DrPH Competencies


Upon completion of the Doctor of Public Health (DrPH) program at the University of Hawai‘i, the graduate should master the following competencies:

Planning and Evaluation

  1. Integrate evidence and community experience to describe, anticipate, and mediate public health needs and problems.
  2. Identify and apply appropriate theory to inform the design and evaluation of public health interventions.
  3. Integrate theory, empirical knowledge, and community needs with financial planning and infrastructure design in the context of acquiring external funds.

Advocacy and Policy Development

  1. Serve as a liaison and advocate to the policy community for the diverse pressing public health issues.
  2. Interact productively with stakeholders and decision-makers to have an impact on public policy.
  3. Identify, develop, and apply policies, laws and regulations for public health improvement.
  4. Translate policy into organizational plans, structures and programs.


  1. Demonstrate and apply high ethical standards to all activities, including the communication and interaction with diverse populations, the general conduct of research, and the handling of information and data.

Culturally Sensitive Community Collaboration

  1. Facilitate and expand collaborative relationships among a variety of entities (e.g., governmental, non-governmental, public, private, and academic).
  2. Apply appropriate skills to integrate community entities into the planning, implementation, evaluation and interpretation of PH projects.
  3. Utilize the integrating concepts and skills involved in culturally appropriate community engagement and empowerment with diverse communities.


  1. Promote co-learning between researchers, public health professionals and communities.
  2. Critique research appropriateness, including the ethical aspects of research designs, subject recruitment and data collection.
  3. Select appropriate research designs and methods to address questions of PH importance.
  4. Review and synthesize a body of research literature.
  5. Select and apply appropriate approaches for evaluation and quality improvement to assess program implementation.


  1. Teach, advise, and mentor to enhance the capacity of students, peers, and community members.
  2. Identify, develop and implement engaged teaching methods that are appropriate for the respective audiences and conditions.


  1. Develop strategies to promote collaborative problem solving, decision making and evaluation.
  2. Engage stakeholders and manage teams, groups, and organizations to work toward a defined goal.


  1. Demonstrate effective written and oral skills for communicating with persons from diverse cultural, socioeconomic, educational, racial, ethnic and professional backgrounds and persons of all ages and lifestyle preferences.


  1. Collaborate with communication and informatics specialists in the process of design, implementation and evaluation of PH programs.
  2. Use information technology to access, interpret and evaluate PH data and reduce health disparities.

Critical Analysis and Systems Thinking

  1. Critically analyze, use and synthesize information from multiple sources to address public health problems/issues.
  2. Analyze and evaluate the impact of inter-relationships among systems that influence the quality of life of diverse populations in their communities.
  3. Analyze the impact of local, national, and global trends and interdependencies on PH related problems and systems.