Dear DHPE Members, Partners and Supporters,


It is will great sadness to announce that the Directors of Health Promotion and Education (DHPE) have finally closed our doors after being in operation for 72 years. The Association of State and Territorial Directors of Health Promotion and Public Health Education (ASTDHPPHE) dba the Directors of Health Promotion and Education (DHPE) is dissolving. As with many non-profits in recent years, DHPE has been challenged to do more with less.  

On behalf of the Board of Directors of DHPE, I want to thank all of you who have contributed to the success of DHPE over its 72-year history.  We have accomplished so much toward our shared mission of strengthening public health capacity in policy and in systems change to improve the health of all and achieve health equity. 

Although DHPE is dissolving, the programs that we collectively have worked hard to establish and maintain will be continuing under new leadership. The assets of these programs have been given to the excellent caretakers, which are highlighted below.

Again, thank you for all your hard work and support of all our programs, and we hope you will utilize some of these resources as your agency pursues future policy, systems and environmental change approaches to improve the health of our communities and the Nation!

The Society for Public Health Education (SOPHE), a nonprofit organization with our shared goals and vision, will maintain the balance of DHPE programs, that are NOT designated below, on their website. We want all of our former members and partners to reach out to SOPHE as an organizational home and/or resource for future professional development. They will be offering special membership pricing for former members of DHPE. SOPHE can be reached at: https://www.sophe.org/

Should you have a need to contact DHPE, we will have email access for a few more months at: info@dhpe.org or dsammons-hackett@dhpe.org


DHPE Programs and New Homes:

Systems Change for Health

Starting January 1, 2018, Carolyn Crump, PhD and James Emery, MPH - the curriculum developers for Systems Change for Health (SCH) - will be administrating and operating the program. You may view the courses at the new website: 


You can learn more about the authors at: http://UNCHealthySolutions.web.unc.edu . Thank you for your continued support of and/or interest in the Systems Change for Health (SCH) training program!

Minority Internship and Fellowship Program

The Association of State Public Health Nutritionists (ASPHN) is operating the Health Equity Internship Program starting in January 2017. Please send your emails and inquiries to ASPHN Executive Director Karen Probert at internship@asphn.orgThank you for your interest in the Health Equity Internship Program!

Lupus Health Education Program

The purpose of the DHPE Lupus Health Education Program entitled LEAP is to reduce lupus related health disparities among racial and ethnic minority populations disproportionately affected by this disease by conducting a national lupus education initiative. The caretaker agreement is still under development.

National Implementation and Dissemination for Chronic Disease Prevention Initiative

The CDC-funded National Implementation and Dissemination for Chronic Disease Prevention Initiative, also referred to as Partnering4Health has come to an end. DHPE would like to thank each of you for your participation and support of the project over the past three years. Several resources have been created as a part of Partnering4Health and these resources are available to you and your affiliates to be utilized in the future. Learn more below:

  • The Partnering4Health white paper has been released.  The white paper includes both a summary documentas well as pull-outs for each focus area of physical activity, nutrition, smoke-free environments and community clinical linkages. 
  • The Partnering4Health microsite hosts the white paper as well as additional resources from the national project. The site is hosted by the Society of Public Health Education (SOPHE) at http://partnering4health.org
  • DHPE created an online sustainability course, featuring several community partners.  The course also has an accompanying toolkit created by SOPHE.
  • A  final video integrates interviews with national partners, including American Health Association, American Planning Association, and the National WIC Association, from the Denver meeting. 
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Internship Program

Benefits & Responsibilities




The Directors of Health Promotion and Education (formerly known as the Association of State and Territorial Directors of Health Promotion and Public Health Education, ASTDHPPHE), a not-for-profit national organization, was founded in 1946 (as the Conference of State Directors of Public Health Education) as a joint effort between directors of health education in state health departments, deans of health education in schools of public health and Mayhew Derryberry, Director of Health with the U.S. Public Health Service.

The purpose was to strengthen state public health education program goals and objectives and develop a network to share program efforts, ideas and materials. The DHPE membership is diverse, reflects its various organizational structures, and program emphases in numerous categorical public health arenas. Its strengths lie in flexibility and access for community-based prevention, health education and health promotion policy, programs and resources nationwide.


DHPE's mission is to promote the quality practice of public health education and health promotion as core disciplines of public health practice and to advocate for quality health education/health promotion programs and strategies to address the nation's leading health problems.

The organization has the following purposes:

  • To serve as a channel through which directors of health promotion and public health education programs of states and territories may exchange and share methods, techniques and information for the enrichment and improvement of health promotion and public health education programs;
  • To establish position statements which increase public awareness of the necessity of health promotion and public health education;
  • To participate with the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) in promoting health and disease prevention;
  • To identify methods of improving the quality and practice of health promotion and public health education;
  • To elicit the cooperation of and coordination with national, public, private and voluntary agencies related to public health programs; and
  • To provide a forum for continuing education opportunities in health promotion and public health education.

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Minority Health Work Group

In 1998, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) began to work closely with the Minority Health Work Group (MHWG), to further activities that proactively address health issues that impact racial and ethnic communities. The MHWG, under the auspices of DHPE, exists as a partnership initiative with the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion at CDC, to bring specific concerns regarding health disparities to the forefront and to ensure America's health agencies view the health of ALL citizens as being of the utmost importance. The overarching goal of the work group is to provide public health education and health promotion leadership to national, state, local and territorial health agencies and organizations addressing public health issues of racial and ethnic minority populations.

This goal is realized through work group activities centered on the following objectives:

  • To promote and participate in the development and implementation of health education and health promotion efforts among racial and ethnic minority populations at the national, state, territorial and local levels;
  • To recruit and retain minority health professionals in state, local, territorial and national health promotion activities;
  • To provide professional development for minority health professionals/students and assure their participation and representation in conferences, workshops and seminars; and
  • To identify and seek resources to narrow existing gaps in the provision of services for racial and ethnic minority populations.

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Historical Overview

Epidemiological data documenting the disproportionate impact of chronic, communicable and infectious diseases among racial and ethnic minority populations warrants the need for science-based health education and community health promotion interventions. In many national, state and local health agencies, the practitioners possessing the greatest linkages with communities are in public health education. As the national agenda shifts to focus more attention on a research-to-practice focus, these practitioners will play a role that is paramount in efforts to eliminate racial and ethnic disparities. Diverse populations in the United States and its territories require targeted, culturally sensitive, and culturally competent health education interventions and competent, skilled, minority practitioners who are well-suited to target these special populations.

In May 2000, the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and DHPE/MHWG convened a group of faculty members representing those accredited health education and health promotion programs within minority-serving institutions. The purpose of convening this group was to 1) develop strategies for building capacity within these institutions, and 2) support partnerships that might also make use of the talents hidden within these programs. This internship program was developed in direct support of the MHWG objectives and the strategies resulting from the May 2000 meeting with minority-serving faculty members.

The mission of the internship program is to strengthen the academic and professional development of minority students by creating partnerships between minority-serving institutions and the public health community to create a highly qualified, diverse workforce; recruit/retain minorities in public health education, to provide public health leadership, services and better health outcomes for all communities. Its aim encompasses three of the eight goals identified in the document, Building Capacity for Health Promotion Programs in Minority-Serving Institutions. These goals are noted with italics in the list of the eight goals below.

  1. Create partnerships between minority serving institutions and the public health community.
  2. Expand minority student recruitment.
  3. Improve minority student retention.
  4. Strengthen the professional development of minority students.
  5. Increase the presence of minority faculty on campuses.
  6. Enhance the cultural competence of faculty and staff.
  7. Encourage the professional development of faculty and staff.
  8. Acquire appropriate teaching resources, including the latest in educational technologies.

For additional information regarding the Building Capacity document, contact DHPE.

Internship Program Description

The internship program offers students a unique experience to receive firsthand experience in health promotion and health education. The program has been designed to provide students with practical experiences in public health related to the core competencies of health education and to introduce the students to the essentials of public health.

7 Core Competencies of Health Education

  • Assessment of Individual and Community Needs for Health Education
  • Planning Effective Health Education Programs
  • Implementation of Health Education Programs
  • Evaluation of Effectiveness of Health Education Programs
  • Provision of Health Education Services Coordination
  • Acting as a Resource Person in Health Education
  • Communicating health and health education needs and information

10 Essential Public Health Services

  • Monitor health status to identify community health problems.
  • Diagnose and investigate health problems and hazards in the community.
  • Inform, educate and empower people about health issues.
  • Mobilize community partnerships to identify and solve health problems.
  • Develop policies and plans that support individual and community health efforts.
  • Enforce laws and regulations that protect health and ensure safety.
  • Link people to needed personal health services and assure the provision of health care when otherwise unavailable.
  • Assure competent public health and personal health care workforce.
  • Evaluate effectiveness, accessibility, and quality of personal and population-based health services.
  • Research for new insights and innovative solutions to health problems

In addition to developing competencies in health education and essentials of public health, the intern's activities are designed to provide practical experience in the areas of chronic disease prevention and health promotion.

Aging Diabetes
Asthma Tobacco
Cancer Prevention/Intervention
HIV/AIDS Prevention/Intervention
Injury Prevention
Minority Health School Health
Physical Activity
School Health
Reproductive Health
Women's Health
Infant & Children's Health

The interns' activities are designed to align with content areas of health promotion and disease prevention listed below.
Behavioral Science
Program Development/Implementation
Population Based Needs Assessment
Intervention Effectiveness
Intervention Adaption/Replication
Program Evaluation
Social Marketing
Statistics and Surveillance


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Eligibility Criteria

Students are eligible for the internship program if they:

  • Are enrolled in a health education or health promotion program in a four-year college or university designated as a minority-serving institution
  • Are US citizens, non-citizen nationals, or foreign nationals possessing a visa permitting permanent residence in the US, and
  • Have decided or are considering a professional career in health education and health promotions or related public health field.

Minority-serving institutions hold federal classifications as Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU), Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSI) or Tribal Serving Institutions (TSI).

Participating Minority-Serving Institutions

The following minority-serving institutions participate in our program.

Bethune-Cookman College (Daytona Beach, FL)
Central State University (Wilberforce, Ohio)
Clark Atlanta University (Atlanta, GA)
Florida A&M University (Tallahassee, FL)
Hampton University, (Hampton, VA)
Howard University (Washington DC)
Jackson State University (Jackson. MS)
Morehouse School of Medicine (Atlanta, GA)
Morgan State University (Baltimore, MD)
North Carolina Central University (Durham, NC)
Prairie View A&M University (Prairie View, TX)
Spelman College, (Atlanta, GA)
Tennessee State University (TN)
Nashville, TN
Texas Southern University (Houston, TX)
Virginia State University (Petersburg, VA)
West Virginia State College (Institute, WV)

California State University at Fresno (Fresno, CA)
California State University San Bernardino
City University of New York at Leham College (Bronx, NY)
Florida International University (North Miami, FL)
University of Arizona, Tucson (AZ)
University of Puerto Rico (San Juan, PR)
University of Texas at San Antonio Health Sciences Center

Oglala Lakota College (Kyle, SD)

Check if your school is a federal designated minority-serving institution.

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The Application Process

Students must complete and submit the on-line application by the designated deadline. All parts of the application and supporting documents (including letters of recommendation and official transcript) must be received by the deadline in order to be reviewed. Incomplete applications or applications received after the deadline will not be considered.

Privacy Notification Statement

The primary use for any information provided by applicants will be used solely for selecting DHPE/CDC interns and will be disclosed only to members of the Selection Committee and representatives of DHPE and CDC with responsibilities for administering the Internship Program. Some data may be used in its aggregate in management reports designed to evaluate the effectiveness of the Internship Program. There will be no attribution of data specific to any individual application for these reports.

The Review Process

A Selection Committee will convene to review applications and select Internship Candidates. All applications meeting the eligibility criteria received by the deadline will be reviewed competitively. Approvals will be based upon:

  • Completeness of the application (15pts.)
  • Topic of interest for professional experience (25pts.)
  • Academic performance (20pts.)
  • Personal Statement (30pts.)
  • Professional Recommendations (10pts.)

Points will be assigned by reviewers to each of these categories and computed based upon the weighting and importance of each category. Those applications within a certain defined approval rating level will be considered for funding. Final decisions will be based upon available resources, placement requests and availability, and placement site needs. Occasionally, the Selection Committee may wish to interview internship applicants. If so, the expenses associated with an interview (phone charges, travel costs, etc.) will be covered by the Internship Program. Candidates will receive notification of acceptance into the internship program at least one month prior to the placement. Final announcements and awards will be rendered in accordance with the Program Timeline.

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Program Timeline and Important Dates
Spring Semester Summer Session Fall Semester
Application Deadline October 15 March 1 June 15
Acceptance Notification December 1 April 15 August 1
Internship Begins January 15 June 1 September 15
Internship Ends April 15 August 31 December 15

The internship program will adjust beginning and ending dates to accommodate students who attend institutions that operate on a quarter calendar system. Additionally, the internship will alter to match academic institutions semester schedules. However, application deadlines remain constant.

Performance Period

Generally, internships are undertaken within a period of one semester (approximately 12 weeks in duration).

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The Placement Process

universityThe DHPE/CDC Internship Program aims to place students of minority-serving institutions in public health settings (federal, national, state and local health agencies, community-based health organizations, voluntary health agencies, etc.) for practical experience in the field of public health education.

Applicants may select and prioritize three preferred placement opportunities on their application. While every attempt will be made to place students in one of their three preferred placement sites, such can not be guaranteed.

Once the applicant accepts a placement offer, he or she will be responsible for working with their academic advisor, DHPE's staff and the placement preceptor to transition into their position. The academic advisor and the placement preceptor will be responsible for the supervision and evaluation of the intern's performance. The intern will also evaluate the preceptor and internship experience. Further information regarding the actual internship will be provided during the placement process.

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The academic level of the intern, at the time the completed application is submitted determines the salary for federal interns. Interns will be paid a stipend at a level allowable for federally funded training programs. The Internship Program will not provide health care coverage. Interns should maintain the health care coverage available to them as a matriculating student of their academic institution. The stipend is intended to cover living expenses including housing and transportation during the internship period. The scale below is based on forty hours per week.

Undergraduate Students $480 per week
Graduate Students $600 per week

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HousingStudents must make their own transportation and identify available housing for the internship program. However, as a service to our interns, DHPE may help identify housing arrangements.

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The Internship Program and its placement process provide a channel for the development of partnerships between public health agencies and minority-serving institutions. The Internship Program is an ideal component of such a partnership in that it provides benefits to each of the three parties involved, the student, the academic program, and the public health agency.


An Internship experience is a unique mechanism to acquire practical training in health education and promotion. The program provides students an opportunity to acquire actual work experience related to their academic preparation and coursework. The internship is intended to complement educational preparation and training for the transition from student to professional. The DHPE internship experience will provide the student the opportunity to:
  • Experience firsthand the role of a public health educator
  • Expand his/her knowledge of the field and its professionals
  • Observe and practice applications of theory to specific situations
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of their training in an actual work setting
  • Begin to transition from student to professional


As a participant in the internship program, the student has responsibilities to DHPE, their academic institution and health agency to ensure successful completion of the program. The expected conduct of the student and his/hers responsibilities to the health agency in relation to the internship are:

  • To become familiar with and conform to the health agency's regulations
  • To plan thoroughly for all assignments
  • To prepare for and participate constructively in periodic Preceptor conferences by being open to performance feedback, ready to ask questions and present constructive ideas with respect to the internship
  • Notify the preceptor prior to an absence from work
  • Consult professionally with the Preceptor and Faculty Advisor when confronted with problems the intern cannot satisfactorily resolve
  • To remind the preceptor to complete mid and final evaluation forms and other required forms

The student's responsibilities to the academic institution and health program, prior to and during the internship period include:

  • Prepare and review with the faculty advisor providing the recommendation, a personal resume that outlines the student's background, training and interests, prior to the placement
  • Represent the academic institution well by performing in an exemplary manner
  • Carry necessary correspondences to and from the academic institution and the health agency
  • Complete the activity logs in order to keep the faculty informed of experiences and work carried out for the health agency throughout the internship period
  • Accurately complete and submit in a timely manner, timesheets, reports and assignments to the preceptor and faculty advisor

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Academic Institutions and faculty have invested and dedicated a tremendous amount of resources in the development of training curricula and programs to insure students become competent professionals as they matriculate through the institution.

The internship program provides an opportunity for the academic institution to share its resources with the health professions community and market the university's programs and students.

  • Enhance the educational process and broaden the scope of the health education program
  • Provide a setting for the application of theoretical knowledge
  • Provide faculty members with partners within health departments and other health agencies
  • Provide information to support the programs continuing evaluation


Academic Institutions providing students for the internship program have responsibilities to the student and health agency to ensure a successful program. The academic advisor's responsibilities to the student during the intern's experience include:

  • Review with the student, his or her personal resume to determine the student's needs and agree to provide academic support and advisement throughout the internship
  • Consult with the student periodically during the internship
  • Analyze the health agency's evaluations of the student's performance

The academic institution/faculty advisor's responsibilities to the health agency prior to and during the internship period include:

  • Recommend only students who meet the internship requirements
  • Participate in the student's evaluation
  • Assist the preceptor, whenever appropriate, in guiding the intern's experience
  • Assist in the interpretation of the educational goals and purpose of the internship program to the agency
  • Work in concert with the preceptor to resolve disputes or grievances that may arise during the internship experience

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A solid training in health promotion and health education allows the student practicum experience in public health environments where they have ample time to apply knowledge and skills acquired from their courses of study. This requires cooperating agencies and preceptors who are skilled practitioners willing to oversee the professional development of students. For the health departments and other health agencies, this internship program should:

  • Provide an opportunity to be involved in the preparation of future health education practitionersProvide a direct linkage to a pool of trained, exceptional minority candidates for positions which may exist or evolveProvide an opportunity to expand relationships with academic institutions leading to potential partnerships beyond the internship program
  • Provide an opportunity to energize programs with fresh perspectives
  • Evaluate, through contact and collaborations with faculty, the degree to which agency plans and programs align with current theory, research and scientific approaches

A preceptor is a recognized health professional with status and access to other key professionals having experience with staff and the commitment to improve the student intern's ability to carry out educationally based tasks. Preceptors must be familiar with the competencies necessary for professional practice within the public health and health education fields, use these skills in their own practice and assume applied academic roles with the interns.

Effective preceptors exhibit three common characteristics:

  • Demonstrate interpersonal skill, which include friendliness toward, respect for, and confidence in students; an enthusiasm for teaching; and a genuine interest in the profession;
  • Serve as an appropriate resource person; explain problems or concepts and the reasoning behind their actions or decisions; provide guidance and are available to students;
  • Evaluate the student's knowledge, skills and performance; and identify areas for improvement.

Preceptors are the professionals who help students bridge the gap between educational training and practice. Therefore, the preceptor can largely determine whether a student has the training, preparation, and competence to enter the public health profession. The DHPE Internship Program seeks to identify qualified health promotion and health education professionals to serve as preceptors. Interested professionals should apply and submit application on-line.


As a participant in the internship program, the health preceptor agency has responsibilities to the academic institutions and students to ensure successful completion of the program. The expected responsibilities of the health agency responsibilities to the student in relation to the internship are to:

  • Prepare the agency and staff for the arrival of the student intern (including identifying physical space and necessary equipment)
  • Provide the intern with an overview of the agency's purpose, policies, programs and facilities
  • Inform the intern of pertinent agency regulations
  • Schedule with the student suitable working hours and a program of responsibilities, learning objectives and assignments
  • Evaluate the intern on a continuous and systematic basis
  • Provide the intern with opportunities that will lead to professional growth, achievement and success
  • Recognize the intern is a student and not expect performance on a level comparable to full time staff
  • Keep record of the student's work and progress
  • Encourage self-evaluation by the student
  • Hold periodic conferences with the student and indicate progress and areas of improvement

The expected responsibilities to the Academic Institution include:

  • Seek faculty conferences or assistance whenever necessary
  • Evaluate the student's internship experience
  • Compete and submit evaluation forms on-line

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