How to Write a Public Health Resume: With Template & Example
By Indeed Editorial Team
Published 23 May 2022
The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.
If you're a health care professional looking for a job, it's important to have an impressive resume that shows hiring managers your role-relevant experiences and qualifications. Employers often get hundreds and even thousands of applications when filling positions, and one of the best ways to make your candidacy outstanding is to write a convincing resume that can captivate recruiters. Understanding how to format your resume and the specific information to include in the document can help you deliver a good first impression.
In this article, we define what a public health resume is, explain how to write it and provide a template and an example as a guide.
What is a public health resume?
A public health resume is a document that shows hiring managers the credentials that qualify you for a role in public health. Whether you're applying for an administrative role or want to work as a doctor in a healthcare establishment, employers look for certain professional and personal qualities in candidates. Creating a resume that highlights your role-relevant experience, skills, qualifications and training can help hiring managers match your capabilities with their role. This makes it vital to know how to write a convincing resume that can help you grab the recruiters' attention and motivate them to consider your application.
How to write a resume for a public health position
Follow these steps to learn how to write a resume for a public health role:
1. Review the job description
You can't write a job-relevant resume without first reviewing the job post. Employers include most of the information candidates require to determine whether they fit a role in the job description. Check the job ad for the specific academic qualifications, professional training, licensure, skills and experience required to complete the responsibilities of the role. Some employers also include information about the type of personality they want.
For example, if you're applying for a social worker role in a paediatric hospital, the employer might require candidates who have a natural affinity for children, compassion and patience. An epidemiology position might require somebody with a doctorate in microbiology, exceptional research abilities and experience using laboratory equipment. Some public health jobs require a specific number of years working under supervision and several other criteria. Before you start writing a resume, ensure your qualifications match the requirements for the role so that you can tailor the document to the employer's expectations.
2. Include your contact information
Start your resume by listing your name and contact details. Write your full name in bold or large fonts to make it prominent on the document. Include a functional phone number and email address employers can reach you on for more information about your application or an interview. You can also include links to your professional website and social media handles so that hiring managers have multiple channels to reach you.
When listing email addresses, ensure to use a professionally acceptable one, which includes your full names. Avoid using emails with numbers and nicknames because they don't portray you as an expert. You can buy professional email addresses at affordable prices from the popular email service providers. If you have a website, you can also use an email from the platform for official correspondences.
3. Write a professional summary
A professional summary encapsulates your most important skills, credentials, experiences and achievements that qualify you for a role. It's the first detailed section of your resume and allows the hiring manager to evaluate your qualifications against the role. This makes it a vital component of any resume for catching the reader's attention and motivating them to read the rest of the document.
Besides including your role-relevant qualifications, you can also mention the job title you're applying for and the name of the employer. You can also briefly outline your ambition for the role if hired. A professional summary comprises two to three short and direct sentences.
4. Outline your work history
Your resume requires a section to highlight your work experience. Include only relevant positions which can demonstrate your ability to perform in the employer's role effectively. Each entry in this section includes the job title, name of the employer, dates of employment and responsibilities and achievements. Use three to five bullet points to highlight your responsibilities and accomplishments in previous roles. Start each sentence with an action verb and write in the active voice. Include keywords from the job ad in the descriptions, such as skills and personal qualities.
Quantify your results and performance with figures to make them more believable. For example, you can say that you trained 10 nursing assistants on how to collect samples and restrain patients during complex procedures. You can also highlight the number of patients you oversaw at peak hours and how your knowledge of substance abuse and domestic violence helped save patients' lives.
5. List your education
In this section, list your educational qualifications in public health. Start from the highest and most recent, such as a doctorate in epidemiology, to the least relevant. List the name of the qualification, the field of study, the awarding institution and dates of attendance or graduation. If you want to list any professional training, include the name of the training, the granting organisation and the dates of enrolment. Place the education section above experience if you lack work history.
If you're a recent graduate, you can include relevant coursework, awards and GPA (3.5 or higher) to increase the content of the education section and align it to the employer's requirements.
6. Highlight relevant skills
Create a skills section to highlight your role-relevant soft and hard skills. If you studied the job description, you're likely going to know the specific skills the employer is looking for in the ideal candidate. Include those skills and other relevant competencies in your resume to show the employer you have the professional proficiency to complete tasks and deliver results if hired.
Some skills employers desire in public health professionals include communication, problem-solving, teamwork, collaboration, empathy, computer skills and administration. There may also be role-specific skills, such as the ability to draw samples from patients, knowledge of diagnosis equipment and expertise in using proprietary health information management software.
7. Other sections to include
Some public health roles require certifications and licensure. If you have the required credentials, you can include them under the education section or create a separate section for them on your resume. You can also create a section for awards, accomplishments, membership of professional associations, publications and other recognitions that can enhance your chances. If you're a recent graduate with zero or minimal experience, you can add a section to highlight voluntary experience, extracurricular activities and interests and hobbies, which can show you have skills and a history that increases the likelihood of succeeding in the role.
8. Proofread and edit your resume
Before sending your resume to the employer, take time to proofread and edit the document to make it professional and error free. Look for spelling and grammatical errors and edit sentences for conciseness and clarity. Ensure dates, names, locations and figures are correct and use the right font style and sizes to keep the document tidy and readable. It's advisable to seek a second opinion about the resume from an experienced person who can review the document and recommend ways to improve it.
Template for writing a resume for a public health professional
Here's a template you can use as a guide when writing a resume for a public health role:
[First name] [Last name]
[Brief paragraph detailing your skills and accomplishments in the public health field.
[Name of degree]
[University or college name]
[Dates of attendance]
[Dates of employment]
Example of resume for a public health role
Here's an example of a resume for a public health officer:
Dedicated public affairs specialist with excellent communication, organisation, programme management and speech writing skills. Proven experience with diverse community outreach and various marketing strategies.
Master of science in community social work
Hong Kong University of Health Sciences
Bachelor of Arts in public health
Hong Kong Polytechnic
Public health specialist
Sum Kin Health Research
July 2016–May 2021
lead interdisciplinary team meetings
managed media outreach
created curriculum for community groups and internal staff
developed media campaigns and outreach for public health initiatives in the assigned region
oversaw public health projects
assisted the prevention centre director in the management of public health project activities
Public health specialist
Superior General Health
June 2014–July 2016
maintained the project database
analysed medical records to identify mothers and infants
prepared medical records
coordinated with hospitals and agencies to collect study information
public health sciences skills
programme development and management
community and media outreach
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