Public Health Disaster Science, Policy and Practice (Advanced Certificate)

Program Description

The Advanced Certificate in Public Health Disaster Science, Policy and Practice offers online and in-person options for students in good-standing who are interested in a multi-disciplinary approach to the scholarship, policies, and practices associated with preventing, preparing for, responding to, and recovering from public health disasters and complex emergencies. The Certificate requires a minimum of five courses and 15 credits.

The Advanced Certificate in Public Health Disaster Science, Policy and Practice is open to all professionals in public health or related disciplines as a stand-alone certificate. Current NYU students can complete the certificate in conjunction with the GPH Master of Public Health (MPH). 

Skills You Can Acquire

  • Develop leadership and management decision-making skills for public health and healthcare incident management
  • Develop communication and coordination skills for engaging the public and optimizing a public health emergency preparedness and response system
  • Refine disaster research skills for evaluating emergency systems, assessing the impacts of disasters on vulnerable populations, and designing interventions that enhance preparedness, response, and recovery
  • Apply systems thinking and critically analyze the design of response and recovery systems, using agent-based modeling techniques
  • Access and build a network of public health disaster practitioners and scholars
  • Connect with quality professional mentorship opportunities with committed and highly experienced certificate faculty

You Will Learn

  • The organizational aspects of public health preparedness
  • A practical understanding of threats, risks, and hazards
  • The complex systems that constitute public health emergency response systems
  • Methodological challenges to evaluating individual and system readiness, and to researching the factors associated with community, institutional, and individual resilience
  • The evolving standards of professional public health practice for preparedness and response

Who Should Enroll?

This certificate provides two paths for students: one for public health practice, and the other for the evolving field of disaster science. The program will be of particular interest to students seeking to enhance their training by gaining additional analytic tools for public health policy making, disaster research, and emergency management in public health and healthcare settings; to mid-career professionals in public health and related fields such as nursing, medicine, or public administration; and to students seeking preparation for further study in doctoral programs of public health, social and behavioral sciences, or public administration.

Students enrolled in the NYU MPH program in Community Health Science and Practice, Environmental Public Health Sciences, Epidemiology, Global Health, Public Health Nutrition, Public Health Policy & Management, Social and Behavioral Sciences and Sustainable Development Goals are eligible for this certificate. 


Current NYU GPH students should fill out the online application found here.

Non-NYU students should apply online through SOPHAS Express, the common application for schools and programs of public health. In order to be eligible for the certificate, you must hold the following:

  • Bachelor's degree or US equivalent from an accredited institution
  • Minimum 2.75 cumulative undergraduate GPA

To apply, you must submit your application as well as the following materials:

  • Scanned copies of transcripts for all post-secondary education completed, regardless of whether a degree was awarded
  • Resume or CV
  • Personal statement of no longer than 1200 words expressing a rationale for pursuing the certificate
  • 1 letter of support from either a professional or academic reference

The certificate programs are offered during the fall, spring, and summer terms and follow the NYU academic calendar.