Public Health Schools and MPH Programs in Florida

Students who wish to pursue a Master of Public Health program in Florida have many options to choose from. Not only is Florida home to 10 schools that offer MPH programs on campus and online, but many of those public health schools in Florida have research programs that may offer valuable opportunities to students. 

With Florida’s high statewide population and higher-than-national-average prevalence of health issues like drug overdoses and HIV and AIDS, there are plenty of opportunities for MPH students and graduates to make a difference in the state.

There are many concentrations to choose from the above CEPH-accredited MPH programs in Florida. These specialties may help prepare you for various kinds of public health careers.

Public Health Schools and Highlights in Florida

With 10 schools offering a variety of MPH programs in Florida, you’ll have plenty of programs to choose from. Programs are available in on-campus, online and hybrid formats to accommodate various scheduling needs. Many of these schools also offer dual degree programs that may allow you to save time as you progress toward your career. 

Bethune-Cookman University Petrock College of Health Sciences

640 Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune Boulevard, Daytona Beach, FL 32114

In 1904, Mary McLeod Bethune opened the Daytona Literary and Industrial Training School for Negro Girls with just five students. During Dr. Bethune’s lifetime, the school underwent several stages of growth. In 2006, the first master’s program was added, and in 2007 the school achieved university status. Today, Bethune-Cookman University offers 45 degree programs, and has a student body of 2,845 students and a 15:1 student-to-faculty ratio. 

Dedicated to achieving wellness in diverse communities, the Petrock College of Health Sciences offers both undergraduate and graduate degree programs. In addition to the MPH program, the university also offers a B.S. in Aging Studies and a B.S. in Health and Exercise Science. Students can pursue research opportunities such as a study that examines the health disparities between African American and non-Hispanic white women living with knee osteoarthritis.


Florida A&M University College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Institute of Public Health

1415 S. Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard, Tallahassee, FL 32307

Established in 1887, Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University offers an affordable education with the goal of fostering social and economic opportunity for students who might not have otherwise had the chance to earn a college degree. 

The Florida Legislature created the Florida A&M University Institute of Public Health in 1995. In 2020, Dean Johnnie L. Early II led the charge towards a name change to reflect the heightened significance of public health in the College. The name of the College is now the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences; Institute of Public Health. 

Students are able to receive specialized training, field placements and the ability to participate in collaborative projects with faculty at the university’s Florida Public Health Training Center. 


Florida International University Robert Stempel College of Public Health & Social Work

11200 SW 8th Street AHC5, Miami, FL 33199

Florida International University (FIU) opened in 1972, and has since become renowned for its research. According to the University, Washington Monthly recognized FIU as a top-50 national public university, and its research has more than $200 million in expenditures each year. 

The FIU Robert Stempel College of Public Health & Social Work offers many research concentrations including health disparities, asthma, public health policy analysis, health economics, health systems analysis and more. In 2019, its FIU’s research portfolio reached more than $21 million from grants and new research projects. The National Institutes of Health recognized the Stempel College’s School of Public Health as the 19th most funded health program at a public university.


Florida State University College of Social Sciences & Public Policy

PO Box 3062160, 113 Collegiate Loop, Tallahassee, FL 32306

Founded in 1851, Florida State University holds the distinction of being the oldest site of continuous higher education in the state. Today, it supports a student body of more than 41,000, and offers 297 degree programs. 

The College of Social Sciences & Public Policy offers both undergraduate and graduate degree programs. In addition to a traditional MPH program, which trains students primarily as health policy analysts, the university offers a combined BS/MPH program that allows students to save time while earning their MPH degree. 

FSU reports that its graduate students have earned many internship placements, including with the Florida Department of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration. 


Nova Southeastern University Dr. Kiran C. Patel College of Osteopathic Medicine

3301 College Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33314

Nova Southeastern University was chartered as a graduate institution in 1964. It has since evolved to encompass colleges of Pharmacy, Allied Health, Medical Sciences and more. The Dr. Kiran C. Patel College of Osteopathic Medicine offers an online and in-person Master of Public Health program, as well as doctoral degree programs in multiple fields. 

The college is staffed by nearly 150 full-time and 1,200 adjunct professors, and community-based partnerships give students additional learning opportunities. With the Consortium for Excellence in Medical Education, students can explore internships, residencies and fellowships to prepare them for their careers.


University of Florida College of Public Health & Health Professions

1225 Center Drive, Gainesville, FL 32610

The University of Florida was founded in 1858 as the Gainesville Academy. Today, the university encompasses a 2,000-acre campus and attracts $900 million in research annually. The College of Public Health & Health Professions offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral programs. 

The college has a thriving research base and received $36 million in research awards from 2019 to 2020. Faculty research projects include topics like sport concussions, muscular dystrophy and suicidal ideation. The college also delivers community service locally, nationally and internationally thanks to pro bono services offered by students, as well as service projects. 


University of Miami Miller School of Medicine Department of Public Health Sciences 

1120 NW 14th Street, CRB 906, Miami, FL 33136

The University of Miami is a private research university that was established in 1925. Today, the university encompasses 11 schools and colleges that offer more than 180 majors and programs to more than 17,000 students. 

According to the Blue Ridge Institute for Medical Research, the Miller School of Medicine is the No. 1 most NIH-funded institution in the state. The school consists of 28 departments and has 41 full-time faculty involved in global research projects in such topics as cancer epidemiology, justice system reform and tobacco control. 

The university also has more than a dozen research centers including the Brief Strategic Family Therapy Institute, the Center for Health Services Research and Adolescent Drug Abuse, the Florida Institute for Health Innovation and the Hispanic Community Health Study. 


University of North Florida Brooks College of Health

1 UNF Drive, Jacksonville, FL 32224

Established in 1969, the University of North Florida is a public university situated on a 1,381-acre campus. Nearly 4,000 students graduate from the university annually, and they can choose from 60 undergraduate, 36 graduate and five doctoral programs. 

The Brooks College of Health prepares students to work in both public and private settings, and public health students may pursue both field experience and study abroad opportunities. 

The Our Campus, Our Health health behavior assessment is conducted every two years and gives students the opportunity to help with data analysis, to compile and present the results and to help promote behavior change on campus. 


University of South Florida College of Public Health

3010 USF Banyan Circle, Tampa, FL 33612

The University of South Florida (USF) was founded in 1956 and has campuses in Tampa, St. Petersburg and Sarasota-Manatee. More than 50,000 students from 141 countries attend the university’s 13 colleges, and 42% of students identify as African American, American Indian, Asian, Hispanic, Native Hawaiian, Other Pacific Islander or multiracial.

The College of Public Health includes 12 centers and institutes to address essential public health areas including violence prevention, behavioral health and maternal and child health. In addition to undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degree programs, the College of Public Health offers 19 certificate programs. The college also offers nearly 100 online courses. 

Students have the opportunity to enroll in study abroad courses and international field experiences in more than 20 countries including Uganda, Belize, Ecuador and Panama.


University of West Florida Usha Kundu, MD College of Health

11000 University Parkway, Pensacola, FL 32514

Established in 1963, the University of West Florida (UWF) has a student body of more than 13,000. The university has two campuses: a 1,600-acre UWF Pensacola Campus and a UWF Emerald Coast campus in Fort Walton Beach, which offers curriculums specifically for students who have already earned 60 or more semester hours.

 The Usha Kundu, MD College of Health offers undergraduate and graduate degrees, as well as certificate programs in public health and health sciences and administration fields. Graduate degrees include three public health specialties, as well as programs in healthcare administration, nursing, psychology, movement sciences and more. 


Online MPH Programs in Florida

In addition to offering on-campus programs, the University of West Florida, University of South Florida, Florida International University and Florida A&M University offer online MPH programs. An online MPH in Florida may offer flexibility and convenience to help you pursue your education while still meeting your work and life obligations, and without having to relocate. There are many available concentrations for online MPH programs to choose from. 

Public Health Careers Outlook in Florida

Public health career salaries in Florida are slightly lower than the United States average, but salaries vary significantly from location to location within Florida. 

The Palm Bay, Melbourne and Titusville area is one of the highest-paying areas for public health careers in Florida, with annual median salaries for health informatics specialist being $84,980, while occupational health and safety specialists’ median salaries are $84,960 in the same area, according to data from O*NET OnLine. Those same professions have lower median salaries in the Cape Coral and Fort Myers areas. In those locations, health informatics specialists earn a median annual salary of $73,320, while occupational health and safety specialists earn a median annual salary of $56,170. 

For more Florida public health career salary and job growth data, take a look at the table below. All information comes from O*NET OnLine.

Job TitleMedian Salary in FL, 2020 (Yearly)Median Salary in U.S., 2020 (Yearly)Projected Job Growth in FL, 2018–2028Projected Job Growth in U.S., 2019–2029
Health Specialities Professors
Environmental Health Specialists
Medical and Health Services Managers/Healthcare Administrators
Health Educators
Occupational Health Specialist
Medical Records and Health Information Technicians
Dietitians and Nutritionists
Health Informatics Specialists 

*Estimate not released/provided by O*NET

Specializations to Consider in Florida

While it may be helpful to choose a specialization that you’re passionate about, certain specializations may also qualify you for higher-paying positions. Pursuing a healthcare organization and management or health policies and programs specialization might prepare you for a career as a medical and health service manager or in healthcare administration. These are some of the highest-paying MPH-related fields in Florida. Additionally, employment of medical and health services managers is expected to increase 32% through 2029 in the United States, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). That growth is driven by increased demand for healthcare services as the baby boomer population ages, the BLS reports. 

Organizations to Work for With a Public Health Degree

There are many organizations in Florida related to public health. These might be potential employers after you graduate with a public health degree. 

  • Florida Alcohol and Drug Abuse Association (FADAA): A non-profit membership association representing substance abuse prevention and treatment providers, managing entities and community anti-drug coalitions, FADAA provides community resources and administers special programs and projects, like an ER Intervention project to respond to the opioid crisis.
  • Florida Behavioral Health Association (FBHA): A leader in behavioral health policy and practice in Florida, FBHA is the state’s largest trade association representing community treatment providers. The organization trains professionals, promotes legislation and educates the public on behavioral health. 
  • Florida Department of Health: The department includes a state health office, 67 county health departments, 22 children’s medical services offices and more, all working together to promote a culture of health throughout the state.
  • Florida Dietetic Association: This association of dietetic and nutrition professionals is the largest in the state and for nearly 83 years has worked to help its members promote nutrition and health to residents of Florida. 
  • Florida Health Care Association (FHCA): Founded in 1954, FHCA’s membership includes more than 80% of the state’s nursing centers, along with long-term care facilities and more than a thousand individuals working to ensure quality elder care in the state. 
  • Florida Health Justice Project: Dedicated to advocating for expanded healthcare access and health equity for vulnerable residents, the Florida Health Justice Project focuses on non-partisan research, policy advocacy, outreach and education.
  • Florida Institute for Health Innovation: This non-profit organization focuses on innovation and collaborative change as means of improving community health. 
  • Florida Medical Association: The state medical association advocates for physicians and patients, promoting public health and high medical practice standards and representing more than 25,000 members in legislative and public health matters.
  • Florida Network of Youth and Family Services: The Florida Network supports homeless, runaway and troubled youth ages six and older and their families, working to keep families together and providing early intervention services. 

State Health Information

With its large population and several specific health risks, Florida has a ways to go in improving public health. According to the Census Bureau, Florida’s estimated population as of July 1, 2019 was 21,477,737

The Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) identifies several public health risks for the state. In 2019, Florida experienced a drug overdose rate of 25.5 deaths per 100,000 people, which is higher than the national average of 21.6 deaths. Florida also has higher-than-average rates of HIV and AIDS diagnoses among adults and adolescents. In 2019, Florida reported 23.9 HIV diagnoses per 100,000 people, compared to the national average of 12.9. Florida also reported 11.3 AIDS diagnoses per 100,000 people in 2018, nearly double the U.S. average of 6.2 diagnoses per 100,000 people. 

This data suggests that there are opportunities for public health professionals to help improve health and wellness throughout the state of Florida.

This page includes information from O*NET OnLine by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA). Used under the CC BY 4.0 license. O*NET® is a trademark of USDOL/ETA.

Information last updated July 2021