Early Entry for the Master of Public Health Degree


For GMercyU undergraduates, complete your bachelor's and Master of Public Health degree in as few as five years!

Early Entry to the Online Master of Public Health (MPH) program allows eligible Gwynedd Mercy University undergraduate students to begin work towards their MPH degree during their senior year. Courses in the MPH program are offered online.

The Early Entry option is available to GMercyU students majoring in:

  • Biology
  • Criminal Justice
  • Digital Communications
  • History
  • Occupational Science
  • Philosophy
  • Psychology
  • Public Health
  • Social Work

Students approved for Early Entry to the MPH program may complete both degrees, bachelor and master, as a five-year (4+1) accelerated degree program (BS/MPH or BA/MPH).

Admission Requirements

  • Completed at least 72 credits before application 
  • Minimum 3.2 GPA 
  • Room to take at least one graduate MPH course as an elective in the senior year. 
  • Personal statement describing interest in pursuing graduate studies in public health
  • Reference letter from academic advisor or other faculty member that speaks to academic ability and readiness for graduate level work. 
    • Note: Academic advisor will need to approve coursework in the Early Entry to the MPH program.
  • Submit your application essay and reference to public health program director Sharla Willis, willis.s@gmercyu.edu, and schedule a meeting to discuss your application. 


Eligible Courses

Students approved for Early Entry to the MPH program may select from the following courses:

  • PUB 600 Foundations of Public Health and Health Equity 
    • This course is required to be the first course taken by all non-Public Health majors
    • Public Health majors are not required to take this course, though they may choose to take it
  • PUB 610 Public Health Analytic Methods I
  • PUB 620 Health Equity: Policy & Advocacy
  • PUB 630 Public Health Analytic Methods II
  • PUB 640 Planning and Managing Public Health Interventions

These core courses address the Foundational Public Health Competencies and will prepare students for their Applied Practice Experience and future coursework. Students will meet with the public health program director before each semester to discuss course selection before registering. Students must maintain an overall 3.0 GPA and a 3.0 GPA in the MPH courses to continue in the program.

Double Counting Credits

Students approved for Early Entry will have provisional acceptance to the MPH program and be able to “double count” up to 12 credits of public health courses towards both their undergraduate and graduate degrees. These graduate-level courses may be substituted for undergraduate electives to count towards the required credit hours of the bachelor’s degree, and will be included in the undergraduate tuition and fees. The same courses may be counted towards the requirements for the MPH degree.

Deadline

GMercyU undergraduates must decide by spring of your junior year so that you can begin the MPH coursework during your senior year. 

Contact

Please talk to your advisor about this option. If you have any questions about GMercyU's online Master of Public Health degree, please contact Program Director Sharla Willis, DrPH, at willis.s@gmercyu.edu.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I really complete both degrees in 5 years?

Yes. The Early Entry to the MPH 4+1 program allows students to accelerate their progress towards the master’s degree by allowing them to complete some of their graduate coursework early. If students take 6-12 MPH credits before graduating with their BS or BA degree, they will be able to complete the MPH degree within an additional 12 months by taking 9-12 graduate credits per semester (summer, fall, and spring).

Do I have to complete the MPH within one year after graduating with my BS or BA degree?

No. Students may progress in the Master of Public Health online at a pace that fits with their preference and schedule. Full-time (9-12 credits per semester) and part-time students (3-6 credits per semester) are welcome.

Can I apply to the Early Entry to the MPH program if I am not a Public Health major?

Yes. Early Entry to the MPH online program is open to students of any major who meet the application criteria, and whose program is listed below:

Programs that will permit their eligible students to take graduate MPH courses in lieu of an elective:

  • Biology, B.S.
  • Criminal Justice, B.S.
  • Digital Communications, B.S.
  • History, B.A.
  • Occupational Science, B.S.
  • Philosophy, B.A.
  • Psychology, B.S. or B.A.
  • Public Health, B.S.
  • Social Work, B.S.W.
What happens after I graduate with my undergraduate degree?

Final admission into the MPH online program is automatically granted to those approved for Early Entry upon completion of the bachelor’s degree if they have maintained at least a 3.0 GPA overall and a 3.0 GPA in the graduate MPH courses. 

What happens if I decide not to complete the MPH degree requirements?

Students may choose not to continue in the MPH program after receiving their bachelor’s degree. This will not affect their undergraduate transcript or degree. To earn the Master of Public Health degree, students will need to complete the requirements for the MPH.

Will the graduate courses I take as an undergraduate count towards a graduate program at another university?

Credits earned as part of the Early Entry to the MPH program will count towards your MPH at Gwynedd Mercy University. Any questions related to transfer credits to another university would need to be answered by that university.

Can I take my MPH courses in person during my senior year?

No. The Masters of Public Health program is a fully online, asynchronous program. All of your MPH courses will be online, even those taken during the Early Entry period. The public health program director and full time faculty are on campus, though, so you can meet with them in person or remotely. Adjunct faculty are available to meet with students remotely.