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User Topic: Public Health Major Seeks Help Choosing a Minor.
Want2help
♀ Member
Member # 20547
Question  Posted: 9:59 PM, August 6th (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

This is the largest group of people that I "know", and I am constantly amazed by your collective wisdom, and I come to you yet again for help.

I just finished my A.S. at my community college, and have been accepted to a local university where I will begin my Bachelor's of Science.

My major is Public/Community Health. After my bachelor's is complete, I will be apply for several grad schools for my MPH (Master of Public Health). After which I intend to apply to two doctorate programs (for Epidemiology).

My career goals are wide open, but my dream would be working to lessen the transmission of AIDS/HIV, primarily in Africa (I am actually applying right now for a term abroad in Botswana).


Does anyone have an opinion on what the most beneficial minor would be? I am currently looking at Black Studies (it has the most courses relating to African History, Health, and Culture from any programs my university offers), Civic Leadership, or Political Science. (My university does not have African Studies OR Global Health, my first choice for a minor).

I am looking to hear from anyone who has an opinion, and if there is anyone who has studied ANY of these areas or classes, that would be even better.

Thanks in advance, everyone.

ETA: Feel free to PM me, if you don't want to post your educational info.

[This message edited by Want2help at 10:22 PM, August 6th (Tuesday)]


BS- me.
FWS- him.
DDay 6/07 (immediately separated)
RDay 8/07
OC born 3/08
OC Adopted 2014

Reconciled


Posts: 2270 | Registered: Aug 2008 | From: PNW
meaniemouse
♀ Member
Member # 10798
Default  Posted: 11:18 PM, August 6th (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Sent you a PM.


Act as if what you do matters. It does. William James

Posts: 2113 | Registered: May 2006 | From: Midwest
heartbroken_kk
♀ Member
Member # 22722
Default  Posted: 12:26 AM, August 7th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

well, I have a background in health policy & epidemiology... and transferred from a community college to a university to complete my BA, so maybe I can ask you some questions to help you think it through?

First, how are you with algebra, calculus, probability, statistics? Because epidemiology is chock full of math related to the data from research on a group of people, and whether or not the results are really significant. So you studied 100 people. But your study group varied in these three ways, and your control group varied in these four ways, how do you know if the results are due to the intervention or the other variations in your groups? If you suck at math, epidemiology will be a very hard grad program to get through. If you don't know how adept you are at statistics, then you will want to test yourself with a course in this area immediately once you get to the university. If statistics is something that you can do OK, but don't enjoy a lot, then think about that in how you pursue your studies. You want a career you can pursue with passion and joy, not struggle with.

Public health, health policy, community relations... this area uses a different part of your brain. If the results of research have already been analyzed and determined what makes a (statistically significant) difference in health outcomes... the question is then how to APPLY that knowledge and affect change. Being a force for change in a community... are you a natural advocate? Can you persuade others? Are you good with public speaking or writing with passion? Can you listen to others tell their stories and piece together a solution to a problem that is culturally sensitive, politically realistic, economically practical? The research may be screaming "Clearly you need to do THIS" but THIS may be so unrealistic that the chances of getting THIS done are basically nil. OK, so what then? Can you get close to THIS? Can you start with THAT and then morph it? Pick a class that helps you explore the politics of change. Take a writing class where you can work on developing powers of persuasion.

Are you good with maps? How about writing code for a computer program? Take a GIS course and learn how to use the power of computers in mapping disease.

Of course it goes without saying that you will want to study physiology and microbiology if you are interested in infectious diseases.

Honestly, I wouldn't worry about a particular "minor" but more on exploring your own unique strengths and weaknesses as a scholar so you can make a great decision that is really perfect for you and allows you a niche in pursuing your interests.

You will NEVER have a better opportunity to get BREADTH in your education than the next two years. After that you will have to select an area for DEPTH. Don't lock yourself in until you've done more self-exploration and self-testing.

Best of luck to you! I would TOTALLY go back to school if I could.

[This message edited by heartbroken_kk at 12:26 AM, August 7th (Wednesday)]


BW then 46, STBXWHNPDPAFTG the destroyer of my entire life.
D-Day 1 1999, D-Day 2,3,4,5,6... 2009 thru 2011.

Separated, divorcing, moving on.
I edit because I always make typos.


Posts: 1184 | Registered: Feb 2009 | From: California
tushnurse
♀ Member
Member # 21101
Default  Posted: 8:38 AM, August 7th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I agree with Heartbroken, it seems that you could go down two very different roads with this. If you are more research based, and wanting to that side of it I would stongly recommend Stat's or Virology as a minor.

If you however are heading more down the path to actually being in the field, and working with the people, and helping to make a certain community better through hands on stuff then I would highly recommend a minor in Education (focusing on adults).
As a BSN, I earned a minor in psych, incidentally due to all the classes my major required. However the biggest part of what I do that has impact on people through my ENTIRE career is education/teaching. A minor in this would have been a beneficial for me. For some people it's something that comes naturally others not so much. It can make the difference in being effective to helping patients/families more than many people realize.

BTW I admire your path, and long term plan.


Me: FBS
Him: FWS
Kids: 15 & 17
Married for 22 years now, was 16 at the time. .
D-Day Sept 26 2008
Fully R'd, and Happy Happy Happy

Posts: 8509 | Registered: Oct 2008 | From: St. Louis
solus sto
♀ Member
Member # 30989
Default  Posted: 12:52 AM, August 8th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

My daughter's finishing her Master's in Public Health this coming year. Her Bachelor's is in sociology, with a strong, strong emphasis on medical and sociodemographics, as well as gender and family sociology. The stats and epidemiology route would likely be helpful to you.

Choose your grad school wisely; you'll want one that has a global health program. One good option is Tulane, which has a school of public health and tropical medicine.

Apply through the SOPHAS, the common app for most accredited schools of public health-- you can then apply to all schools with global health programs.

My daughter says that she highly recommends U of Illinois at Chicago, which has global health with an overlap with the maternal-child health track--useful in the professional niche you are interested in. (That's where she is, and is very happy-- which says a lot, because her undergrad experience was so amazing.)

PM me if you want me to put you in touch with her; she's more than happy to talk to you.

Public health is the wave of healthcare future, IMO. It's a great field with many interesting niches.

[This message edited by solus sto at 1:06 AM, August 8th (Thursday)]


BS-me, 52
WH (Trac-fone), 52, PD
2 kids-DD25, DS18
multiple d-days
DIVORCING
Alone, most strangely, I live on~Rupert Brooke

Posts: 8691 | Registered: Jan 2011 | From: midwest
lynnm1947
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Member # 15300
Default  Posted: 9:06 AM, August 8th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Can you choose psychology? It seems that would be an excellent mix.


Age: 64..ummmmmmm, no...............65....no...oh, hell born in 1947. You figure it out!

"I could have missed the pain, but I would have had to miss the dance." Garth Brooks


Posts: 7213 | Registered: Jul 2007 | From: Toronto, Canada
lynnm1947
♀ Member
Member # 15300
Default  Posted: 9:06 AM, August 8th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Double post.

[This message edited by lynnm1947 at 9:06 AM, August 8th (Thursday)]


Age: 64..ummmmmmm, no...............65....no...oh, hell born in 1947. You figure it out!

"I could have missed the pain, but I would have had to miss the dance." Garth Brooks


Posts: 7213 | Registered: Jul 2007 | From: Toronto, Canada
Want2help
♀ Member
Member # 20547
Default  Posted: 11:46 AM, August 8th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

First, how are you with algebra, calculus, probability, statistics?

Couldn't stand algebra, am wild about STATS. Finals is next week, and I have a 97% currently in the class.

Being a force for change in a community... are you a natural advocate? Can you persuade others? Are you good with public speaking or writing with passion? Can you listen to others tell their stories and piece together a solution to a problem that is culturally sensitive, politically realistic, economically practical?

I am! Well, all of these things except politically realistic/practical. I could see that being an issue for me, but not one that I couldn't overcome.

Are you good with maps? How about writing code for a computer program? Take a GIS course and learn how to use the power of computers in mapping disease.

I had never thought of that, I will look into it!

You will NEVER have a better opportunity to get BREADTH in your education than the next two years. After that you will have to select an area for DEPTH. Don't lock yourself in until you've done more self-exploration and self-testing.

Wonderful advice, thank you.

If you however are heading more down the path to actually being in the field, and working with the people, and helping to make a certain community better through hands on stuff then I would highly recommend a minor in Education (focusing on adults).

Yes, much more my "vision" of what I would like to do. Community advocacy, as well as some policy change. I will definitely look into education.

Solus sto, I will be sending you a pm with my info. What an amazing opportunity, thank you.

It is worth mentioning that I began school with the intention of getting my AAS (I was in a Medical Lab Tech/Clinical Lab Science program) and found that my passion truly was Public and Community Health.

I am still very open to what specific track I choose in the filed, but am more than certain that Public Health is what I want to do with the rest of my time here on the planet. I am very fortunate to be at a place in life where I can return to school, and I think you all for the well wishes!

I speak to my advisor and register for classes at the university this Monday. Wish me luck!


BS- me.
FWS- him.
DDay 6/07 (immediately separated)
RDay 8/07
OC born 3/08
OC Adopted 2014

Reconciled


Posts: 2270 | Registered: Aug 2008 | From: PNW
solus sto
♀ Member
Member # 30989
Default  Posted: 11:29 PM, August 8th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

The love of stats is what drew my daughter away from pre-med to sociology on prep for grad work in public health. She will be happy to talk to you


BS-me, 52
WH (Trac-fone), 52, PD
2 kids-DD25, DS18
multiple d-days
DIVORCING
Alone, most strangely, I live on~Rupert Brooke

Posts: 8691 | Registered: Jan 2011 | From: midwest
Want2help
♀ Member
Member # 20547
Default  Posted: 12:37 AM, August 9th (Friday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Yes! I love Stats. It just feels like one of those things that come naturally, like my brain was made to think in that manner.. I only enjoy numbers when they have meaning (algebra is meaningless to me if it doesn't have a word problem to go along with it).

The same goes for my Public Health classes that I took to fill spaces in my schedule why completing prerequisites for Med Lab Science. It was just the perfect fit for me.


BS- me.
FWS- him.
DDay 6/07 (immediately separated)
RDay 8/07
OC born 3/08
OC Adopted 2014

Reconciled


Posts: 2270 | Registered: Aug 2008 | From: PNW
Topic Posts: 10

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