MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. — Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota is launching a new Bachelor of Science in Public Health program in Minneapolis, beginning fall 2017.

Saint Mary’s new program is in response to the nationwide demand for workers to meet community health needs. The aging population, the rise of chronic health challenges, worldwide viral epidemics, and a focus on preventive health are all factors calling for more professionals in the field.

This unique bachelor’s completion program fills a gap in local education for working adults who have previously earned at least 30 transferable college credit—including community health workers, those with health- or human services-focused two-year degrees, and anyone interested in working in the field of public health.

The series of eight-week courses are designed for working adults who need flexible options to complete a bachelor’s degree. Working students can take advantage of evening classes offered one night a week.

At the bachelor’s degree level, public health is now one of the fastest growing majors in the U.S., according to the Association of Schools and Programs in Public Health (ASPPH).

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 21% growth in the number of community health workers between 2012 and 2022, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ report “Healthy People 2020” identifies the need for more public health experts to prevent and treat diseases, identify threats, and facilitate collaboration with communities.

Careers in this field include public health care services, governmental public health agencies, the private sector, nonprofits, hospitals, and other settings. Saint Mary’s exciting new program will thread the themes of social justice, service, and social determinants of health throughout the curriculum and student experiences.

Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota has a long history of preparing students in a number of health-related occupations, including pre-professional tracks in medicine, mental health practice, psychology, human services, healthcare management and administration, and advance practice nursing.

Applications are being accepted now for the Bachelor of Science in Public Health. For details about the program or the schedule of information sessions, contact Laurie Roy at 866-437-2788, Ext. 8606. Learn more at smumn.edu/publichealth.

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