BEST FIT Characteristics for PHAP Associates

PHAP's associate application period is now closed.

The next associate application period will be in early 2025.

Are you interested in PHAP, but not sure if the program is right for you—or if you’re a good fit for the program? PHAP’s “BEST FIT” model is designed to help potential associates consider whether PHAP is an appropriate program to advance their public health career. This page gives an overview of several characteristics that might help you determine whether you will be successful as an associate. For more information about PHAP eligibility requirements, visit the Am I Eligible? page.

BEST FIT Characteristics for PHAP Associates.
Characteristic Expanded Definition
Big-picture thinker Associates are expected to “see the bigger picture” beyond their specific area(s) of experience or interest. Associates should understand how the work they do while in PHAP “fits into” the field of public health, as associates are trained to be public health generalists, not specific subject matter experts.
Effective communicator Associates should have strong oral and written communication skills in order to share ideas and information accurately and succinctly.
Socially and culturally inclusive Public health professionals frequently work with individuals who may be from different backgrounds. There may be differences in race, religion, ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation, and philosophical views. Associates should be aware and respectful of people from different cultures. They should be free from prejudice and bigotry, be unbiased and tolerant, and be accepting of differences.
Thrive in a dynamic environment Emerging and challenging public health issues create a fast-paced, responsive work environment. Associates should be able to apply lessons learned, take a strong scientific approach, make changes as directed, and respond quickly as part of a team.
Flexible Associates are expected to adapt quickly to change and do so with a positive attitude. Associates should be able to function under uncertainty and frequently changing conditions.
Intelligent Associates are expected to have a proven track record of academic success and have the potential to comprehend and apply new information and ideas.
Tactile learner PHAP is a predominately “on-the-job experience” training program. Associates are expected to learn the structure and function of a public health program, deliver public health services and gain competence in the technical elements of carrying out public health program activities.