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Pre-MPH Scholars Program

The University of Missouri Department of Public Health in the School of Health Professions strives to foster an inclusive and diverse community of people, cultures and abilities. We understand the importance of graduating students who not only reflect academic excellence, but also represented the diversity within the communities we serve.

The Pre-MPH Scholars Program supports underrepresented students who intend to apply to a graduate-level public health program. On-campus and online/distance students are eligible to apply.

Program Benefits

Undergraduate students selected into the Pre-MPH Scholar program receive wrap-around services to help them prepare academically and professionally for graduate school.

  • Students receive a stipend to cover expenses for enrolling in the Public Health 1000 course
  • Additional program supports include:
    • Academic tutoring
    • Mentoring from faculty and program alumni
    • Additional advising opportunities from School of Health Professions Student Services Staff
    • Enhanced professional development and employment opportunities
    • Graduate school preparation
    • Social events
  • Students who complete the program successfully are guaranteed admission to the Mizzou Master of Public Health Program along with a waived application fee.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • Be a Public Health or Health Science major in the School of Health Professions
  • Have earned at least 45 credit hours
  • Have a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or better
  • Identify as underrepresented in one or more of the following categories:
    • Race/ethnicity: As defined by the University of Missouri
    • First-generation: None of the student’s parents/guardians with whom they reside have completed a bachelor’s degree from a college or university in the United States of America
    • Financial: Student is eligible for federal Pell Grants

Due to limited spots available each year, the program will select the most competitive applicants, although all who meet program eligibility are encouraged to apply.

Maintaining Eligibility

Students selected into the Pre-MPH program must regularly participate in the following designated activities:

  • Take the Public Health 1000 course during the Summer semester before their Junior year
  • Connect with their program appointed mentors and/or advisors at least once per month
  • Communicate with Public Health faculty advisor at least once per semester
  • Participate in academic tutoring unless other arrangements are approved by program coordinators

The Pre-MPH Scholars program will work with students to provide accommodations if any difficulties arise with maintaining eligibility. Students are encouraged to reach out to the Pre-MPH Scholars Program Coordinators Turner Rafter, trafter@health.missouri.edu, and Tommy Thomas III, thomasto@health.missouri.edu, for assistance.

Program Completion

To successfully complete the Pre-MPH Scholars Program, students must:

  • Complete a baccalaureate degree from the University of Missouri in Public Health or Health Sciences
  • Achieve at least a 3.0 grade point average during the last 60 credit hours of undergraduate coursework
  • Actively participate in the majority Pre-MPH Scholars Program activities and resources

Contact Us

Turner Rafter

Turner Rafter

Pre-MPH Program Coordinator
Student Support Services Manager, Department of Public Health

Full contact information

Email Turner

Tommy Thomas III

Tommy Thomas III

Pre-MPH Program Coordinator
Diversity Initiatives Coordinator, School of Health Professions

Full contact information

Email Tommy