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The Environmental and Occupational Health (EOH) Department has a sound reputation as a leader in training students to...

  • Identify agents that affect health
  • Study the long-term effects of environmental and occupational health risks
  • Determine the molecular mechanisms of toxic agents that contribute to the development of certain illnesses and diseases.

Environmental health specialists help find ways to promote healthier environments and minimize risks that increase the incidence of respiratory, cardiovascular, and musculoskeletal diseases, asthma, lower respiratory infections, road traffic injuries, poisonings, and drownings.
Occupational health specialists study all aspects of health and safety in the workplace. From exposure to toxins on the job, to workplace violence and lifting injuries, occupational hazards create an enormous health burden, unnecessary pain and suffering, and economic loss in the workplace.

Find a research program for your interests

Many EOH faculty members collaborate with basic sciences and clinical investigators throughout other departments at Pitt Public Health, and the University of Pittsburgh schools of medicine and engineering. Students and faculty perform studies on the principles and practice of environmental health ranging from basic research at the cellular and molecular level to applied translational studies of human disease, population exposure, and public health studies.

In addition, faculty and students work with local governmental organizations, such as the Allegheny County Health Department, the Pittsburgh Office of the U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, and the Allegheny County Sanitary Authority to study and improve the environmental health of southwestern Pennsylvania.

Pursue a career in environmental and occupational health

Doctoral degree graduates are prepared to work in laboratory-based academic settings as faculty or postdoctoral fellows and become prominent members of government agencies and independent industries. Recent graduates have obtained fellowships at top-tier academic institutions, positions with
the National Institutes of Health, the Environmental Protection Agency, and in firms conducting chemical and environmental risk assessment.

Master's degree graduates play prominent roles as environmental/occupational health practitioners in various settings, including industry, hospitals, government agencies, and private practice.

Degrees

The EOH Department offers two degrees in the environmental health sciences, providing a broad theoretical and practical education for positions in academia, industry, or government. The multiple tracks provide flexibility in acquiring advance training in toxicology, environmental biophysics, molecular and cellular pathobiology, risk assessment, and exposure science.

Our professional degree programs allow students to earn concentrations in environmental health or risk assessment and apply these concepts to public health practice.

 

Wenzel, Kagan, Newman are Highly Cited Researchers for 2021

Congratulations to EOH’s Sall...
Wenzel, Kagan, Newman are Highly Cited Researchers for 2021

Congratulations to EOH’s Sally Wenzel and Valerian Kagan and EPI’s Anne Newman for their inclusion in the 2021 list of Highly Cited Researchers. The list identifies researchers who have demonstrated significant influence in their chosen fields through the publication of multiple highly cited papers... (01/04/2022)

Misled on lead: The campaign to keep toxic lead in hunting ammo and fishing tackle

ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH NEWS - E...
Misled on lead: The campaign to keep toxic lead in hunting ammo and fishing tackle

ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH NEWS - EOH student Sam Totoni authored a two-part feature series to inform the public. “Hunting and fishing have a science denial problem. Special interest groups are misleading hunters and anglers—some of the country's proudest conservationists—into poisoning wildlife. Hunters... (12/15/2021)

Wenzel talks about endotypes and precision medicine in podcast

PHYSIOL REV - EOH Chair Sally...
Wenzel talks about endotypes and precision medicine in podcast

PHYSIOL REV - EOH Chair Sally Wenzel is a world authority on the diagnosis and treatment of asthma, a chronic disease with significant implications to public health. She talks about her paper “Are we meeting the promise of endotypes and precision medicine in asthma?” on a recent episode of the Phys... (12/07/2021)

Lichtveld touts equity in climate change science at NAM annual meeting

“The absolute bottom line for...
Lichtveld touts equity in climate change science at NAM annual meeting

“The absolute bottom line for us in the area of science is that we are responsible for making climate and health science work for those most vulnerable. Across all presentations, every single presenter talked about issues of equity and issues of vulnerability,” Lichtveld said. “A climate focus must... (11/22/2021)

Lichtveld on how Huntington Beach Oil Spill Might Affect Human Health

VERYWELL HEALTH - Breathing c...
Lichtveld on how Huntington Beach Oil Spill Might Affect Human Health

VERYWELL HEALTH - Breathing crude oil vapors can cause coughing, throat and nose irritation, dizziness, headache, and nausea, according to a 2016 medical study of the DWH clean-up workers. This is particularly worrisome for vulnerable populations like children, older adults and people with lung con... (10/11/2021)