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MPH Program Admissions

The Upstate Master of Public Health degree requires a minimum of 42 credit hours and accommodates both full and part-time students. Full-time students have the option to finish the program in as little as 12 months, but students have up to five years to complete the degree.

Applying is a two-step process, starting with the Central Application for Public Health (SOPHAS) application at www.sophas.org. At the site, search for SUNY Upstate Medical University Public Health Program under “Institution.” 

When your application has been received through SOPHAS, we will email you a login ID and PIN with which you can access the secondary application. The secondary application must be submitted to Upstate Medical University. There is no charge for the secondary application.

Who Should Apply?

  • Bachelor's degree holders who aspire to one of the many fields for which an MPH is useful or essential.
  • Current health professionals who want a broader base of knowledge of public health.
  • Health care providers who wish to gain a broader perspective of health and healthcare.

Admission Requirements

  • Minimum GPAs preferred at or above a 3.0 (4.0 scale)
  • Baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution
  • Successful completion of both the SOPHAS application and the SUNY Upstate Supplemental Application
  • Within the SOPHAS Application, two essays are required:
    • A personal statement of career goals and any experience as it applies to public health
    • One public health essay; described in the application
  • Three letters of recommendation from individuals who know you in an academic or professional capacity (This does not include personal friends and family)
  • Official transcripts from all previous postsecondary courses

Please note: Applicants can apply to either or both of the following MPH program concentrations: 1) Public Health Methods; and 2) Global Health and Translational Science. More information about these concentrations can be found at  https://www.upstate.edu/mph/admissions/index.php

International students:

  • Applicants who have completed all or part of their education outside of the United States or Canada are required to have a course-by-course educational credential evaluation completed through any National Association of Credential Evaluation (NACES) accredited agency. 
  • A TOEFL or IELTS exam may be requested but is not required to apply.

Highly Recommended:

  • College level biology course
  • College level statistics course

How to Apply

Regular MPH Applicant

Upstate Public Health Master of Public Health applicants must submit both the Central Application Service for Public Health (SOPHAS) application and an Upstate application:

1.  Central Application Service for Public Health (SOPHAS) application - www.sophas.org

Search for Upstate Medical University Public Health Program

Required:

  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Official College Transcripts
  • Personal Statement
  • Public Health Essay

2.   Upstate Supplemental Application

Once your application is received from the Central Application Service for Public Health (SOPHAS), we will email you a Login ID and PIN that will allow you to access our Secondary Application.  Please do not create an account on your own from our Admissions Login page, as that will not allow you to access the Secondary Application.  The Secondary Application must be submitted to Upstate Medical University. This application is free to complete!  

  • The program reserves the right to request interviews.
  • Additional information may be requested based on individual situations.
  • It is the responsibility of each student to confirm that a completed application is on file in the office of Student Admissions.

Transfer Credits

Students have the option of transferring up to six (6) credits of non-public health credits from a CHEA regionally accredited college and/or university and up to twelve (12) graduate-level public health credits from a CEPH-accredited public health program or school. Students who have earned more than twelve (12) credits from an accredited public health program can request to have some of their MPH coursework waived on a course-equivalency basis, allowing the student to take more electives. Additionally, students who have earned twelve (12) credits from a school or program not accredited by CEPH may petition to have twelve (12) credits transferred into the Upstate MPH Program."

Current Upstate MD students applying to the MD/MPH Program

Students who wish to pursue the MD/MPH joint degree program take a leave of absence from the MD program to pursue their MPH studies for a year. This typically occurs between the second and third years of medical school.

  • Complete the SUNY Upstate Internal Application 
  • Once logged in, click on NEW Under "For Current Upstate Students Only:" you will find "MD/MPH Internal"
  • Will need a screen shot of your current Upstate transcript/grades from MyUpstate sent to [email protected]
  • One Letter of Recommendation sent directly to [email protected] or mailed to the admissions office at: SUNY Upstate, 766 Irving Avenue, Syracuse, NY 13210, Attn: Student Admissions
  • Letter of Good Standing: Current MD Students applying internally to the MPH program must be in good standing in the College of Medicine MD program. Once your application to the MPH program is submitted, please send a request to [email protected] to request a verification of good standing which the admissions office will request from the campus registrar
  • Unofficial current Upstate transcript
If you are a matriculated student in a degree-granting graduate program, you must submit one of the following:
  • Graduate Advisor letter or,
  • Program Chair letter.
Please indicate which you will be submitting along with the name of the person who will be sending it.

Essay Question

We want to hear more about your story to this point, and why you are interested in pursuing further education in public health. We would like you to write an essay in two parts. 

  • First, please describe a pressing issue in public health, citing appropriate peer-reviewed literature. This part of the essay should be written in the language of an academic paper. It can be short (no more than 500 words) but written professionally.
  • Second, we ask that you should your career goals and any health-related experience as it applies to public health you may have had (note:  you do not have to have public health experience to be considered for this program). You may link back to the issue raised in the first part of the essay, but you do not have to do so. We are primarily interested in learning about your “story,” about how you see public health, and how you see yourself contributing to public health in the future.

This essay can be sent via email to [email protected]

Current Public Health Certificate students applying to the MPH Program

  • Go to My Upstate
  • Once logged in, click on Under "For Current Upstate Students Only:" you will find "Master of Public Health Internal"
  • Will need a screen shot of your current Upstate transcript/grades from MyUpstate sent to [email protected]
  • One Letter of Recommendation from current Public Health and Preventative Medicine Faculty members sent directly to [email protected] or mailed to the admissions office at: SUNY Upstate, 766 Irving Avenue, Syracuse, NY 13210, Attn: Student Admissions
  • Unofficial current Upstate transcript
  • Updated CV or resume

If you are a matriculated student in a degree-granting graduate program, you must submit one of the following:

  • Graduate Advisor letter or,
  • Program Chair letter.

Please indicate which you will be submitting along with the name of the person who will be sending it.

Essay Question

We want to hear more about your story to this point, and why you are interested in pursuing further education in public health. We would like you to write an essay in two parts. 

  • First, please describe a pressing issue in public health, citing appropriate peer-reviewed literature. This part of the essay should be written in the language of an academic paper. It can be short (no more than 500 words) but written professionally.
  • Second, we ask that you should your career goals and any health-related experience as it applies to public health you may have had (note:  you do not have to have public health experience to be considered for this program). You may link back to the issue raised in the first part of the essay, but you do not have to do so. We are primarily interested in learning about your “story,” about how you see public health, and how you see yourself contributing to public health in the future.

This essay can be sent via email to [email protected]

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