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Public Health Careers

CDC NERD Academy characters group together.

Browse the collection of public health careers featured across all modules. Each poster spotlights a public health career professional and describes what they do, who they work with, where they work, what skills they use, and what qualifications they need.

Download any of these posters and display in the classroom for reference and discussion as students complete lesson plan activities. To learn more about public health STEM careers, visit See Yourself in a Public Health Career (


An epidemiologist, also known as a disease detective, investigates the causes of diseases, how diseases are spread, and how diseases can be prevented or controlled.

male epidemiologist standing with hand on hips.

DOWNLOADABLE Poster pdf icon[297 KB, 1 Page, 508]

Infection Prevention Specialist

An infection prevention specialist helps develop ways to detect, prevent, and control the spread of disease in healthcare settings which helps keep patients and staff safe.

Woman epidemiologist standing with lab coat.

DOWNLOADABLE Poster pdf icon[249 KB, 1 Page, 508]

Behavioral Scientist

A behavioral scientist studies why people behave the way they do and what factors influence decisions and encourage or discourage changes in behaviors. They use what they learn and know about human behavior to develop effective science science-based interventions and programs to help people make positive changes.

Behavioral Scientist standing holding folder in hand.

DOWNLOADABLE Poster pdf icon[342 KB, 1 Page, 508]


Biostatisticians provide consultation on data collection methods and analyze data to help answer health-related questions. They often use mathematics and statistical computer software programs to analyze large data sets and present findings. They prepare scientific reports using graphs and tables designed to make the data easier to understand. They also discuss limitations of analyses to prevent misconceptions about the data.

Woman biostatistician sitting a in wheel chair holding folder and pencil.

DOWNLOADABLE Poster pdf icon[405 KB, 1 Page, 508]

Health Communication Specialist

A health communication specialist creates communication strategies, messages, and products to educate the public, news media, and other audience segments on health issues. During an outbreak response, they develop messages and visuals that communicate culturally relevant, timely and actionable information.

Male health communication specialist standing holding phone.

DOWNLOADABLE Poster pdf icon[315 KB, 1 Page, 508]

Laboratory Scientist

A laboratory scientist uses laboratory equipment to analyze samples and substances. They can help collect and safely ship samples, perform laboratory testing, and interpret testing results. Laboratory scientists might also help develop and test new types of diagnostic and screening tests, often leading to new technology and more rapid and accurate results. They are committed to maintaining a safe and effective work environment and to generating accurate results in a timely fashion.

woman laboratory scientist wearing googles, overcoat, and holding a vial.

DOWNLOADABLE Poster pdf icon[375 KB, 1 Page, 508]

Public Health Nurse

A public health nurse plays a vital role in disease prevention and promoting community health and safety. They look at health trends, identify health risk factors, and work towards improving access to health services for all communities. They also work with the health department and healthcare facilities to design and implement health education campaigns and disease prevention activities.

Woman public health nurse standing holding board and pen.

DOWNLOADABLE Poster pdf icon[321 KB, 1 Page, 508]

Outbreak Team

During an outbreak investigation, public health experts work as a team. They each bring diverse backgrounds, specialized skills, and experiences that contribute to the overall goal of reducing the spread of disease.

Outbreak response team.

DOWNLOADABLE Poster pdf icon[406 KB, 1 Page, 508]