Features Public Health

Public health professionals get it done

By Kathryn Stroppel

Healthy behaviors and living a healthy life are influenced by an expansive number of health professionals, ranging from medical care to prevention and education. Karen Elliott, senior instructor II and public health internship coordinator, explored these professions during a one-hour webinar on July 1.  

Whether you’re making a career change or beginning your education, public health offers a number of options for those wanting to improve health and well-being. 

Karen, who joined the faculty in 2007, coordinates field work and internships for undergraduate students and encourages prospective students to keep their end goal in mind.  

“Where do you see yourself?,” she asks. “Get some experiences there. Take leadership positions while a student. Explore the programs and jobs graduates land after graduation. Talk to professors and advisors. Learn about research and career tracks. Participate in internships and experiential learning. Ask for informational interviews. Reach out to directors and researchers. Discover your passion and why and how you want to make a difference. There’s a lot of options!” 

In addition, she says students should consider the transferable skills they will earn through their education, such as teamwork, problem solving, communication skills and taking initiative. 

The good news for students considering earning a degree in the College of Public Health and Human Sciences: Demand for professionals in public health and health fields are growing. 

“You just need a ‘get things done’ attitude because there’s a lot to be done.” 

This presentation was part of the Public Health Insider series, a joint initiative by the CPHHS, the OSU Alumni Association, OSU Foundation and OSU Center for Health Innovation. Other videos in this series include “Public Health 101” and “A public health crisis: Factors that impact your health outcomes.” All three videos are housed on the CPHHS YouTube page.