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DrPH Public Health Policy & Management Admissions Criteria


  • The DrPH program is designed for students who have a previously awarded Master's degree, preferably a Master of Public Health, and at least two years of public health experience
  • GPA of 3.2 or higher
  • GRE scores (combined verbal and quantitative score of 310 is considered competitive)*
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Resume or CV
  • Statement of purpose and objectives
  • Policy statement
  • Writing sample
  • Mission and values statement
  • Resilience statement (optional)
  • GRE score are waived for Fall 2024 admissions
  • TOEFL or IELTS scores for international applicants
  • The PHPM faculty expertise is domestically focused on public health policy at the local, state, and regional levels. The program is intended for those looking for a career path within the U.S. system, targeting advocacy, rural health, and governmental affairs within Arizona and the Southwest region. Please make sure these align with your intended career path and interests before submitting an application.

More Information

Academic Background

The program is designed for students who have a previously awarded Master's degree, preferably a Master of Public Health, and at least two years of public health experience. Admitted students who do not have a previous MPH degree will be required to complete the 5 core MPH courses once admitted to the DrPH program.

A GPA of 3.2 or higher is required for the DrPH program. The GPA is calculated based on the last 60 undergraduate units, or if the applicant has 12 or more graduate units, the GPA will be based on graduate units.

Applicants are required to send official transcripts from any college or university attended to SOPHAS at PO Box 9111; Watertown, MA 02471.

GRE Scores are waived for Fall 2024 admissions​

Combined verbal and quantitative score of 310 is considered competitive. The analytical writing portion of the GRE is required when submitting scores. GRE scores may be reported directly to the University of Arizona College of Public Health/SOPHAS, which is code #4253. For more information about the GRE, visit the GRE website.

Letters of Recommendation

Applicants must provide a minimum of three letters of recommendation from academic advisors, professors, supervisors, mentors or anyone else familiar with their academic and/or professional ability. Letters should be submitted to SOPHAS electronically.

Resume or CV

Applicants are asked to submit a resume or CV outlining their academic and professional experience and achievements.

Statement of Purpose and Objectives

The personal statement (maximum of 1500 words) should include:

  • Why you are interested in the DrPH program
  • Specific areas of interest in public health related to either public health policy and management or maternal and child health
  • Reason for selection of this program
  • Academic and professional background, including experience/expertise with public health related topics
  • Future goals and objectives

Please note that some schools of public health use software to detect plagiarism in statements of purpose. It is important to ensure that an applicant’s statement is written in their own words and, when appropriate, that quotations and citations/references are used for a direct quote.

Policy Statement

Using 500 words or less, DrPH applicants should articulate the policy agenda that motivates their pursuit of doctoral training. Applicants are encouraged to describe the specific public health problem they hope to address, the affected population or community they hope to serve; and, the potential policy tools/techniques they hope to utilize. Applicants should also suggest faculty who could mentor their work. Faculty profiles are available at  

Writing Sample

The writing sample may be a paper, article, or report written within the last two years that demonstrates the applicant's analytical and writing skills. Applicants may submit their writing sample electronically via SOPHAS.

Faculty Advisor

One of the most important pieces of an application to a doctoral program at the College of Public Health is finding a faculty advisor whose research interests and areas of expertise align with your interests.  Through the admissions process, the College of Public Health seeks to ensure that we have sufficient faculty with relevant research experience to effectively mentor you through your doctoral program and your dissertation.

Please research the faculty in this program and outline which faculty members you hope to work with in your Research Statement (see above).  Given that faculty commitments change from year to year, we strongly recommend that you list at least two faculty with whom you would like to work.  Although you are welcome to contact specific faculty to discuss our program and your goals, it is not necessary for you to communicate with faculty before or during the application process.

Mission and Values Statement

In 250 words or less (1,250 characters), please describe how you would embrace and support the Mission and the Values of the University of Arizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health.

  • Our Mission:  The Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health is dedicated to promoting the health of individuals and communities in the southwest and globally with an emphasis on achieving health equity through excellence in education, research, and service.
  • Our Values:  The Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health acts with respect and integrity to continuously advance health and well-being for all through knowledge, collaboration, empowerment, advocacy and sustainability. Our core values are: Fairness, Trust, Equity, Social Justice, Excellence, Innovation, Commitment, Collegiality, Diversity, Open Communication, Participation, Consensus, and Enhancement.

Resilience Statement (Optional)

If you have not addressed this elsewhere in your application, please describe any obstacles you have had to overcome or failures you have experienced; how you showed resilience; and what you learned from the experience. 250 words or less (1250 characters).


All international applicants are required to submit a TOEFL or IELTS score. A TOEFL iBT score of 90 or higher is required. Please see more information, including when the TOEFL/IELTS requirement is waived, for international applicants.

Other Factors

Other factors considered in the determination of a candidate's potential for success in the DrPH Program are:

  • Long range goals and commitment to public health
  • Successful leadership experience or potential
  • Work and volunteer experience related to the track area of choice
  • Demonstrated community service
  • Public health experience
  • Documented experience and/or commitment to underserved areas and populations

Further Information

For more information about the DrPH program, please visit the DrPH Page. If you have additional questions, please contact our Director of Admissions, at or (520) 626-3201.

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