Are You Ready to Become Part of the Next Generation of Public Health Professionals?

In a recent Forbes article for “The Secrets of Successful Women” series, I shared my public health career journey (and a story about an encounter with a wild elephant, but I digress). One of a few lessons I shared in the article was my love for learning, and the critical importance of continuous learning across one’s career. To me, it’s essential to take on opportunities to learn and grow as a professional, and I found it rewarding to prioritize taking on a new challenge over playing it safe. 

As I have progressed in my career, I have developed a passion for mentoring, including helping prepare upcoming generations of health and public health professionals as well as providing learning opportunities for them to enhance their success. One such opportunity I helped grow while working with former CDC Director Tom Frieden, MD, is the Public Health Associate Program (PHAP), a competitive, two-year, paid training program with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (You can read a moving perspective on the PHAP program from Dr. Frieden here).

This valuable training provides hands-on experience to students interested in a career in public health, allowing them to work alongside seasoned professionals in public health agencies and nongovernmental organizations. 

The 2020 application for PHAP candidates is now open for registration, and I encourage anyone who is considering a career in public health to apply for this program. PHAP may just be that out-of-the-box opportunity to learn and position the next generation of public health leaders who will step up and take charge of our nation’s health.



Judy Monroe, MD, is president and CEO of the CDC Foundation.