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Public Health Practice Team

Building the future public health workforce in Oregon through community partnership.

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What Is The Public Health Practice Team?

The Public Health Practice Team (PHPT) operates within the OHSU-PSU School of Public Health. We hire graduate student workers as OHSU Student Workers and then place them in paid positions with community partners, such as the Oregon Health Authority. Under co-supervision by us and other Public Health leaders, they assist with meaningful, concrete public health practice work.

We help fill immediate workforce needs and create a more robust public health practice pipeline by investing in the future of the public health workforce.

50+ Students

Student-workers hired and placed at OHA to date

Ranked Top 5

Commonwealth Fund’s state health Ranked Oregon among all states for COVID-19 response

6 Partner Teams

Our student and faculty teams supported 6 overall teams with external Community Partners since 2020

Benefits of Public Health Practice

The PHPT aspires to become a nationally recognized model of excellence for building bridges between the university and community public health partners and placing public health graduate students in practice jobs.

This model increases awareness of public health practice among students and creates opportunities for professional development and networking for our student workers. It provides our community partners with engaged, dedicated student workers to meet workforce surge capacity on public health practice projects.

SPH/OHA Collaborate Projects To Date

COVID-19 Case Management

Engaged in various COVID-19 surge work including recovery calls, contact tracing, and case investigation.

Program Design & Evaluation Services

Supporting the Aid and Assist program through secondary research to better understand how other states are assisting persons whose mental health complicates their fitness to stand trial.


Conducted medical chart abstraction for patients who were hospitalized with COVID-19, helping determine progression of severe COVID-19.

Vaccine Navigation

Assisted with needs assessment, design, and implementation of a new program to support vaccine access for Oregonians with barriers to access.

Health Security, Preparedness, and Response

Supported analysis, evaluation, and planning Oregon’s systems for confronting major emergencies.

Emergency Medical Services &
Trauma Systems Program

Assisted with summarizing existing trauma and performance measures and writing code to operationalize metrics.

Can The PHPT Be Combined With The Practice Experience?

No, this employment opportunity cannot be combined with the Practice Experience (PE). However, these positions often enable student workers to network with a variety of OHA projects, and this can potentially result in finding a PE placement that is aligned with the student’s interests.

Committed To Health Equity

Read our more detailed booklet about the PHPT team, which includes information about our commitment to infusing health equity into everything we do.

Learn More

Interested In The Public Health Practice Team?

If you want to learn more about how you can work with the PHPT as a community partner or student worker, please fill out this form.

“Working for HSPR has given me the opportunity to gain firsthand experience preparing for and responding to public health emergencies while pursuing my MPH. I have been able to apply my classroom knowledge in a meaningful way to help reduce the burden of COVID-19, Mpox, wildfires, and other events on our community. I have made great connections at OHA and know that this experience will help jumpstart my public health career.”

Abby Malloy, Health Promotion MPH student and Public Health Preparedness Planner on OHA’s HSPR Team
Abby Malloy

“One of the greatest benefits to the students is their ability to jump into shorter term projects. At the state level many folks have very full plates and when a new project comes in, it often takes quite some time to shift capacity to the work. SPH students are perfect to support this work and get to utilize the knowledge they’re getting in their courses while gaining practical working experience. Students are flexible, innovative, and they’ll be the next wave of public health professionals.”

Amelia Reynolds, Wildfire Coordinator for the Oregon Health Authority
Amelia Reynolds, Wildfire Coordinator for the Oregon Health Authority

“My experience at OHA gives me an advantage and helps me stand out compared to other epidemiologists. It shows that I was proactive and engaged during the pandemic and have the skill set and tools to assist with similar tasks down the road.”

Shabir Sarwary, Epidemiology PhD student. One of the original members of the COVID-19 Team. Also worked as an Emergency Medicine & Trauma Epidemiology Specialist
Shabir Sarwary