Public health nursing is a growing field offering a wide range of opportunities.

A nurse sits at a desk in front of a computer writing notes.As our communities grow, age, and change, we have a continuous need for public health professionals who are capable of helping these communities tackle health challenges. There is a demand for public health professionals who can provide communities with the knowledge and assistance they need to stay healthy. That’s why employment in public health fields, such as health education and community health, is expected to grow at a faster than average rate over the next decade.* And it’s one of the reasons public health nursing is a desirable career path.

Public health nurses possess the education and experience necessary to help improve the health of entire communities. Many of those in public health nursing hold a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree and have worked in various areas of nursing or healthcare. Most importantly, they are passionate about the public health field, developing everything from public health programs to educating at-risk communities to advocating for policy change. Public health nursing jobs include:

Public health nurse manager or director

Lead teams of public health professionals in a local, state, or national agency, or at a nonprofit organization.

Community health team leader

Work in the field, assessing health risks for specific population groups and developing programs that can deliver the healthcare services needed to address the biggest risks.

Outpatient clinic manager

Manage the operations of a local clinic where community members can seek out and receive acute care.

Director of school nursing

Lead a public or private school’s health services department, ensuring students receive the medical attention and health education they need.

Community center health coordinator

Serve the needs of your community by making sure your local health center is properly run and is providing the health services that community members need most.

Director of disaster management and preparedness programs

Specialize in crisis management and develop plans that can address the public health risks associated with disasters such as earthquakes, floods, wildfires, power blackouts, and chemical or biological attacks.

Director of health education programs

Lead a government or nonprofit organization focused on developing and delivering health education and vital health information to a local or national community.

Manager of maternal and infant public health nurse programs

Lead a government, hospital, or nonprofit program designed to ensure the health of mothers throughout pregnancy and the health of infants in their earliest days.

How Do You Become a Public Health Nurse?

One of the best ways to enter public health nursing is to earn an MSN degree. And one of the best ways to earn your master’s is through an online MSN program. When you attend nursing school online, you can earn your master’s degree in nursing from home and on a schedule designed for those working full time. It’s a great choice, whether you already have a nursing career or are looking to switch careers.

A number of online universities even offer a master’s in nursing program with a public health nursing specialization. Through this specialization option, you can gain the specific knowledge and skills you need to find a great public health nursing job. Plus, a number of online MSN programs allow you to choose an RN to MSN program, which can help you earn your master’s in public health nursing faster.

At Walden University, you can even find an online master’s in nursing program with a public health nursing specialization. Through this specialization option, you can gain the specific knowledge and skills you need to find a great public health nursing job. Plus, Walden’s MSN program allows you to choose an RN to MSN track, which can help you earn your master’s in public health nursing faster. It’s just one of the many advantages that has helped make Walden the leader in Master of Science in Nursing graduates. 

Our communities need a strong public health system. When you earn your master’s in nursing online, you can play a significant role in providing a bright future to underserved communities.

Walden University is an accredited institution offering an online Master of Science in Nursing with a specialization in Public Health Nursing program. Expand your career options and earn your degree in a convenient, flexible format that fits your busy life.


*Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2015–2016 Edition, Health Educators and Community Health Workers, on the Internet at www.bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/health-educators.htm.

†Career options may require additional experience, training, or other factors beyond the successful completion of a degree program.

‡ Source: National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) IPEDS database. Retrieved July 2017, using CIP code 51.3801 (Registered Nursing/Registered Nurse). Includes 2016 preliminary data.

Walden University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission, www.hlcommission.org.

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