (February Deadline)
- UC San Francisco - Global Health Sciences (Masters and PhD Programs)
- UC Berkeley - Master of Public Health - Global Health Concentration
- UC Grad Program Search Engine
- Boston University - Master of Public Health - Global Health Certificate
- Brown University - Master of Public Health - Global Health Concentration
- Duke University - Master of Science in Global Health
- Georgetown University - Master of Science in Global Health
- George Washington University - MPH and Dr PH Programs in Global Health
- Harvard Medical School Master of Medical Sciences in Global Health Delivery (MMSc-GHD) - two-year master's program focused on developing critical skills for global health leadership. Apply between August-November
- John Hopkins University -Masters of Science in Public Health - Department of Global Health
- Oregon State University - Master of Public Health - Global Health Concentration
- University of North Carolina Chapel Hill - Master of Public Health - Global Health Concentration
- University of Southern California - Master of Public Health - Global Health Concentration
- University of Washington - Master of Public Health in Global Health
- Yale University - School of Public Health - Global Health Concentration (MPH)
Looking for a graduate program abroad?
Check out goabroad.com to search for programs.
Top Rated Non-governmental Organizations:
- Doctors Without Borders (MSF)
- The Skoll Foundation
- Danish Refugee Council
- CARE International
- Partners in Health
- Mercy Corps
- Action from Switzerland
- Save the Children
- World Vision
- Acumen Fund
Service Corps Opportunities:
- Purpose: “To promote world peace and friendship by fulfilling three goals: 1) To help the people of interested countries in meeting their need for trained men and women, 2) To help promote a better understanding of Americans on the part of the peoples served, and 3) To help promote a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans.”
- Job description: Peace Corps volunteers work in diverse positions ranging from support of agriculture and forestry efforts to classroom teaching, business development, and community health promotion. Your time in the Peace Corps starts with several months of training, after which you will have occasional opportunities to participate in short training events.
- Duration: Two years, typically, though some people extend for a third year.
- Locations: All international (about 60 countries around the world). As of 2014, you can indicate your preference for a particular country, though you may or may not end up getting posted there (if you pass the first stages of the application process, they will offer you a particular job in a particular place, which you can either accept or decline).
- Pay and benefits: Pay varies by country, but you get enough to live on, plus good health coverage, sick leave and vacation, and other benefits. You get money upon completion to help you get settled and some college loans can be deferred or forgiven.
- Eligibility: Must be at least 18 and a U.S. citizen to apply. If you speak a desired language (Spanish and French are often in demand) or have other concrete skills, that can increase your chances of getting a position.
- Application details: Should apply 9-12 months in advance of your desired date of departure (if you would like to start in early summer after a May graduation, for example, you should apply by September of the previous year). The application process is online through the Peace Corps website.
- Purpose: AmeriCorps is a national community service program that places volunteers in hundreds of different jobs with nonprofit and government agencies across the US. The three main branches are: 1) AmeriCorps State and National – This is a set of state-level and nationwide programs providing services of a particular type. 2) National Civilian Conservation Corps trains volunteers to work in teams on particular projects, often (but not always) infrastructure-related. 3) Volunteers in Service to America, or AmeriCorps VISTA. VISTA members generally focus their efforts on building the organizational, administrative, and financial capacity of organizations that fight illiteracy, improve health services, foster economic develop, and otherwise assist low-income communities.
- Duration: Highly varied – there are some summer-long opportunities, but most people work either 10-12 months full time or up to two years part time.
- Locations: Highly varied, but all domestic.
- Pay and benefits: Full-time volunteers earn a stipend totaling about $12,000 for a year. At the end of the year, you are eligible for an education award of $5,500 that can be used for up to seven years to pay for education or pay back student loans. You also have health insurance, personal and sick leave, and some other benefits.
- Eligibility: You must be a US citizen or permanent resident. You must be under 24 to join AmeriCorps NCCC, but otherwise you can be any age over 18 to join AmeriCorps. Most AmeriCorps VISTA projects and many positions with Community Health Corps and other state and national corps units give preference to people with a college degree or several years of work experience.
- Application details: Once you are registered with AmeriCorps, you can apply for up to 10 Americorps positions. Each position description will tell you which of the three branches described above you would be working with.
- Purpose: “Our mission is to mobilize a global community of emerging leaders to build the movement for health equity. We are building a community of changemakers who share a common belief: health is a human right. Global Health Corps pairs intelligent and passionate fellows with organizations that require new thinking and innovative solutions. We provide these young leaders with the tools to remain connected after their fellowship year finishes, deepening their ability to enact change through heightened skills and strong partnerships.”
- Job description: Fellows receive some shared training and then are placed with a variety of partner “placement organizations.” Whatever organization you are in will have a GHC-sponsored “national fellow” who is your partner and who helps you get to know the organization and the population it serves. With help from your partner fellow and their organization and potentially an outside training partner, you get put to work doing whatever the partner organization does.
- Duration: One year, all fellows start in mid-June and work through mid-August of the following year.
- Pay and benefits: GHC fellows get living stipends, housing, health insurance, work expenses, and travel costs. All fellows get $1500 completion awards upon finishing service.
- Locations: As of 2014, GHC volunteers work in Burundi, Malawi, Rwanda, Uganda, and Zambia, as well as in the US itself.
- Eligibility: Non US citizens can apply to be international fellows in US-based positions, but as of 2014 only US citizens can apply to be GHC fellows outside the US. You must be a college graduate to apply.
- Application details: There is a two-part application process. The first part opens in November, the second in December. Both parts must be completed by January. All application materials available on the GHC web site.
- Purpose: Teach for America (TFA) seeks to ensure that children growing up in poverty get an excellent education. They do this by training and placing teachers in schools in both rural and urban areas that serve low-income and often minority populations.
- Job description: Given the goals of TFA, you almost certainly will end up working with students who face a variety of obstacles to school success (poverty, language barriers, violent or unstable home or community environments, etc.). TFA provides various forms of training and support before and during your teaching time to help you gain both the skills you need and the licenses and certifications required to be “official” in the state and school district where you will work.
- Duration: Two years.
- Locations: TFA places corps members all over the US, but some areas have a greater need than others at different times.
- Pay and benefits: You are an employee of the district where you are placed, rather than TFA, so the salary and benefits you get are those of other starting teachers in the district where you are placed. Benefits also vary, but in most cases you get health insurance, retirement benefits, and other benefits.
- Eligibility: Must have a bachelor’s degree with a cumulative GPA of at least 2.5. You must be a US citizen or permanent resident.
- Application details: TFA has multiple deadlines. Check their web site for details and to complete the online application or learn when it will be available.
- Purpose: “The mission of Green Corps is to train organizers, provide field support for today’s critical environmental campaigns, and graduate activists who possess the skills, temperament, and commitment to fight and win tomorrow’s environmental battles.”
- Job description: Each participant works on “three to five different campaigns such as retiring dirty coal-fired power plants, protecting our drinking water, improving our food system and building the campus fossil fuel divestment movement. Organizers will learn important skills such as recruiting volunteers, developing strategic campaigns and building strong coalitions.”
- Duration: One year. There is a three-week introductory classroom training each August and four one-week trainings are scattered through the following year.
- Locations: Highly varied. Green Corps members travel to different communities to work with three to five different organizations.
- Pay and benefits: Salary of $24,000. Optional group health care coverage, paid sick days and holidays, two weeks paid vacation, and a student loan repayment program for qualifying staff. Eligibility: College degree not required, but most applicants have one. Must be a US citizen, permanent resident, or have a visa that allows you to work for the year you would be with Green Corps.
- Application details: See the Green Corps website for details. Application opens each fall.
- Purpose: PHAP seeks to train the next generation of public health professionals.
- Job description: Each PHAP associate is assigned to a state, tribal, local, or territorial public health agency and works on prevention-oriented programs alongside other more senior professionals. A PHAP associate typically completes two one-year job assignments with the same organization, each focused on a different area of public health (focus areas include injury prevention, STIs and other communicable diseases, maternal and child health, and global migration).
- Duration: Two years.
- Pay and benefits: Salary (varies by location, but something near $30,000 a year), paid sick and vacation leave, health insurance, and other benefits.
- Locations: All domestic, but otherwise highly varied, with associates in most states and territories.
- Eligibility: Must be a US citizen or permanent resident. Must have a bachelor’s or master’s degree by July 1 of the year you apply.
- Application details: The application window for PHAP is narrow, but check the PHAP website for final dates and the details of the application.
- Purpose: “The Emerging Infectious Diseases (EID) Laboratory Fellowship Program, sponsored by APHL and CDC, trains and prepares scientists for careers in public health laboratories and supports public health initiatives related to infectious disease research.”
- Job description: Training in research methods, with “Emphasis on the practical application of technologies, methodologies and practices related to emerging infectious diseases.”
- Duration: One year.
- Pay and benefits: About $32,000 in 2014 plus medical insurance and travel costs.
- Locations: Various host organizations around the US.
- Eligibility: US citizens who have earned a bachelor’s degree by the time the programs starts (approx September of any given year).
- Application details: Applications due in February, check website for exact date and application process.
- MA in Comparative and International Education, University of Wisconsin-Madison
- MA in Global Health, UC San Diego
- Master of Fine Arts, Writing for Screen and Television, University of Southern California
- Masters Entry Nursing Program, Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing
- MPH, Program Management and Global Health, Boston University
- MPH, Applied Biostatistics and Epidemiology, Claremont Graduate University
- MPH, Health Policy and Management, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health
- MPH, Global Health & Sexual and Reproductive Health, Emory University
- MPH, Global Health, New York University
- MPH, Public Health and Professional Degree Programs, Tufts University School of Medicine
- MPH, UC San Diego
- MPH, University of Washington School of Public Health
- MPH, Health Policy and Management, Yale University
- MPhil in Epidemiology, University of Cambridge
- MSc in Global Health and Environment, UC Berkeley
- MSc in Anthropology & Development, The London School of Economics and Political Science
- MSc in Medical Anthropology, University College London
- MSc in Public Health, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
- MSc in Public Health, Ludwig Maximilian University
- MSc in Law, Northwestern Pritzker School of Law
- MSc in Global Health, UC San Francisco
Medical School, UC Riverside School of Medicine
Medical School, Medical College of Wisconsin - Milwaukee
Medical School, UC San Diego
Development Coordinator, The Vision of Children Foundation
Clinical Coordinator Assistant, UC San Diego Pediatrics
Clinical Research Coordinator, UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center
Research Project Assistant, UC San Diego Center on Gender Equity and Health
Program Coordinator, UC San Diego Center on Global Mental Health
Research Assistant, Stanford Medicine
La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology
Training & Technical Assistance Specialist, California Coalition Against Sexual Assault (CALCASA)
Certified Birth Doula, Radiant Heart Doula Services
Assistant Director, Valley Palms Care Center
Director, National Health Institution
Rehabilitation Services Associate, LightHouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired
Research Data Analyst, Biomedical Research Laboratories, LLC
Planning Assistant, Trail People Urban Planning Firm
Behavioral Therapist and Assessment Technician, Center for Autism and Related Disorders
- Emma Jackson ('16) was invited to attend a meeting at the World Health Organization in Geneva to share insight from a report she was lead author on
- Ashley Emuka ('17) had some of her research on Supervised Consumption Facilities published in the Lancet Journal
- Bianca Devoto ('17) wrote an amazing blog post titled "The Hidden Costs of Fistula Repair Surgery" for USAID
What our alumni are saying:
"Nothing really prepares you for PA school. You can take all the pre-reqs - load up on human bio, ace anatomy/physiology and crush the MCAT or GRE - but still you will find yourself underwater, paddling for your life when you’re taking your 20th exam of the month. PA school is absolutely like drinking water out of a firehose in terms of the speed, velocity and volume of information that comes at you. While trying to cram thousands of disease etiologies, medication names and mechanisms of action, signs symptoms and physical exam findings for pathologies, you rarely have time to step back and look at the big picture - considering the social determinants of health, or anything beyond the biomedicine. To walk into this PA program with the background and perspective I gained as a Global Health major at UCSD is truly invaluable. In my program there is a noticeable difference between those who emerged from an interdisciplinary background like the Global Health curriculum at UCSD, versus those who only studied hard science on their way into medicine. I reflect on the things I learned via my Global Health degree almost every day. I am so grateful for the background I got from incredible classes like Medical Anthropology, AIDS Science and Society, History of Modern Medicine/History of Public Health, Case Studies of Poor and Underserved Populations, and of course the Senior Capstone which has made every paper I’ve needed to write in PA school a breeze. I had no idea how valuable the Global Health degree would be in my continued education and profession, but seeing it now, I cannot emphasize or suggest it enough for those planning careers in medicine."
- Zani Roberts, PA-S, Western University of Health Sciences