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Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Environmental Health

Track in Health Security

Offered By: Department of Environmental Health and Engineering

In-person | Full-Time | 4 years

About This Track

In a world of rapid innovation in the biological sciences, the emergence of new diseases, and changing environmental pressures, health security risks to the global community are a rising concern. This program will train future researchers studying major biological and health security risks who could contribute unique voices to the academic community and ultimately inform global policies that will shape future preparation and responses to health security and global catastrophic biological risks.  Graduate students in this program will learn skills that relate to prevention, preparedness, and response to potential health security threats. Topic areas are wide ranging, with a common thread of reducing health security threats or their impacts and increasing resiliency of communities to global catastrophic biological risks.


  1. Identify major health security threats; characterize the human, social, economic and political risks they pose to societies; and demonstrate the importance of public health to national security

  2. Apply risk assessment principles to program planning, implementation and goals, particularly in the context of emergency response and health security problems

  3. Examine the origin and evolution of major US and international organizations and initiatives to prevent, detect, and respond to health security threats; and assess those areas of health security where preparedness is strongest and where additional progress is needed

  4. Evaluate the effectiveness of strategies to enhance health security and prevent or mitigate health security threats

  5. Synthesize and communicate important health security information in a way that enables political leaders and policymakers to take appropriate action

Track Faculty

Gigi Gronvall, PhD; Global catastrophic biological risks, biotechnology and health  security

Tara Kirk Sell, PhD; Global catastrophic biological risks, emerging infectious diseases, risk communication and decision making

Monica Schoch-Spana, PhD; Health security, public health preparedness, public engagement

Crystal Watson, DrPH; Global catastrophic biological risks, risk assessment, crisis decision making


Browse an overview of this program's requirements in the JHU Academic Catalogue - See Track Requirements for Health Security and explore all course offerings in the Bloomberg School Course Directory.

Tuition and Funding

All full-time PhD students will receive the following support for the first four years of the program: full tuition, stipend, individual health insurance, University Health Services clinic fee, vision insurance, and dental insurance.

Need-Based Relocation Grants
Students who are admitted to PhD programs at JHU starting in Fall 2023 or beyond can apply to receive a $1500 need-based grant to offset the costs of relocating to be able to attend JHU. These grants provide funding to a portion of incoming students who, without this money, may otherwise not be able to afford to relocate to JHU for their PhD program. This is not a merit-based grant. Applications will be evaluated solely based on financial need. View more information about the need-based relocation grants for PhD students.

Contact Us

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