Undergraduate degree workforce entry
A Bachelor degree can open up opportunities in research or clinical practice. Here you can find career profiles from our Bachelor course graduates, learn about daily activities, get pointers on the types of organisations you should be keeping an eye on, and the types of roles you should consider applying for.
If you’re already enrolled in or considering further study such as a Masters degree, Graduate Certificate or Diploma, click here to read similar information for job-seekers with postgraduate qualifications.
These graduates have used their Monash Bachelor degrees as a launchpad to amazing careers across refugee health, cancer research and clinical trials. If you’re feeling uncertain about what you should do with your degree, you aren’t alone – all of them felt the same way!
Click through to read detailed interviews describing how they got their first jobs, the type of work they’ve done since, why they love public health, and their advice to students.
Course: B Health Sci / B Social Work
Course: B Health Sci (Hons)
Course: B Health Sci (Hons)
Course: B Health Sci (Hons)
Top tips: we’ve asked all of our career profile candidates for their top tips for students entering the workforce. To cut to the chase, click here for their summarised advice.
Fields of work
Health Promotion: The WHO defines health promotion as the process of enabling people to increase control over, and to improve, their health. It moves beyond a focus on individual behaviour towards a wide range of social and environmental interventions. Health promotion has plenty of jobs for new Bachelor graduates, so if you’re community-minded and enjoy interacting with your fellow humans, this could be a fitting career.
Research: A Bachelor degree in public health can open the door to entry-level research roles in teams specialising in a huge variety of clinical domains. Typical new-graduate duties include data collection and entry, participant recruitment and consenting and assisting with study paperwork. It may also involve field-work.
Government: Local councils, state governments, statutory authorities and the Commonwealth government all employ public health professionals. Some roles around policy development are heavily research based – involving literature reviews and writing – whilst others are more hands-on, rolling out community based projects. Local councils and statutory authorities can be a great source of jobs for new Bachelor graduates.
Health Communications: You can combine your degree with a passion for communications in a variety of roles within research projects, health service or research institutes, or even communications agencies specialising in healthcare. Health communicators ensure the most important health messages are communicated effectively across web, social media, pamphlets, publications, videos and more.
Biostatistics: Biostatisticians are a highly sought-after commodity with plenty of job opportunities across research, industry and government. You need to be great with numbers, but also be able to communicate complex statistical concepts to those less numerate than you. Biostatistics can be applied across the whole range of clinical domains. Postgraduate qualifications are recommended.
Occupational & Environmental Health: From assessing workplace safety compliance through to investigating impacts of environmental contaminants on exposed communities, this is a diverse field with plenty of job options. Postgraduate qualifications are generally recommended, although some Bachelor opportunities are available.
Global Health: Want to improve healthcare in developing nations? A career in global health is both challenging and rewarding, and is far more complex than the romanticised notion of an aid worker providing disaster relief. If you’re interested in learning about other cultures, and advocating for basic human rights across healthcare, this might be for you. Due to popularity, postgraduate qualifications are generally recommended.
Education: Passing on your skills and knowledge to others is the most sustainable way to build understanding of health concepts and ensure the future of public health. Learn how you can combine your knowledge with basic teaching qualifications.
Administrator, Officer, Analyst, Coordinator or Manager? Unfortunately, there is no industry standardisation here, but these criteria should help you identify jobs for which a recent Bachelor graduate would be a realistic candidate:
- Entry-level positions requiring a Bachelor’s degree and minimal (<2yrs) work experience.
- Typical salary range $55,000 – $65,000.
- Jobs containing expectations of undertaking training, and using practical and administrative skills (data entry, conducting interviews, venepuncture).
- Volunteer or part-time roles. They’re a great way to make yourself known as an invaluable asset to an organisation, generating opportunities for internal promotion – don’t dismiss working a couple of .4FTE roles!
- Apply for contract roles, rather than permanent. Without evidence of full-time public health work already on your CV, many employers want to try you out first before making a permanent offer of employment. Taking on short-term roles gives them a chance to get to know you, and if you’re a good fit, they may encourage you to apply for other roles internally.
- Look for positions with the word ‘assistant’ in the job title: Research Assistant, Technical Assistant, Data Entry Assistant. ‘Coordinator’ and ‘Administrator’ roles are sometimes appropriate for new graduates.
If you’re dreaming a little bigger, applying for a couple of more senior roles can build confidence and help you understand higher level criteria you’ll need to meet. Generally you’ll need to have some solid work experience under your belt to have a chance for roles with ‘Senior’, ‘Officer’, ‘Manager’ or ‘Project’ in the title.
Roles looking for strategic, supervisory, or planning skills also tend to require significant work experience or postgraduate qualifications.
Health advocacy groups and charities: Groups promoting awareness of disease states and advocating for those with disease will sometimes have entry-level roles in research, health promotion or communication. National groups tend to have more funding and so more plentiful opportunities. Examples: Cancer Council Australia, Kidney Health Australia and Heart Foundation.
Universities and research institutes: University medical faculties may have public health research schools, as well as independent medical research institutes with a strong focus on international and public health. Examples: Monash SPHPM, Burnet Institute, Baker Institute.
State or Commonwealth health departments: The Victorian Department of Health and Human Services is a major employer, and can provide you with the opportunity to be involved in large public health projects and contribute to policy development. At a Federal level, most Department of Health jobs are Canberra-based, but interstate opportunities do arise.
Statutory authorities: These are planning and management agencies that often run in parallel to state health departments. There may be significant cross-over between their roles and traditional public health roles. Examples: Worksafe, VicRoads, VicHealth, Environmental Protection Agency.
Primary care partners and local councils: Some local councils prioritise public health in their strategic plans, and engage in local health promotion programs. Government affiliated groups may require people with public health knowledge for data analysis. Examples: Hume City Council (VIC), Mitchell Shire Council (VIC), Primary Healthcare Networks, Medicare.
Pharma, health tech and private health insurers: These groups may need people with public health knowledge to inform communications, data analysis, research projects and health promotion programs. Examples: GSK, Telstra Health, Medibank, BUPA.
Health service providers: Both public and private health service providers will have roles suitable for new graduates, potentially in research and communications. These can range from hospitals through to private GP networks and aged care services. Examples: Alfred Health, private hospital groups, Bolton Clarke, Monash Health, St John’s Ambulance.
Multinational health providers or planners: Field work in overseas aid camps is highly competitive, but NGOs may have local job openings that can get your foot in the door. Examples: MSF, Red Cross, WHO, AusAID.