Health Society & Policy
The Health, Society and Policy (HSP) Program addresses the multidimensional characteristics of human health. Health status may be related to factors beyond pathogens or illness: lifestyle, environmental exposures, socioeconomic status, cultural affiliation, poor communication, or access to health services can all contribute to an individual’s health. Students in this program are given the broad, interdisciplinary foundation for understanding health, allowing them to sensitively and effectively address health care issues in multidimensional contexts: for example, the geographic location, literacy, or socioeconomic status of an individual might impact their ability to access or obtain healthcare or eat a healthy diet. HSP students take courses from a variety of fields, including epidemiology, behavioral sciences, research methods and quantitative skills, administration, philosophy, and history. This coursework provides students with a coherent perspective on health care in its various social and administrative contexts. The culminating experience of the program is a capstone, delivered as an interdisciplinary series of seminars on a particular theme related to the major.
The Student Experience
To enrich your HSP studies, consider completing a health-related internship in a field of your choosing through the College of Social & Behavioral Science, or the Hinckley Institute of Politics. You can also get involved directly with service opportunities, Learning Abroad, leadership groups, or research projects with a faculty mentor. Many students also join student organizations related to their career plans—such as academic groups for premed, pre-physician assisting, pre-law, and many others.
The HSP major prepares students for a diverse set of careers in health administration, public health, health policy, and research. Approximately 40 percent of HSP graduates go on to apply to graduate professional and academic degree programs, such as medical school. U alumni have found employment in hospital and clinic administrative positions, non-profit organizations, city and county health departments, and laboratory and research settings.
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