Professional Experience for Public Health Graduate Students

What is EXPO     Get Started  New Idea  Exchange  Contact us

What is EXPO IconWhat are experiential learning opportunities?

MAR-PHTC’s experiential learning opportunities provide a $3500 stipend to graduate students in public health to build expertise and gain real-world experience on their paths to professional careers. This Health Resources and Services Administration program helps students increase their skills while organizations achieve their goals.

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Just a Few Exciting Projects Students Have Completed


Student Testimonials

In this 8-minute introductory video, participating students share how experiential learning works and what they gained from their projects. Click here to watch the Making the Most of Your Field Placement Opportunities video.

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Projects IconWhat type of projects are available?

Field Placements

Students embed in a public health-related agency to get experience on a career-related professional project. They gain practical, marketable skills by interning with a site supervisor (note: the site supervisor is not a faculty member).

Requirements and deliverables include:

  • Finish in one year (2 years for part-time students)

  • Scientific report or poster presentation

  • Abstract suitable for submission to a public health conference

  • Abstract for Pitt Public Health Dean’s Day or other departmental poster fair (Pitt students only)

  • Other deliverables required by host organization

Detailed info Field Placement Handbook

Collaborative Projects

Students receive mentoring from university faculty. Following rigorous scientific protocols, students get experience with peer-review level research. Topics center on evidence-based practice in public health organizations.

Requirements and deliverables include:

  • Finish in 3–6 months

  • Scientific report or poster presentation

  • Abstract suitable for submission to a public health conference

  • Abstract for Pitt Public Health Dean’s Day or other departmental  poster fair (Pitt students only)

  • Other deliverables required by faculty mentor

Detailed info: Collaborative Project Handbook

Do you have an idea for a field placement or collaborative project? Click on the links below to learn more.

Field Placement – Students
Field Placement – Organization
Collaborative Project – Students and Faculty

Experiential Learning Infographic

See the wide range of opportunities for learning and contributing with this infographic illustrating types of organizations, areas of study, core competencies, presentations, and field placement sites past students have explored. Click here to view the Experiential Learning Infographic.

Projects with Our Partners

Besides Pitt, universities participating in the Mid-Atlantic Regional Public Health Training Center experiential learning program include:
Academic Partners

Each Academic Partner has its own guidelines for facilitating Field Placements and Collaborative Projects for students at their school.

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Get Started

First Things First: Are you eligible?

You can receive all the benefits of completing an experiential learning project by meeting just three simple requirements:

  • You must not have previously completed a Field Placement or Collaborative Project with MAR-PHTC.
  • You must be enrolled part- or full-time in an accredited graduate school of public health (master’s or doctoral program).
  • You must be a citizen of the United States, a non-citizen U.S. national, or a foreign national who is a U.S. Lawful Permanent Resident (i.e., in possession of a green card).


How to Find a Field Placement

Check out these three pathways to a placement.

1. CHOOSE AN EXISTING OPPORTUNITY from these postings and complete an application form.
Click here to learn more about Juris Dogtor with the Justice Dogs Foundation.
Click here to complete the Student Field Placement Application.

2. CONTACT US FOR A CONSULTATION. Tell us what public health topics interest you most and we'll help you find and reach out to an organization that matches your interests. Email us at to learn more. 

3. CREATE YOUR OWN PROJECT. Already have your own idea and organization lined up? Use the Field Placement Proposal Form available at the link below.
Field Placement Proposal Form
Click here to learn more about Student-initiated Field Placements

How to Find a Collaborative Project at a University

Collaborative Projects are currently full. Check back in July when they will reopen.

Click here to learn more about Collaborative Projects

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New Idea

Have a project idea?


Could I really launch my dream career in public health now?

Design a Field Placement around what you care about.


We have so many urgent and worthwhile projects in our pipeline. We could really use some help from a great student!

Field Placements for graduate students

  • Exceed mission goals with substantial public health contributions not possible with existing staff
  • Innovate with fresh perspectives from graduate students
  • Mentor students while benefiting your stakeholders
  • Interview a student yourself for the best match
    Field Placement Request Form Site Supervisor-initiated Project


I'd love to mentor a talented graduate student on my public health research project.
Collaborative Projects with a graduate student
  • Enjoy mentoring a graduate student interested in your research
  • High-level students bring fresh perspectives to your projects
  • Promote evidence-based practice in the next generation of public health professionals
  • Co-author a published an scientific report or poster
  •  Interview a student yourself for the best match

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Networking icon

Networking: Exchange


  •   Convenient , distance-accessible interactive forums


  • Get current insider tips through panel discussions with -public health professionals
  • Enjoy informal conversations with peers about experiences and projects
  • Build career and networking connections
  • Get answers and solve problems about your project and your career direction
  • Tap into exclusive resources about regional public health issues and interdisciplinary possibilities


  • Your peers and future colleagues: students from many locations
  • Your future employer: encounter supervisors from real-world public health organizations
  • Mingle with potential faculty mentors doing cutting-edge research
  • Uncover opportunities with community-based training partners


  • At least twice each academic year

To learn more about Exchange click here to watch this 59-minute video, Tips for Success: Making the Most of Experiential Learning.

Video thumbnail EXPO

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Contact icon

Contact us and Quick Links

Contact Us: 
Academic Partners

Drexel University Dornsife School of Public Health: contact Jennifer Kolker at

Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health: contact Dr. Dan Barnett at

West Virginia University School of Public Health: contact Dr. Diane Gross at


Student Field Placement Application


Pitt Public Health Field Placement Proposal Student-initiated Project

Collaborative Project Proposal

Field Placement Request Form Site Supervisor-initiated Project


Collaborative Project Handbook - Download

Field Placement Handbook - Download


Experiential Learning Infographic 

Currently Available Field Placement Opportunities

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Last modified: Friday, January 27, 2023, 10:34 AM