Career planning

People using technology.

There are numerous rewarding health-related careers and opportunities for current School of Public Health Sciences (SPHS) undergraduate students. On these pages, we will outline the various career options, further education paths, and additional resources available for SPHS undergraduate students for obtaining experience and guidance throughout university and the workplace. 

Firstly, take some time to consider the following:  

  • What are your short and long-term goals?
    • Are you completing a specific degree or certification that is related to your field of interest within public health or health sciences?
    • Consider the specific skills that are needed for your future career aspirations (eg. communication skills, data analytics, teamwork, leadership, program planning, etc).
    • What are ways for you to connect with mentors or peers, volunteer with different organizations, or gain relevant work experience to expand your network within your field?
  • What skills do you possess, and what are you passionate about?
    • What relevant experiences do you possess with respect to the field of public health and health sciences? (eg. research experience, customer service, leadership opportunities from volunteering, work experiences etc)
    • What courses do you particularly enjoy during your undergraduate studies that might inform your future career aspirations?
  • What kind of job do you hope to obtain?
    • Consider your career prospects and ensure it aligns with your education goals, interests, skillset, personal values, and work preferences.
    • For more information to explore values and skills related to future careers, see CareerHub.
  • Where do you want to be?
    • Explore career opportunities that involve international travel or working on global health projects.
    • Examine public health priorities in different regions.
    • Investigate partnerships and collaboration with public health organizations, academic institutions, and other stakeholders.
  • What are your workplace values?
  • Do you have any relevant experience?

Your knowledge of health careers and what they entail will expand throughout your undergraduate studies. Keep an open mind to ensure you don’t miss out on any new opportunities, experiences, or knowledge.

Potential careers

There are many different opportunities within the health field. See the Potential careers webpage for more information on careers in various disciplines such as: health promotion, health technology, epidemiology, statistical data analysis, policy analysis, medicine, and more.

One year after graduation, we survey our most recent alumni to inquire about their career paths and education pursuits. Check out the Graduation statistics webpage for examples of job positions, organizations, and post-graduate education received by our alumni to see their status and achievements:

Read about the career paths of recent and established alumni who graduated from SPHS undergraduate programs:

Further education

Students may choose to pursue additional education after their undergraduate degree. Some may do this directly after completing their undergraduate degree, while others may enter the workforce first and return to school later. It is important to recognize that everyone’s path looks different.

For more information on graduate programs, medical school, and further education advising, see Further education or book an appointment with a further education advisor.

Volunteering and community involvement

Engaging in student-run organizationsis a great way to get involved, learn, and network within a community. The University of Waterloo is always looking for students who want to get involved in the Faculty of Health and volunteer their time. Other opportunities for engagement also exist within external faculties and community organizations. For more information, see Volunteering and community involvement, or check out the Waterloo Undergraduate Student Association (WUSA) website for a complete club listing.

Other career-planning resources

Centre for Career Development

The Centre for Career Development (CCD) supports all students, alumni, and University employees in exploring opportunities and building a meaningful future. Career advisors can help you with career planning, career management, graduate and professional school preparation, work search methods, and setting meaningful career goals.

The Career Development Library collection contains print, video, and computer-based resources designed to support students during their time at the University of Waterloo. Resources are available in the areas of: 

  • Career planning - occupational descriptions and trends, job search materials, volunteer, and entrepreneurial information 
  • Education - Canadian university and college calendars, subject and geographic-specific directories, professional test applications 
  • Employer - videos, CDs, and directories 
  • Work/Study Abroad - programs and guides 
  • Skill Development – resume and cover letter writing, interview tips, and decision-making  

Note: Resources may be borrowed for seven days and renewed once. Renewal can be done through your library account.

Visit CareerHub for more information on further education, your degree and skills, decision-making, professional applications, interviewing, finding work, and obtaining success in the workplace. Once you have researched what courses or specializations would be helpful for specific careers, you can also book an appointment with your academic advisor to map out when you will fit these courses in with the requirements for your program.

Visit the Centre for Career Development to help with career planning

Ten Thousand Coffees Faculty of Health Hub

Join the Faculty of Health Hub on Ten Thousand Coffees to meet other people with similar career interests. Take the opportunity to network and make connections. 

  • Connect with the Faculty of Health community 
  • Discover opportunities to accelerate your career 
  • Build valuable connections with students and alumni

The Faculty of Health Hub is powered by Ten Thousand Coffees, which allows career-driven students to network and grow their career opportunities. This online community connects students directly with alumni to build long-lasting relationships and exchange industry knowledge and experiences.

Federal Student Work Experience Program

The Federal Student Work Experience Program (FSWEP) offers full-time students access to jobs from the federal government. This program allows students to find opportunities to learn about the federal government and gain experience while developing skills for working in the public sector.