Public Health Community Engagement & Partnerships

Overlook of Boston

As part of the mission of the Public Health program, students and graduates aim to provide community service that has a meaningful impact in making communities healthier and more equitable places.

One way that that Tufts has intentionally built service as part of our MPH programs is through the Applied Learning Experience (ALE), which is a requirement of the degree programs.

For the ALE, students spend at least 160 hours on a project-based practicum for a public health organization, providing evaluations, analysis, strategic planning, policy analysis, and communication deliverables for the field site and completing a culminating academic paper and presentation that integrates their applied learning and academic competencies. Students can complete their ALE practicums domestically at public health departments, hospitals, not-for-profit organizations, research institutions, or travel abroad for a global health ALE. Their experiences are often professionally transformational, as MPH students apply their classroom-based knowledge and skills to real world public health issues. MD/MPH students can participate in a seven-week summer field experience between their first and second year in which they can work with community organizations either in the United States or internationally.

The Public Health program also provides students, graduates, and practicing professionals the opportunity to complete the Plain Language for Health (PL4H) online workshop, which is a series of training modules that provide ongoing professional development aimed at sharpening their health communications skills so that they can better present health interventions and strategies in their work and in their communities. 

The community service partnerships and opportunities below have a special focus on addressing public health issues and supporting public health efforts.

  • Sharewood is led by volunteer medical and public health students and physicians affiliated with Tufts University School of Medicine and Cambridge Health Alliance, with help from other health professional students and translators from Tufts University.

    Students educate clients about healthy lifestyle, nutrition, exercise, and the importance of medical wellness. Learn more about the project.

  • ADAPT is a collaboration of administrators, researchers, clinicians, and students affiliated with Tufts Medical Center, Tufts University, and community leaders from six community organizations in Boston’s Chinatown. The collaboration follows principles of community-engaged partnerships, including community-identified goals and priorities, shared decision-making, and co-learning. Since its inception, ADAPT has prioritized building trusting relationships with the Chinatown community.

    ADAPT membership is open to individuals and organizations who are interested in community-academic research partnerships focusing on Asian health, and who are committed to supporting and promoting ADAPT’s mission, vision, and strategic priorities.

    View their membership information and application, if interested in partnering with ADAPT.

  • The Academic Public Health Corps (APHC) is a program of the Academic Health Department at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Formed at the request of the Baker-Polito Administration and the COVID Command Center, the APHC provides teams of corps members who are alumni, staff, faculty, and students from participating academic institutions to local boards of health across Massachusetts. 

    The APHC mission is to leverage a large workforce of public health students and alumni to augment, amplify, and promote public health efforts. This includes health communications, health equity, public health administration, and other needs as identified by local boards of health. 

    APHC members are matched with local public health departments in Massachusetts to address their most pressing needs related to COVID-19 and other local public health concerns, including contact tracing, communications, and promoting health equity.

    Public health students and professionals can register to become APHC members online.

  • This professional development opportunity helps students, graduates, and practicing professionals better serve their communities by learning skills, tools, and strategies to better communicate health information in ways people can understand.

    The workshop takes place every spring and consists of  a series of online modules designed to provide participants with a unique opportunity to meet and learn from others doing similar work.

    Learn more about PL4H.