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SLU Introduces Public Health and Physician Assistant Dual Master’s Degree

Saint Louis University (SLU) will begin offering a dual graduate degree including the Master of Public Health (MPH) and the Physician Assistant (PA) Master of Medical Science (MMS) degree in the 2021-2022 academic year. Students pursuing the dual degree will begin by taking MPH classes followed by PA classes, with three classes overlapping both programs which makes the program faster than taking the two programs independently.

PA Students in a Patient Room
The SLU PA/MPH dual degree will be available beginning with the 2021-2022 school year.

SLU PA Associate Professor Genevieve DelRosario, MHS, PA-C, explained why the two programs wanted to create this dual degree.

 “Many physicians are now earning MPH degrees,” DelRosario said. “The addition of an MPH allows students to have a broader understanding of public and population health in general, and would be particularly useful to students who want to work with underserved populations in federally funded clinics, public health departments, etc.”

 DelRosario went on to explain how the dual degree could help these students advance in their future workplaces.

 “The PA/MPH dual degree also gives students a ‘big picture’ understanding that will prepare them to be leaders in their clinics and in the profession as a whole. I think it is a great opportunity for our students,” DelRosario said.

 Director of the SLU MPH program Anne Sebert Kuhlmann, Ph.D., MPH, agreed that the two degrees involved in this dual degree program complement each other in a way that is incredibly beneficial to students.

 “The dual degree program enables students to engage and pursue evidence-based and interdisciplinary studies at the intersection of health and community,” Dr. Sebert Kuhlmann said. “By completing both degrees, students develop the clinical, research, intervention and policy skills that focus on medicine within the context of the major issues and concerns of public health.”

 As a result of challenges that arose during, and due to, the COVID-19 pandemic, three students were selected to pilot the dual degree program beginning in June of 2020.

For more information about the PA/MPH dual degree, contact dchs@health.slu.edu.

Saint Louis University is a Catholic, Jesuit institution that values academic excellence, life-changing research, compassionate health care, and a strong commitment to faith and service. Founded in 1818, the University fosters the intellectual and character development of nearly 13,000 students on two campuses in St. Louis and Madrid, Spain. Building on a legacy of more than 200 years, Saint Louis University continues to move forward with an unwavering commitment to a higher purpose, a greater good.