Your philosophy statement should be a 1-page, single-spaced professional paper that clearly articulates your
passion for community health education and what you would like to do in your professional life. In addition to
being an important component of your Public / Community Health Portfolio, having written your philosophy
statement will prepare you to respond in a number of situations. For example, your internship site may ask “Why
do you want this internship?”; A potential employer may ask in an interview “How does this job utilize your
strengths and passions?”; A health-related graduate program may require a “letter of intent” as part of the
application. Below is a guide that will help you write your philosophy. You do not need to address all of the
criteria (unless noted with required) or organize your philosophy exactly this way; it is a guide to help you.
Section 1: Public Health Passion and Narrative
. Public Health Passion: What population do you want to serve? What health topic do you want to improve?
What is or will be your public health focus?
. Public Health Narrative: Now, the tricky part… WHY? Where did this (your professional passion) come
¡ Tell us a short story. Link to your past. Consider something that happened to you or your family
(carefully), person in your life (carefully), professor / teacher /coach/ mentor, course, volunteer
experience, work experience, internship etc that shaped your vision and pointed you toward public
¡ WHILE maintaining professional norms and without over-sharing in highly formal and professional
setting (e.g., interview, application, etc).
Section 2: Demonstrate You are Grounded in the Field
• Segway into today. Tell us how your passion and past brought you to public health major (or minor) today.
• Tell us what this major (or minor) is to you.
o Show mature knowledge in field here. Bring in textbook / class concepts, but not simple definitions.
Consider themes that resonate with you such as CHES, behavioral theories, philosophical
foundations (e.g., empowerment, respect, power of education, equality, right to health), and or
o Ensure you fully understand concepts you discuss (see wellness ad eating healthy example from
Section 3: Demonstrate You are Prepared to SERVE and Meet Public Health Demands
. Now transition and tell us where you are going.
o Focus on your short-term (within 2 years) plans. (You may include one sentence MAX on long-term
plans – beyond 4-5 years from now).
. AND – importantly – describe how society benefits from you doing this. How will you help people or
society/state/country/world by meeting public health needs?
*You will be expected to improve your philosophy statement in assignment 6 and describe how you improved it. In
addition, you will continue to refine your philosophy throughout your program of study
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