Job opportunities for health promotion specialists are on the rise. These individuals work to improve the health of people, specifically those in areas with disproportionate rates of preventable diseases and adverse health conditions. Anyone with a degree in health promotion can help by incorporating medical and behavioral science into a plan for patients.
So what kind of jobs can you get with a health promotion major? We asked Nebraska Methodist College's Wellness & Health Promotion Management program director Jeannie Hannan to learn more about where health promotion specialists work, job duties, education, growth and more.
Prospective students often ask what type of job they can get with a master’s degree in Wellness & Health Promotion.
To answer this question, we first need to understand health promotion. The World Health Organization (WHO) defines health promotion as “the process of enabling people to increase control over, and to improve their health.”
Health promotion, now more than ever, is vital to the health and wellbeing of our country. According to the Centers for Disease Control, chronic conditions are the leading cause of death and disability in the United States and contribute to over three trillion dollars in healthcare costs. It is estimated that up to 80% of chronic conditions can be prevented, treated and/or reversed by lifestyle management.
Having the knowledge and skills to educate, motivate and empower individuals to make healthy lifestyle changes is powerful. Individuals with these skills have the opportunity to make a huge difference in the health and wellbeing of worksites, communities, clinical settings and medical fitness centers.
With a health promotion master’s degree, you'll be able to focus on assessing, creating, managing and evaluating wellness and lifestyle initiatives along with coaching individuals through behavior change. Graduates with this background are positioned to lead programs within worksites, communities, clinical settings or medical fitness centers. They are also positioned to become a wellness & health promotion consultant.
Graduates of Nebraska Methodist College's Master of Science in Wellness & Health Promotion program were recently surveyed to determine their job titles, main roles of their positions and annual salary ranges.
- Wellness Manager, Wellness Consultant
- Health Coach, Health Educator
- Fitness/Wellness Specialist
- Academic Educator
- Patient Education & Health Promotion Manager
- Clinical Programs Director
- Public Health Executive Director
- Director of Occupational Health & Employee Health
- Vice President of Health & Wellness, Vice President of Business Development
- Workplace Experience Coordinator
- Human Resource Manager
Education and Presentation
- Oncology education for outreach, healthcare staff and the community.
- Diabetes prevention education.
- Prenatal education.
- Education of chronic disease management.
- Coordinating, collaborating and presenting health-related substance use prevention.
Strategy and Development
- Global wellbeing initiatives for the organization. International and domestic benefit administration and management.
- Developing and managing wellness benefits program; developing and managing targeted fitness and wellness programs; managing wellness site coordinator staff; managing wellness facilities staff; recruiting and hiring staff and interns; public speaking/presenting; and facility design.
- Program design, execution and evaluation. Employee engagement and outreach, wellness events and educational wellness speaker series.
- Maintain benefits and wellness benefits for employees.
- Marketing of wellness platforms to commercial entities.
Coaching and Advising
- Coaching people with diagnosed conditions, weight management, tobacco cessation and healthy lifestyles.
- Advise insurance company’s clients on wellness programming and best practices.
- Working with Wellness Coordinators and Wellness Program Managers and help them to provide wellness programs, materials and online resources for their employees and members.
- Orienting participants to exercise programs, teaching various exercise classes, and fostering a culture of whole-person wellness through program offerings.
- Working with addicts to assist them in finding and maintaining sobriety.
Supervision and Management
- Supervising patient educators who focus on Worksite Wellness, Patient Education Workshops, Health Coaching, Program Development, Social Marketing, and more.
- Managing a statewide initiative to improve workplace wellness which includes planning and delivering training opportunities, managing partnerships, developing and enhancing content for online assessment and organizational change tools, and managing internal employee wellbeing program.
- Serving as the public health expert for Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC).
- Leadership responsibility for community campaign to embrace healthy lifestyles.
- Ensuring that programs and services of organization align with the health and wellness program goals of client. Strategizing how organization can expand based on client goals and identify gaps.
Annual Salary Range
Note about the graph: a few respondents were currently in-between jobs.
If you have a passion for the health of wellbeing of others, I encourage you to consider continuing your education with a Master of Science in Wellness & Health Promotion from Nebraska Methodist College (NMC). NMC is the leader in the field of Health Promotion and graduated its first group of students in 1999. The program was recently ranked in the top 20 master’s degrees in health education by Intelligent.com.
Jeannie Hannan, PhD, MSHP, ACSM-HFD, CHWC is the Program Director for Wellness & Health Promotion Management at Nebraska Methodist College. Jeannie is a graduate of the class of 2000 from the NMC Master of Science in Health Promotion program.