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Online Master of Public Health


The Online MPH program is designed for working professionals who want to become leaders in public health. A new class of about 30 students starts the program each fall and spring.

Application Dates and Deadlines

The application deadline for spring 2023 is September 30, 2022. After the application deadlines, applications may be accepted on a space-available basis. Before applying for rolling admissions, please email to confirm availability.

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college or university in the United States or its equivalent from a foreign institution
  • A minimum 3.0 grade point average (on a 4.0 scale) for the last 60 graded semester credits or the last 90 graded quarter credits (students with less than a 3.0 GPA will be considered on a case-by-case basis)
  • Two or more years of professional experience, preferably related to public health. This can include volunteer work and be non-continuous (e.g., six months here, 12 months there). It’s the experience that counts, not the employment.
  • Demonstrated English language proficiency for applicants whose native language is not English

You must also be able to attend the two required multi-day sessions at our location in downtown Seattle. For more information, see Program Format.

Required Application Materials

  • UW Graduate School online application and fee
  • Unofficial transcripts from every college or university where you've earned a degree or taken relevant coursework
  • Resume or curriculum vitae
  • Statement of purpose
  • Personal statement
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Proof of English language proficiency if English is not your native language (see International Applicants)

Application Steps

To apply to the Online MPH program, you'll submit your application materials online through the UW Graduate School website. We recommend you begin your application early in order to complete all requirements on time.

The program does not currently participate in the SOPHAS common application service. 

Step One: Prepare to Apply

Obtain transcripts from each college or university where you've earned a degree or taken relevant coursework. Download unofficial transcripts or scan printed copies.

Update your resume or curriculum vitae.

Write your statement of purpose. In a narrative statement of about 700–1,000 words, please provide the following:

  • Your long-term career goals and how an MPH degree will help you achieve them.
  • Reasons for seeking admission to the Online MPH degree at the University of Washington.
  • Relevant background experience that demonstrates your readiness for the Online MPH degree program.

Write your personal statement. The University of Washington is committed to excellence through diversity, and our program's curriculum promotes an understanding of the means by which social inequities and racism, generated by power and privilege, undermine health. We welcome students who have varied cultural experiences and who will contribute to the intellectual and social enrichment of our program. In a one- to two-page statement, please describe your personal history, family background and influences on your intellectual development that have shaped your understanding and commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion. This statement may include social, cultural, economic and educational opportunities you've had, or disadvantages that you've overcome, and the ways that these experiences have affected you.

Identify people who are willing to write letters of recommendation for you. You'll need to submit three letters of recommendation as part of your application. Consider asking current or former employers or supervisors. Make sure the people you choose can speak to your potential for leadership in public health. You'll need their email addresses for the Graduate School application.

Apply for an application fee waiver if you qualify. The University of Washington grants fee waivers to McNair Scholars, PPIA Fellows and to applicants on the basis of financial need. See the Graduate School's Admissions FAQs page for more information and application instructions. The Department of Health Systems and Population Health offers fee waivers to AmeriCorps alumni, Peace Corps alumni, veterans and applicants from other programs. As part of our commitment to making education accessible to students from all backgrounds, we're also offering waivers for applicants who attend one of our info sessions. See our policy for more information and the application form. You must request a fee waiver before you apply for admission. 

Step Two: Apply

Start your online application to the UW Graduate School. You can save your application and come back to it at any time to continue working on it.

Select "Health Services (MPH – Online Degree Program)" as the program name.

Upload all required documents.

Designate the people who have agreed to write letters of recommendation for you. Each of these people will be sent an email directing them to a secure website where they will submit their letters.

Apply for Online MPH program awards, if you are eligible. The applications for the HSEED Award and Public Health Leadership Promise Award (previously titled the Director’s Choice Award) are located within the Online MPH program application.

HSEED Award Application
The Health Services Excellence, Equity and Distinction (HSEED) Award recognizes incoming students for their outstanding academic merit, diversity of experiences and backgrounds, and potential for leadership in public health. This award offers $5,000 to one incoming Online MPH student, distributed over a nine-month period. For eligibility criteria, see the HSEED Award website. To apply, please provide a one-page letter addressed to Dr. Miruna Petrescu-Prahova stating how you are eligible for the HSEED Award. Recipients will be notified before the fall quarter begins. 

Public Health Leadership Promise Award Application
The Public Health Leadership Promise Award recognizes students who have shown potential for leadership in public health and a commitment to serving others. The award offers $3,000 to incoming Online MPH students in one lump sum during their quarter of entry to the program. To apply, please provide no more than a one-page letter addressed to Dr. Miruna Petrescu-Prahova articulating your understanding of public health leadership, what aspect(s) of your leadership skills you want to grow during your time in the Online MPH program, and one to three specific examples of past and present leadership experience. Recipients will be notified at the time they receive their admissions decision if they have been selected as an award recipient.

Pay the nonrefundable application fee and submit your application.

International Applicants

The Online MPH program only accepts applications from students who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents or who have or will obtain a non-student visa that allows them to study in the U.S.: H-4 (dependent of H1B work visa), dependents of H2B visa holders, etc.

The Online MPH program does not sponsor visas. Students who require an international student visa (e.g., F-1, J-1) are not eligible to apply to this program because the program requires students to attend at least two of three in-person sessions in Seattle. Applicants on an F-2 visa may be eligible — see information for F-2 applicants on the Graduate School’s Admission FAQs page. 

International applicants must meet all application requirements for the program. Applicants whose native language is not English must demonstrate English language proficiency. If required, please submit TOEFL scores. Only scores less than two years old at the time of the application deadline will be accepted. Scores must be sent directly to UW by the Educational Testing Service using institution code 4854. As of July 2021, the Graduate School will also accept International English Language Testing System (IELTS) test scores, with 6.5 as the minimum required score and 7.0 as the recommended score.

For more information on applying as an international student, see the Graduate School's International Applicant Information page.

Undocumented Applicants

The Online MPH program welcomes applications from undocumented individuals. The Graduate Opportunities and Minority Achievement Program (GO-MAP) offers application guidance and resources. The Leadership Without Borders Center provides resources for undocumented students at the University of Washington, including information on financial aid and scholarships. 

Graduate Nonmatriculated Students

If you aren't sure yet whether you want to pursue the Online MPH degree, you might consider enrolling first as a graduate nonmatriculated (GNM) student. GNM status allows you to take a limited number of courses to find out if the program is right for you.

Although GNM status does not guarantee admission to the Online MPH program, you may apply up to 12 credits toward degree requirements if you later apply and are admitted to the Online MPH program.

To apply to be a GNM student, you must submit an online application through the Graduate School during the regular application period. Choose:

Application Type: Graduate Non-Matriculated

Program Name: Health Systems and Population Health (MPH – Online Degree Program)

You can start as a GNM student any quarter. Below are the deadlines to apply for GNM status in order to start the following quarter. 

Program Schedule 20212022

To Begin Apply By
Autumn Quarter 2021 August 30, 2021
Winter Quarter 2022 December 6, 2021
Spring Quarter 2022 March 1, 2022
Summer Quarter 2022 May 23, 2022

For more information, see the Department of Health Systems and Population Health's Graduate Nonmatriculated and Nonmatriculated Status page or contact us to discuss your options.