Executive Experience

Rollins' EMPH program is a unique graduate program designed to meet the needs of working professionals.

Executive MPH students, Rollins School of Public Health


The hybrid format allows working professionals to gain the best of both worlds: face-to-face instruction and collaboration with faculty and peers during the on-campus sessions at the beginning and end of each semester AND the flexibility of online learning during the interim 12 weeks of the semester.

The EMPH program follows the Adult Learning Theory as a model in developing its distance learning program. 

Adult Learning Theory states that adult learners:

  1. Need to know why they need to learn specific material
  2. Are self-directed
  3. Possess experience that can be applied to their education
  4. Are ready to learn
  5. Are problem centered in their orientation to learning
  6. Are highly motivated to learn (Knowles, 1984)

In addition, adult learners insist that certain principles be followed throughout their learning experience. These principles are:

  1. The learner has full responsibility of his or her learning.
  2. The subject matter has relevance and meaning for the learner.
  3. Involvement and participation are necessary for learning.
  4. The relationship between learners shows helping styles and learner self-responsibility.
  5. The teacher is a facilitator and resource person.
  6. The learner sees him or herself differently as a result of the learning experience (Burge and Howard, 1988).
Thinking back, this has truly been the best education decision that I made for myself. Ever since the first semester, I just felt epidemiology was my calling.
Diane Dong

Diane Dong

MPH in Applied Epidemiology

Learn from Instructors and Peers

While students in most programs, including EMPH, expect to learn from their instructors, one of the great strengths of the EMPH program at Rollins is the opportunity for students to also learn from the extensive experience of their peers. Although a minimum of three years of experience is required for EMPH admission, EMPH students have an average of eight-to-nine years of work experience and bring a very rich background to the classroom experience.

One of the reasons I love working with EMPH students is that I learn so much myself in every course that I teach. Our students bring such a wealth of experience, that I know I will learn a lot too.
Laurie Gaydos, Associate Chair for Academic Affairs, EMPH

Laurie Gaydos, Associate Chair for Academic Affairs, EMPH

A Truly Interactive Experience

Rollins' EMPH program prides itself on being a truly interactive program. The required on-campus sessions are critical to building a community of learners for the EMPH program. These three-day sessions at the beginning and end of each semester allow students to learn in a face-to-face environment and to build a cohort and collaborative feel for the program.

However, collaboration is not only for the on-campus sessions. Using the Blackboard learning management system, instructors work closely with our top-notch instructional design team to ensure that the online portion of each course in the interim 12 weeks is also highly interactive. Instructional methods include a mix of readings, videos, annotated presentations, online lab sessions, and live (virtual) office hours to ensure that students get the most out of the instructional portions of each course. Students are also expected to participate in weekly discussion board postings in which they synthesize the readings and course information for the week.

Access to Leaders in the Field

EMPH faculty members are a mix of traditional academics and experts practicing in the field. This means fantastic networking opportunities for our EMPH students within their field of choice. Some of the types of professionals who teach in the EMPH program include:

  • Academic researchers
  • Clinicians (e.g. physicians, nurses)
  • Consultants
  • Epidemiologists 
  • Heath educators
  • Health department directors
  • Informaticians
  • Public health researchers
  • And MANY, MANY more!

Practicum and culminating experiences also offer EMPH students the opportunity to work closely with practitioners and faculty and their large network of experts in the field.