Is Environmental and Occupational Health right for me?

Is Environmental and Occupational Health right for me?

MPH or PhD concentrations in environmental and occupational health

Environmental and Occupational Health professionals strive to understand the impact of environmental and occupational hazards on human health and society. We bring together different disciplines to uncover the root causes of complex problems in order to develop practical and effective solutions. We strive to improve quality of life by controlling and preventing exposures to hazards where people work, live and play.

What degree is required to enter the program?  

  • To enter the MPH program, candidates must have earned a bachelor’s degree from an accredited school and have a combined GPA of 3.0 on the last 90 quarters (60 semesters) credit hours.
  • To enter the PhD program, they must have earned a master’s degree and have a combined GPA of 3.0 on the last 90 quarters (60 semesters) credit hours.
  • See Oregon State University's Minimum Graduate Admissions Requirements for All Applicants for more details.

GRE no longer required

We join many other programs at Oregon State and other peer institutions across the country who have eliminated this structural barrier to promote a more equitable, diverse and inclusive student body.

Are physical or biological science prerequisites required?

  • Undergraduate courses in statistics, biology, toxicology, chemistry and physics are preferred. Depending on your academic background, post-baccalaureate courses in chemistry, biology or toxicology may be required as part of acceptance. Other requirements are the same as for our other MPH programs.
  • See Application procedure for our Public Health Graduate Programs.

May I apply right after completing my undergraduate degree or is experience needed?

  • You may apply upon completion of your undergraduate degree. No experience is required to apply.

What GPA score is considered competitive?

What is the application timeline?

See graduate program application deadlines.

What are some current research examples?

Some recent research includes chemical contamination in groundwater; environmental health and safety management practices; preventing workplace injuries and fatalities in high-risk populations; building in corporate social responsibility and environmental stewardship; community-based environmental health research; spatial assessment of environmental risk factors and human health; children’s environmental health; and environmental justice and respiratory disease.

Internships are required for the MPH program. What are some examples?

Occupational safety and health internships in private sector industry and businesses include high technology manufacturing, construction, biotech, insurance and apparel; Oregon Health Authority; County Health Department; Environmental Health & Safety Office at Oregon State University

What kinds of jobs are graduates finding?  

Infectious disease epidemiologist; occupational and environmental health and safety professional in private industry; loss control consultant for worker’s compensation; National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health researcher; OSHA or OROSHA consultant or compliance officer; international environment, safety and health consulting; GIS analyst; Oregon Health Authority environmental health program specialist; EPA regional safety officer; Oregon Health Authority injury prevention epidemiologist

What websites do you recommend for career information and job opportunities?

What are possible compatible minor programs or concurrent degrees?

Business/operations management, industrial engineering, biostatistics, epidemiology, toxicology, human factors, construction safety management, water resources, international health, health promotion

Is there an opportunity for scholarships/fellowship support?

What is the starting salary range?

  • Environmental Health & Safety Specialists: $57,000 - $90,000.
  • Environmental Health & Safety Managers: $87,000 - $120,000.
  • Loss Control Specialist (insurance industry): $71,000 - $106,000.
  • County or State Health Department positions: $55,000 - $110,000.
  • EOH Instructors, & Professors: $67,000 - $110,000

For more information, contact

Perry Hystad, PhD, EOH program director

Also look for academic program information in the MPH program handbooks.