Community Health Education
Promoting healthy lifestyles and communities.
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The Community Health Education (CHE) program prepares students to work with individuals, groups, and communities to promote health and prevent disease and disability. Students develop professional skills and competencies that include:
- assessing individual and community needs
- planning and implementing health education programs
- evaluating the effectiveness of health education programs
- coordinating health education services
- acting as a resource person for reliable and valid health information
- advocacy and communication of health needs and information to multiple audiences in socially and culturally appropriate ways
Career Opportunities in Community Health
- Medical care facilities: work with patients and their families to provide education about the impact of a diagnosis on a patient's lifestyle and to develop a behavior change plan to best manage an illness. Direct patients to outside resources and create education materials such as brochures, web sites, or patient education classes. Job titles might include: Patient Advocate, Patient Education Coordinator, Community Health Educator, Prevention Specialist.
- Colleges and Universities: often housed within Student Health Services, work to develop and deliver programs and educational materials on health topics most relevant to college students. May train and work with peer educators. Job titles might include: Health Educator, Substance Abuse Educator, Prevention Program Director, Sexuality Educator, Health & Wellness Coordinator, Health Promotion Programmer.
- Public Health settings: employed by state and local health departments, often administer state-mandated programs. Develop and distribute education materials, assist in grant writing/funding requests, policy work, and conduct program evaluations. Job titles might include: Health Program Coordinator, Prevention Specialist, Program Evaluator, Program Specialist, Health Policy Analyst.
- Non-profit community health organizations: provide the public with health information and education about available resources, create educational materials, organize health-related screenings and activities, form and/or lead community coalitions and policy work. Job titles might include: Community Health Educator, Health Outreach Coordinator, Community Organizer, Health Education Specialist, Social Services Coordinator, Program Specialist.
- Private business: create programs and services for employees to provide health information, access to services, or skill building. Job titles might include: Health & Wellness Coordinator, Prevention Specialist, Health Promotion Programmer, Health Resource Specialist, Worksite Health Educator.
- Foundation for beginning advanced/graduate level work in: Public Health (M.P.H.), Physical Therapy, Nursing, Occupational Therapy or other allied health fields.