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Public Health Training Certificate for American Indian Health Professionals


The overarching purpose of this public health certificate program is to promote participants’ capacity to address American Indian population health disparities through multidisciplinary public health approaches and culturally competent strategies. The certificate program examines four quadrants of influence: physical, behavioral, political, and spiritual/emotional, which, in balance, comprise the sphere of public health for American Indian communities.

The certificate program is offered for credit to graduate students at The Johns Hopkins University Schools of Medicine, Nursing, and Public Health. It is also open to other health care professionals interested in the health of American Indians. The certificate can be earned over a three-year period through condensed format courses taught in January, June, and July in Baltimore.

The Johns Hopkins Center for American Indian Health offers additional training opportunities that are not-for-credit.

Educational Objectives

Environmental, Cultural, and Political Context

Students completing the certificate program will be able to:

  1. Discuss how tribal sovereignty status impacts health policy and management
  2. Understand the potential interface of tribal, federal, and private sectors in health system development
  3. Discuss and provide examples of inter-relationships between the environment and the public’s health
  4. Describe the unique impact of mental, social, and emotional health status on tribal community well-being
  5. Describe the components of effective community education and health communication campaigns
  6. Understand factors affecting early child development unique to tribal communities

Public Health Research Skills

Those completing the certificate will be able to employ public health theory and logic frameworks and apply basic statistical, demographic, and epidemiologic techniques to:

  1. Critique published public health research
  2. Identify available disease, behavioral, and mental health surveillance data from American Indian communities
  3. Identify how community based participatory research can be used to promote American Indian health
  4. Understand how to identify health priority needs utilizing community based participatory research methods and to evaluate intervention impacts using health surveillance data from American Indian communities
  5. Work with epidemiologists and other researchers to design community based interventions and other data collection efforts appropriate for American Indian communities
  6. Recognize good data management practices
  7. Understand the importance of research ethics and the composition and function of Institutional Review Boards (IRBs), with specific emphasis on IRB’s role in tribal environments

Course of Study

Students should carefully review the certificate program page on the JHU e-catalogue site for full information about course offerings and program requirements.


The certificate program is designed for all Johns Hopkins University students, with the exception of JHSPH MAS students, who are not eligible to apply until they have completed their degree program. It is also offered to non-degree students with at least a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university and a strong record of successful academic achievement.

The Johns Hopkins Center for American Indian Health also offers not-for-credit training opportunities to American Indian health professionals, paraprofessionals, people working within American Indian communities, and current degree candidates at the School who are interested in expanding their public health expertise and skill sets related to American Indian health. An Award of Proficiency in American Indian Public Health may be taken not for credit; click here for more information on this Award.

Admissions Process

Applying to the certificate program as a JHU graduate student

Students already enrolled in a graduate program at JHU are not required to submit the School's electronic admissions application, but  must email Certificate Program Contact prior to starting coursework.

Start terms: It is possible to begin the certificate program only in these terms: Summer Institute and Winter Institute.

Applying to the certificate program as a non-degree student

Students who are not currently enrolled in a graduate program at JHU are required to apply to certificate programs using SOPHAS Express. All non-degree applicants should review the general Certificates Admissions page for instructions on how to apply to a certificate program and application deadlines. 

Start terms: It is possible to begin the certificate program only in these terms: Summer Institute, Winter Institute

TOEFL/IELTS: Not required.

Prerequisites or special requirements: None

Requirements for Successful Completion

The student should review the section of the website that addresses completion before completing certificate program requirements. The student's transcript will not indicate that the certificate was earned until the Notification of Completion has submitted, verified by the certificate program, and processed by the Registrar.

Contact Information

Sponsoring Department
International Health

Program Contact
Olivia Trujillo

Faculty Sponsor
Allison Barlow

Faculty Co-Sponsor
 Kristen Speakman