Welcome from Chair

It is an exciting time to be an epidemiologist!

Now more than ever, highly trained public health professionals are relied upon to confront complex health concerns involving the study and control of factors leading to disease, and epidemiologists play critical roles in these efforts.

This field is continually evolving. Research, training, and prevention activities are initiated in response to disease outbreaks, bioterrorism threats, and natural disasters, as well as healthy aging and chronic disease treatment, reproductive health, and demands for injury control and safer environments, among many areas.

Here in the Department of Epidemiology, we equip our students with the tools to become tomorrow’s public health leaders through engaging curriculum, mentorship, practicum opportunities, and state-of-the-art research opportunities in a location recognized as an international hub for health care innovation and practice—the City of Pittsburgh.

We encourage you to join our growing community of public health investigators and invite you to explore how our graduate programs can help you launch a successful public health career. The Department of Epidemiology at Pitt Public Health has a central theme “Teaching and Prevention through Quality Research,” and is heavily involved in both research and prevention activities. These are incorporated into the classroom to provide a robust, practical, and clinically relevant educational experience.

Primary faculty members have a diverse range of research interests reflected in more than 90 funded projects and more than 500 publications each year. Research programs include those with global reach in over a dozen nations including Thailand, rural India, Mozambique, South Africa,Tobago, Rwanda, Brazil, Nigeria, China, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia, Taiwan, Columbia, and Japan.

We offer two master’s degree programs (MPH or MS) and two doctoral degree programs (PhD or DrPH). Three groups of students are particularly encouraged to apply:

  • Individuals with a variety of prior health-related professional degrees (e.g., physicians, veterinarians, dentists, nurses) who wish to learn more about epidemiological methods and research to enhance their current health professional activities or help them expand into a greater research or teaching role.
  • Those without formal training in the health professions who wish to pursue epidemiology as a first career and pursue a PhD.
  • Students straight from a BSc/BA who wish to enter a 45 credit MPH program.

Due to the diversity of our faculty research, our department offers many major areas of emphasis including...

Aging epidemiology
Applied public health epidemiology
Cancer epidemiology
Cardiovascular and diabetes epidemiology
Clinical trials and methods
Environmental epidemiology
Global health epidemiology
Infectious disease epidemiology
Injury prevention epidemiology
Molecular and genetic epidemiology
Obesity and nutritional epidemiology
Prevention, lifestyle and physical activity epidemiology
Psychiatric epidemiology
Reproductive, perinatal, and pediatric epidemiology
Women’s health epidemiology

Faculty in each of these areas have major research and/or community service programs that provide excellent facilities for student research and field training.

The Department of Epidemiology is also home to four major centers:

  • The Center for Aging and Population Health is a central focus for prevention of age-related disabilities, and includes a CDC funded prevention research center.
  • The Epidemiology Data Center coordinates a large number of multi-center clinical trials and registries, and is a focus of expertise in data management and analysis.
  • The Diabetes Prevention Support Center is focused on addressing the diabetes/obesity epidemic through evidence-based prevention intervention programs focusing on weight loss and increasing physical activity levels.
  • The Physical Activity Resource Center for Public Health was developed in order to provide up-to-date physical activity and physical function assessment and intervention information as well as guidance to interested researchers and community members.

The department also houses the Global Health Network and its innovative Supercourse. This unique resource provides over 1000 public health lectures from around the world via the internet, and is a leading example of international collaboration and education, including most recently, with the Library of Alexandria.

I encourage you to contact us with any questions while you are engaged in your application and admissions process. You’re choosing to join a department rich with history and demonstrated success.


Anne Newman, chair
Jane Cauley, executive vice chair

Anne B. Newman

Jane A Cauley

Administrative Contacts

Departmental assistant
Kerry Hanahan
Email: kmh231@pitt.edu
Primary Phone: 412-624-3056

Executive vice chair assistant
Sharon Happe
Email: happesl@pitt.edu
Primary Phone: 412-624-3057