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Master of Public Health in Community-Oriented Public Health Practice

Practicum & Capstone Project

The practicum and capstone project are important components of the UW Master of Public Health in Community-Oriented Public Health Practice program. These service-learning opportunities allow you to apply your classroom learning to significant, hands-on work in a local health organization or agency.


During the first year of the program, you’ll take part in a practicum, where you’ll focus on gaining practical skills in public health practice. Students complete 160 hours of practicum work over two quarters with the guidance of a preceptor (mentor at the organization) and a faculty adviser.

Our faculty compiles a comprehensive list of practicum opportunities. Many students choose to do their practicum projects with Public Health – Seattle & King County. Students may also pursue opportunities with other public health nonprofits and community agencies in the Puget Sound area, such as Urban Indian Health Institute, Seattle HIV/AIDS Planning Council and Planned Parenthood.

Practicum Examples

  • Assessing the Acceptability of “One Key Question” Regarding Pregnancy
  • Creating a Trauma-Informed Practice Training Toolkit: Adverse Childhood Experiences
  • Investigating PHSKC’s Climate Change Approach
  • Smoke-Free Housing in King County
  • Reaching Target Populations after the Affordable Care Act
  • Variation in Data Quality across Seattle’s School-Based Health Centers
  • Violence and Injury Prevention

​See more examples of past practicum projects.

Capstone Project

During the second year, COPHP students select a community-based setting for a yearlong capstone project that allows them to apply their advanced public health competencies and skills. Placement sites include schools, community centers, policy advocacy groups, food banks and a variety of other kinds of organizations. The capstone often takes place at a site where students can develop relationships and expertise in a specialized area as preparation for their job search.

Capstone projects demonstrate the students' fully developed public health skills, such as the ability to perform data collection and analysis, program evaluation and program development and implementation. Students present their projects at a special year-end capstone presentation event open to their preceptors, families and friends.

Capstone Project Proposals

Capstone Project Examples

  • Cervical Cancer Screening Among Refugees in the Seattle Area
  • Creating an IUD Self-Removal Guide
  • Lessons From Abroad: What Can Seattle Learn from European Drug Consumption Rooms?
  • No Ordinary Flu: Pandemic Influenza Preparedness in a Graphic Novel
  • The Role of Labor Unions in Creating Working Conditions That Promote Health
  • Working Conditions for Farmworkers in Washington State’s Marijuana Industry

See the full list of past COPHP capstone projects to get an idea of the range of subjects that students focus on.

For more information about the capstone project, see the Capstone Handbook.