Student/Alumni Profiles

Zena Alhija
MPH, Public Health Practice & Policy
Zena Alhija, MPH Candidate

Overview of MPH in Public Health Practice and Policy

The University of Maryland School of Public Health offers a Master of Public Health (MPH) in Public Health Practice and Policy administered by the Department of Health Services Administration.   This blended learning program is designed to provide working professionals with the broad range of knowledge and skill-based competencies needed to assume leadership roles in addressing important public health practice and policy issues locally, nationally and globally.

You do not have to take leave time from work; courses fit in with your personal and professional responsibilities. The MPH can be completed in as little as 18 months while minimally disrupting personal and professional life.  Instruction is delivered in a blended learning format with stimulating on-line courses supplemented by a total of six weekends of residency. Easy to use web-based technology enables students to learn in an engaging interactive environment.  A total of 6 - 8 residency days during the program afford an opportunity to integrate online learning with leadership driven practice.  

The MPH 45-credit multi-disciplinary curriculum covers the core principles of public health (6 courses, 14 credits), public health practice and policy (8 courses, 24 credits) and internship and capstone (2 courses, 6 credits).  You determine the number of courses you wish to take each semester. This MPH curriculum and degree have the same content, quality and high standards as the traditional on-site MPH program. 

Intensive leadership training begins immediately on the first day of the program and is woven throughout other courses. The internship provides an opportunity to apply previously acquired knowledge and skills in a health or allied health organization. The capstone project enables you to integrate all your course learning and experiences in a final project.  Intensive advising/mentoring enhances your learning experience.

The exceptional learning experiences and leadership development you’ll gain in this MPH program will raise your career trajectory by increasing your marketable expertise, professional flexibility and mobility, executive leadership competencies, career advancement readiness, lifetime earning potential, professional network support and ability to contribute to society.

University of Maryland School of Public Health faculty and experts from prominent public health organizations are course instructors.  

MPH in Public Health Practice and Policy Courses

Module  Description Courses
Module 1 Principles of Public Health Core Courses 6 courses
Module 2 Public Health Practice Policy 8 course
Module 3 Internship and Capstone 2 courses

Module Description and Course Details

Module Semester Course# Course Name Credit

Module 1: Principles of Public Health Core Courses

Fall - year 1 SPHL601 Foundations of Public Health 1
Fall - year 1 SPHL602 Applied Data: Epidemiology & Biostatistics  4
Fall - year 1 SPHL603 Applied Data Laboratory 1
Spring - year 1 SPHL610 Program Planning, Development and Evaluation 5
Spring- year 1 SPHL611 Public Health Ethics  1
Fall - year 2 SPHL620 Leadership and Policy Analysis 2
Total Integrated Core  14
Module 2: Public Health Practice and Policy  Fall HLSA601 Introduction to Health Systems 3
Summer HLSA702 Policy and Politics of Health 3
Spring HLSA711 Health Economics and Analysis 3
Spring HLSA720 Health Law and Ethics 3
Spring HLSA740 Healthcare Strategic Planning and Marketing 3
Fall HLSA745 Public Health Practice and Management  3
Fall HLSA772 Healthcare Leadership and Communications 3
Summer HLSA775 Public Health Research Methods  3
Total Public Health Practice and Policy Module  24
Module 5: Internship, Capstone, Thesis
Fall, Spring, Summer HLSA778 Internship 4
Fall, Spring, Summer HLSA786 Capstone Project 3
Total Internship, Capstone Module 7
Total Credits Required for Public Health Practice and Policy 45















The following list represents the competencies for the MPH in Practice and Policy Program: 
MPH in Practice and Policy Competencies Courses
Apply systems thinking and organizational theory to address public health and health care management issues. HLSA 601, HLSA740, SPHL610, 

Evaluate the main components of the organization and delivery of healthcare in the US and other nations and impact on population health.

HLSA 601, HLSA745,  SPHL601
Evaluate the policy making process and determinants of success and failure of public health policies to achieve improvements in population health at local, state, federal, and international levels HLSA702, HLSA601
Apply economics principles and methods to analyze efficiency of private and public health policy and management issues HLSA711
Apply the principles of strategic planning, development, marketing, budgeting, management and evaluation in organizational and community initiatives. HLSA740, SPHL610, 
Apply analytical methods for analysis of health management problems and potential solutions. HLSA775,  SPHL610, 
Demonstrate leadership and management skills for building partnership through collaborative efforts and communication of health policy and management issues. SPHL610, SPHL620, HLSA772
Describe legal and ethical bases for public health, health care management, and health services HLSA720, SPHL611
















The University of Maryland School of Public Health is accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH). MPH students are eligible to take the National Board of Public Health Examiners exam to become Certified in Public Health (CPH) after completing all the core principles of public health courses.

Professional Opportunities

Healthcare is the largest industry in the U.S. and employs over 11 million workers.  Twenty-first century health care professionals require cutting-edge knowledge and exemplary leadership skills to enable their organizations to rise to societal, technological, ethical, financial, and public health challenges.  

The leadership, practice and policy focus of the MPH in Public Health Practice and Policy will give you practical knowledge and professional skills to apply to your work in the health industry and launch you into the next state of an upward career path. The program will enable you to build a platform of professional network support that will benefit you throughout your career.

Admission Criteria:

MPH applications are reviewed with consideration to the following criteria:

  • Minimum 3.0 undergraduate GPA
  • Undergraduate and any graduate transcripts
  • 3 letters of recommendation that address your academic capabilities
  • Statement of goals and interests
  • Relevant academic/work experience
    International applicants requiring an I-20 are not eligible to apply as this mostly online program has a mandatory face-to-face element. The University cannot issue an I-20 for this program. Otherwise, international applicants already in the U.S. who are permitted to enroll in such studies must follow The Graduate School International Admissions.

How to Apply:

For more information, please contact Dr. Negin Fouladi
For more specific program information, please visit The Office of Extended Studies.

Advancing a Better State of Health Through Public Health Leadership Online Format with Limited Residency.