A Fork in the Road for Environmental Health Workforce Development and U.S. Public Health

Author ORCID Identifier

Jason Marion ORCID iD iconhttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-5177-889X


Environmental Health Science

Document Type


Publication Date



Despite noticeable interest in the scientific aspects of the public health profession by current and entering students, the diversity of content delivered by various academic programs, as well as the lack of nationwide program availability, has drawn attention by health policy researchers. To paraphrase Robert Frost and Rachel Carson, these entering and undecided college students driven towards a career in environmental public health stand now where two roads diverge. One road—a solid road to a career in disease prevention through environmental health—is built upon a foundation comprised of science and technical expertise. The other road—the road more frequently traveled—provides beautiful signage advertising the same career destination, but often leads to dead ends or arduous detours due to a weak foundation not capable of meeting the demands of an increasingly complex domestic and global environment.

Journal Title

Journal of Environmental Health