New majors in Health Administration, Public Policy offer new career perspectives for Bloustein undergraduates

September 15, 2014

The number of undergraduates enrolled in the Bloustein School’s public health major has continued to rise, with an exceptionally large number of students were opting to take courses to fulfill a certificate in public health administration. The ultimate goal of students with a focus in public health administration is an administrative career in the healthcare sector: jobs in the health administration area are expected to increase 23 percent from 2012 to 2022.

Responding to the interest in professional opportunities within this important sector, the Bloustein School is now offering a bachelor of science in health administration. This new major (501) will combine a liberal arts background with management theory and the practical skills involved in planning and delivering health services, including epidemiology, health law, and health finance and economics.

Enrollment for this new major is currently underway. “We are all very excited to offer these new opportunities to undergraduates,” said Ann Marie Hill, the school’s undergraduate internship coordinator and an instructor. “Students will have the ability to not only get professional skills and perspectives on different careers, they will gain the understanding that they can change the world.”

The school’s public health major (832) will remain focused on the study of how health issues affect populations, the development of methods to improve the general well-being of the public at large, and the science and politics behind public health policies.

In addition, the Bloustein School introduced a new major leading to a bachelor of science in public policy (833) in the fall of 2013. Students interested in public service often gravitated toward majors in political science, economics, or sociology; the new major in public policy offers a completely different path to help them reach their career goals.

Stuart Shapiro, director of EJB’s Program in Public Policy who played a role in crafting the public policy major, said public policy is a relatively new field of study — noting that even master’s programs in field have only existed for about 30 years.

“The understanding of what it means to have a bachelor’s degree in public policy is relatively new,” he said. “We are, I think, one of the leaders in this area. But we’re not the only ones. There’s a good 30 or 40 other schools, but I do see us becoming a leader in undergraduate education.”

The public policy major gives students a less conceptual, more hands-on approach by introducing them to the use of analytical techniques to better understand public problems as well as the ability to develop and evaluate alternative solutions to those problems. The first students enrolled in the major in the spring of 2014, with the graduates in May 2015.

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