“The USF College of Public Health (COPH) has always considered our top priority to be the development of our students for careers in the public health profession. The Certified in Public Health (CPH) exam was designed as a way to help professionalize the field of public health so it is no surprise that we were one of the first schools of public health in the nation to require our students to pass the CPH exam as a requirement for graduation,” said Dr. Donna Petersen, dean of the COPH.
In 2015, the National Board of Public Health Examiners (NBPHE) extended eligibility to take the CPH exam to faculty and staff at accredited schools of public health.
This past year marked the first time faculty and staff have had the option to take the exam. Twenty-six members of the COPH are now certified in public health.
Ms. Kate Brundage, certification program manager at NBPHE, confirmed that USF COPH has the most faculty and staff who have successfully earned the CPH credential out of all organizations that have reported their numbers.
The CPH is the only credential of its kind for public health. It measures professionals’ knowledge of all aspects of public health and their commitment to the field through continuing education.
It was developed to access a person’s knowledge of public health competencies regardless of academic concentration, according to the NBPHE.
The four hour exam consists of 200 multiple choice or single-best answer questions.
“Having faculty and staff take and pass the test is important to our students we are recruiting. If we, as a College, are pushing students to take and pass the test before graduation to demonstrate they are public health professionals, we need to be willing to demonstrate ourselves as examples,” said Dr. William Sappenfield, professor and chair of the department of community and family health (CFH).