In This Section

Careers in Health

Careers in Public Health and Health Professions

Careers in Public Health and Health Professions

Careers in public health work with populations to prevent disease and promote health. More specifically, public health practitioners work to prevent epidemics and the spread of disease, protect against environmental hazards, prevent injury, promote and encourage healthy behaviors, respond to disasters and assist communities in recovery, and assure the quality and accessbility of health services. Below are some common career specialties in public health.

  • Applied Health Research
  • Biostatistics and Data Management
  • Community Health
  • Preparedness and Emergency Management  
  • Environmental Health
  • Epidemiology and Disease Control  
  • Family and Child Health
  • Global Health
  • Health Education/Promotion
  • Health Communications 
  • Health Informatics
  • Health Policy and Management
  • Health Services Administration
  • Nutrition/Dietetics
  • Occupational Safety
  • Public Health Laboratory Practice
  • Sexual and Reproductive Health 
  • For more information, visit or

Careers in the health professions work with individuals to diagnose and treat disease.  Below are some common career specialties in the health professions.

  • Audiology
  • Biomedical Research 
  • Dentistry
  • Forensic Science
  • Medicine
  • Nursing
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Optometry
  • Pharmacy
  • Physical Therapy
  • Physician Assistant
  • Speech Language Pathology
  • Veterinary Medicine
  • For more information, visit:

Work Settings in Public Health and Health Professions1,2

Careers in both public health and health professions exist in many work settings such as communities, schools, hospitals, laboratories, and corporations.  All work settings may be separated into three employment sectors: Public, Nonprofit, and Private.  Below are descriptions of those employment sectors.  For more information, click here. 

  • Public sector careers include employment with federal, state, county or city government agencies or organizations.  Careers in the public sector serve the public good and are funded (fully or partly) through public monies (taxes).  Example agencies or organizations include Coastal Carolina University, S.C. Department of Education, S. C. Department of Health and Environmental Control, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and U.S. National Institutes of Health.
  • Nonprofit sector careers include employment with organizations that provide services for public good to supplement or support public sector agencies.  Nonprofit organizations are classified as 501(c) by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and operate using various funding mechanisms such as monies from government grants, donations, or services delivered to consumers.  Example organizations include the American Cancer Society, American Red Cross, American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), and United Way.

  • Private sector careers include employment with corporations, companies, or other organizations that operate by private individuals or groups to make a profit (money) for its owners, shareholders, or the company.  Private organizations range from a mom-and-pop company to a global Fortune 500 corporation. Example organizations include Carolinas HealthCare System, Johnson & Johnson, Cardinal Health, GlaxoSmithKline, and Walmart.

Online Resources for Career Opportunities in Health

Resources with Various Career Opportunities In Health 

American Public Health Association Career Mart

Disability Scoop Jobs 

Emory Public Health Employment Connection

Health Promotion Career Network

Medworking Database

National Commission for Health Education Credentialing, Inc.

National Network of Public Health Institutes

Partners in Information Access for the Public Health Workforce 

Public Health Jobs

Public Health Jobs Worldwide

Society for Public Health Education (Membership Required)

South Carolina Healthcare Jobs

Wellness Council of America


Resources with Public Sector Careers

Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (Database)

National Association of County and City Health Officials (Database)

South Carolina Budget and Control Board Human Resources

USAJOBS, the U. S. Federal Government's Official Employment Database 

U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

U.S. Air Force Civilian Health Promotion Opportunities
Apply online at Spectrum Healthcare Resources

U.S. Department of Food and Drug Administration

U.S. Department of Health Resources and Services Administration

U.S. Department of Health & Human Services

U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Global Health

U.S. Department of State

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs  

U.S. National Institutes of Health

U.S. National Library of Medicine 


Resources with Nonprofit Sector Careers

American Association of Retired Persons

American Cancer Society

American Red Cross

Chronicle of Philanthropy (Database) 

Doctors Without Borders

Foundation Center (Database of Foundations)

Idealist (Database)

Medical Library Association

Nonprofit Jobs (Database)

OpportunityKnocks (Database)

Partners in Health

Public Health Foundation

South Carolina Association of Nonprofit Organizations (Database)

United Nations 

United Nations Global Opportunities

United Way

World Health Organization
See also 

Work For a Good Cause (Database)


Resources with Private Sector Careers


BlueCross BlueShield  

Cardinal Health

Carolinas HealthCare System

Conway Medical Center   


Johnson & Johnson

McLeod Health/Hospital

Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center 


Resources with Education Careers

Academic Keys (Database)

American Education Research Association

American School Health Association (Career Center)   

Chalkboard, Opportunities for Educators (Database) 

Chronicle of Higher Education Career Network 

Coastal Carolina University Human Resources

Diverse Issues in Higher Education Jobs

Education World Employment Center Online

HigherEd Jobs

National Education Association

University of South Carolina Division of Human Resources  

Teachers (Database) 


Resources with Nutrition Careers

Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics 

American Botanical Council

Center for Science in Public Interest

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

U.S. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine

U.S. Pharmacopeia


Resources with Generic Career Search Engines

Career Builder


Monster Job Search

SimplyHired Job Search


Resources with Other Health Career Resources

Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (Sustainability-Focused Graduate Degree Programs)

Association of Schools of Public Health (Graduate Schools of Public Health)

Career Key (Career Advice) 

Delta Omega Honorary Society in Public Health (Mentor Network for Public Health)

Explore Health

Learn How To Become (Career Advice) 

Mapping Your Future (Career Advice)

Public Health Online (Career Advice)



1. Karl, K. A., & Sutton, C. L.  (1998).  Job values in today's workforce: A comparison of public and private sector employees.  Public Personnel Management, 27(4), 515-527. 

2. University of California Davis Internship and Career Center.  (2013).  Differences among the nonprofit, for-profit, and public sectors.  Retrieved from

Last Updated: 2/5/2015
Web content contact: Dr. Stephen L. Firsing III,