Completing the APE

Students begin working towards the 180-hour practice/internship requirement after completing the first two semesters of coursework, which is a minimum of 21-23 credits towards the MPH degree.

If you are a full-time student, and:

  • Began your program in the Fall semester, you are highly encouraged to complete all 180-internship hours in the summer between your first and second year. You may enroll in the APE or Thesis I course concurrently (if offered), or you must enroll in the Fall semester of your second year.
  • Began your program in the Spring semester, you are highly encouraged to start your 180 internship hours in the winter/January session between your first and second year. You must enroll in the APE or Thesis I course offered during the same semester.

If you are a part-time student, you may start the 180-hour requirement after you have completed a minimum of 21-23 credits of the program. Consult with your academic advisor to determine when you should take the APE or Thesis I course.

If you are a student in the 4+1 program, you must complete your hours in the summer before your final year.

If you are a Dual Degree student, consult with your academic advisor on course sequencing and completing internship hours.


Jump to:

Choose Your Seminar

APE and ILE Seminar

This seminar is for MPH students in CHSP, EPHS, GH, PHN, PHPM, and SDG concentrations.

Learn More

Thesis Seminar

This seminar is for MS students and MPH students in SBS, EPI and Bios concentrations.

Learn More


How do I find an Internship?

The process of finding the right internship takes time, so it is important to begin your search early. Start looking at least one semester in advance!

Some questions to ask yourself as you begin your search:

  • What are my goals for the experience? What skills do I want to gain?
  • Where would I like to work and with what type of organization?
  • Will I be exposed to a wide range of interesting activities?
  • What level of mentorship/guidance would I like from my preceptor?

We recommend that students identify at least two potential internship sites/projects in the event that your first choice falls through.

Use the many resources available to you:

In addition, we encourage you to network with your fellow classmates -- some already work within the public health field and can offer some insight!



How do I obtain approval for my Internship?

To obtain approval, students must secure an internship, and complete and submit a Practice Learning Contract (PLC) via the online portal

Review the submission deadlines in the next section.

Before any hours are counted toward the 180-hour requirement, a completed PLC must be signed by the internship preceptor and your GPH Faculty Advisor. Once signed, your document must be submitted, reviewed, and approved by the Office of Public Health Practice Office. PLC reviews typically take 4 to 5 business days, so please manage your time wisely! Upon approval of your PLC, you will receive the permission code required to register for the APE or Thesis I course.

Please find below an example of a completed learning contract and along with the competency guidelines for each concentration:



Deadlines for Submitting the Practice Learning Contract (PLC)

All students are strongly encouraged to complete internship hours in the Summer before their final year in the MPH or MS Program. Please review the chart below:

When will you complete 
your APE hours?

Priority Deadline

Final Deadline

Practice Course Sequence


January 15*

January 22

Accelerated APE Seminar in Spring, then Accelerated ILE Seminar in Summer


Accelerated APE/ILE Seminars in Fall^


June 15*

July 15

Accelerated APE/ILE Seminars in the Fall^

Thesis I+ Seminar in the Fall (BIOS, EPI, SBS only)


August 1*

August 15

Accelerated APE/ILE Seminars in the Spring^

*After this date, PLCs will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

+ Because the Thesis I Seminar is offered in the Fall semester only, Thesis students must complete their hours in the Summer. 

^ Can be taken only if hours and project deliverables are completed before the seminar start date.


Enrolling in Courses

An access code is required to enroll in the APE/ILE and Thesis I/Thesis II seminars. Students will not receive an access code for the courses until a learning contract has been submitted, reviewed, and approved by the Office of Public Health Practice.

If you have any questions, please contact