5 Career Opportunities for MPH Grads in Environmental Health

Graduates from a Masters in Public Health program have many choices when it comes to a specialty field to enter. One of those choices is Environmental Health. Environmental health deals with problems and conditions relating to environmental conditions that affect the health of the people population. Most employed in Environmental health work for agencies like the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO), but there are many different employers in Environmental Health. Just like there are many different employers in Environmental Health, there are also many different jobs to be had in the field. That being said, let's look at five of those jobs right now.

  1. Environmental Radiation Specialist - Environmental Radiation Specialists assess and analyze doses of radiation in eliminating radioactive materials. They also help in policy by reviewing regulations and making sure they conform to the law on all levels of the government. Some Environmental Radiation Specialists work in the field doing investigations and surveys regarding environmental radiation. In addition to the MPH degree, it is essential to hold an undergraduate degree in the science field such as biology, environmental science, etc. You also would need several years of experience working with radiological science. Environmental radiation specialists mainly work for the government sector because of the nature of their jobs. Salary for an Environmental Radiation Specialist is, on average, $62,000 annually.
  1. Environmental Specialist - The environmental specialist makes sure that a company or organization is compliant with all environmental and health regulations. They also help plan and implement emergency response plans in case of an environmental hazard or outbreak. Environmental specialists work for both the public and private sectors. The average salary an Environmental Specialist can plan to make is between $28,000 and $63,000. The pay will likely be higher for a government agency versus a private agency.
  1. Sanitary Engineer - The Sanitary Engineer is the one who designs and implements construction and operating plans for systems like waste disposal (both hazardous and non-hazardous), sewage, water systems, etc. Sanitary engineers work for companies, ensuring that all sanitary regulations are being met. They also work for the government. Depending on the employer, Sanitary Engineers can earn from $36,000 to $145,000 annually. The salary depends on the type of employer.
  1. Water Treatment Specialist - The Water Treatment Specialist is an important job. They analyze water samples for signs of contamination in addition to monitoring pollution sources and levels. The Water Treatment Specialist generally works directly under an Environmental Scientist or Engineer. An MPH program graduate should have a background in the sciences, especially chemistry, if they want to be a Water Treatment Specialist. You find Water Treatment Specialists in both private companies and agencies as well as in government positions. The salary for Water Treatment Specialists varies but the average pay is $44,000 annually.
  1. Hazardous Waste Technician - The Hazardous Waste Technician is kind of like the Water Treatment Specialist. The main difference is that the focus is strictly on hazardous waste and its effects on environmental health. They monitor pollution sources and levels and study the effects on public health. They also go into the field and collect samples to bring back to the lab to be analyzed by the environmental scientist or engineer. In addition to the MPH degree, a background in sciences like chemistry is a must for the Hazardous Waste Technician. Hazardous Waste Technicians work in government positions as well as for private companies. The average annual pay for a Hazardous Waste Technician is $44,000. Of course, the pay differs from employer to employer and also with experience.

If you are considering a Masters in Public Health degree so you can work in Environmental Health, just remember that these are only five of the environmental health jobs available to you. There are many more where those came from. You can work for one of the many companies out there who hire environmental health specialists or you can work for a government agency. The career opportunities are almost endless when it comes to the field of Environmental Health. As long as you choose a job that you will enjoy and can put you in the lifestyle of your choosing, you really can't go wrong.


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