Public Health FAQs

Public Health FAQs

I would like to remain as HAPP instead of transferring to Public Health, how do I do that?
  • The Maryland Higher Education Commision (MHEC) no longer recognizes the HAPP major at UMBC. Because of the financial and compliance issues this creates, we are no longer able to graduate students as Health Administration and Policy majors. A Public Health major is very well recognized by employers and graduate schools, and the addition of track notations on transcripts will further highlight your specialized education at UMBC.
Public Health GPA Requirement
  • Is the 2.5 GPA a requirement for the major GPA or UMBC cumulative GPA? — It is a cumulative GPA requirement.
  • What happens if I fall below the required GPA?You will receive notification that your GPA has fallen below the 2.5 cumulative GPA required for Public Health. If this is your first notification, you will need to raise your cumulative GPA above 2.5 next semester in order to remain in Public Health. If this is your second consecutive notification, you will no longer be permitted to remain a Public Health major and must speak with someone regarding other major options.
How to Change My Track or Add a Second Track
  • I am a Public Health major and want to declare a track or multiple tracks, or I do not see my track listed on my transcript, how do I list my track(s)? — Fill out the Declaration of Major form and submit this to the Registrar’s office. Note “current Public Health BA” in the major field and your track in the track field if you are a current Public Health major. You do not need an advisor’s signature. New students and change of majors must have an advisor signature in order to declare a Public Health BA and track.
  • I am a HAPP minor and I want to add a track, how do I do that? — HAPP minors do not have the option of declaring tracks at this time.
How to Change Current Major to Public Health
  • How do I change my major to Public Health? — Students need a cumulative 2.5 GPA to change to Public Health If you meet this requirement, you should make an appointment with our Coordinator of Advising, Debbie Sanford. 
How to Declare HAPP/Public Health Minor
  • How do I declare the HAPP minor? — Students should submit the Declaration of Major form to the Registrar’s office. Students do not need an advisor signature to declare a minor.
  • I am a HAPP minor and would like to change to a Public Health minor, how do I do that? — The Public Health minor will not be available to declare until 2022.
Public Health Dual Programs
  • If I’m in the Public Health program can I enter into the BA/MA with sociology? — Yes, refer to the BA/MA requirements and make an appointment to discuss with your advisor.
  • If I’m in the Public Health program can I use courses to enter into the BA/MPP? Yes, refer to the BA/MPP requirements and make an appointment to discuss with your advisor.
  • Is there a program for the Public Health/SOWK major? — Yes, see the course listing for HAPP/SOWK double major. The Public Health/SOWK double major is still being finalized.
  • Are there any other dual degree programs that Public Health students can apply for? — Yes, there are other programs at UMBC that may be of interest to Public Health students. Contact your advisor for more information on Health IT, Emergency Health Services, and other graduate and accelerated programs at UMBC. There are also undergraduate certificates and minors, such as the Social Dimensions of Health certificate and the Health IT certificate that can complement your Public Health BA.
The Internship
  • Why is the required internship a 6 credit course? — The internship course integrates components of the previous internship (5 credits) and the internship seminar (1 credit), for a total of 6 credits.
  • How do I register for an internship and what are the internship deadlines and important dates? — Please refer to our “Internships” tab
  • How can I find out more information about the internship orientation sessions? — Eligible students are sent emails and flyers are distributed posted on groups and within the department.  
The Public Health Curriculum
  • How do I find a list of Public Health courses that can be used towards the electives in the program? — All of the Public Health courses are listed in the undergraduate catalog and every semester you can see which will be offered by looking in the schedule of classes. You can use any Public Health course as an elective, except the ones in the core and your track. You may also use upper level (300 or 400 level) ANTH or SOCY classes as electives. Talk with your advisor about which ANTH or SOCY classes would complement your Public Health degree.
  • I am in the academic program, I have already taken ENG 393, do I still need to take HAPP 340? — No you may use either ENGL 393 or HAPP 340.
  • ENGL 393 is Writing Intensive (WI). If I choose to take HAPP 340 instead for the HAPP core, will that fulfill my Writing Intensive requirement for the university? No, HAPP 340 is not WI. You can check the schedule of classes for WI courses offered each semester.
  • I am in the Public Health program and I need to take HAPP 300. It has a requirement of 2.5 GPA.  What do I do if my GPA is less than 2.5? — You must raise your GPA over a 2.5. You can make an appointment with your advisor if you would like to discuss strategies to try to improve your GPA.
  • If I’m in the Public Health program can I use Natural Science courses from my Biology major for Public Health elective requirements? — BIOL 251 is the only science that can be used to fulfill a Public Health elective course in the Public Health requirements.
  • My past/current courses are listed as HAPP instead of Public Health (PBHL), what should I do? — As a Public Health major you will take the course numbers as listed on your curriculum plan, whether they are HAPP or PBHL. You do not need to do anything, either set of call letters will fulfill the requirements.
  • I am not sure what track to take? What do I do? — Make an appointment to discuss with your advisor.
Career and Resume Help
Scholarship/Awards
  • Where can I find out more information about scholarships and awards? — The National Institutes of Health (NIH) offers an Undergraduate Scholarship Program. You may also refer to our “Awards” tab for more information on department awards.
Student Organizations
  • Are there any student organizations that I can join as a Public Health major? — Yes, see information on the main Public Health page about our council of majors (HAPP COM) and the American Mock World Health Organizations (AMWHO). There are other organizations around campus that are engaged in health related activities. Check out the UMBC Campus Life website for more information on student organizations.