Department of Population and Public Health Sciences

Public Health Leadership Certificate Program

The Public Health Leadership (PHL) Certificate Program will provide students with both skills and a working knowledge of administrative principles necessary in applied public health and related professional settings. 

Those who complete the program will have achieved advanced competencies in strategy, leadership and organizational effectiveness. In addition, certificate students will have the ability to focus their study in budgeting, ethics, communications, grant writing, management and/or marketing.

The PHL Certificate Program is designed for health system and health plan administrators, health department employees, physicians, nurses and other health care professionals who could benefit from master's-level business courses.

Considering a Master’s Degree in Business, Public Health or Public Administration?

PHL Certificate Program graduates who wish to enhance their educational investment further are encouraged to apply to the following WSU master's degree programs:

Many course credits from the PHL Certificate Program are transferable to these WSU master's programs.

Program of Study

To earn the Certificate in Public Health Leadership (PHL), students must successfully complete four semester courses (12 credit hours): Required (6 credit hours): PPH 7510 Strategic Leadership in Health Care (3 credit hours) AND one of the following three courses:  PPH 6200, PPH 6300, or PPH 6400 (3 credit hours)

Electives (6 Credit Hours): Two courses from different subject areas:

Finance & Budgeting
Grant Writing

Application Process

To be admitted to the program, students must first be accepted into the WSU Graduate School and have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher. Minimum graduate school requirements include an earned bachelor’s and/or advanced graduate degree from an accredited college or university. 

If you are not currently enrolled at WSU, you must apply as a non-degree student through the WSU Graduate School online application. During the online application process, you will have an opportunity to select the PHL Certificate Program and to submit required documents.

If you are a current graduate student enrolled at WSU, please complete the online Certificate in Public Health Leadership application only. You will not need to apply through the WSU Graduate School.

All applicants should submit the online Certificate in Public Health Leadership application along with a one- to two-page personal statement describing your professional background and personal interest in the program.

For More Information

Review Certificate Student Handbook 

For questions regarding admissions or administration, please contact Ron Combs, Certificate Program Coordinator, by phone at (937) 775-1300 or by email at

For additional programmatic questions, please contact John McAlearney, Ph.D., director of the PHL Certificate Program, by phone at (937) 775-1430, or by email at

Last edited on 07/13/2021.