LGBT Health Certificate

Why LGBT Health and Wellness?

LGBT populations face unique and challenging health and wellness issues as well as disparities in health care delivery systems.  There are conceptual and practical skills necessary to identify, analyze, and address these issues—including the design and evaluation of programs, interventions, epidemiological research, and policy analysis related to sexual orientation and gender identity.

Additionally, the LGBT community reflects the diversity of the general population, including racial / ethnic, disabled, rural, and low socio-economic populations identified by U.S. public health officials as having experienced significant health care problems.  Addressing LGBT health and wellness provides benefits to the larger community of public health professionals by helping to disentangle the impact of having more than one minority status.

The Certificate

This 15-credit certificate program offers students an opportunity to learn from and work with leading faculty and researchers in the field of LGBT health. Members of the Center for LGBT Health Research provide multidisciplinary and collaborative opportunities within the academic medical center and the local community. Faculty members also work collaboratively with faculty at other universities and leaders in LGBT healthcare across the nation, which can provide additional research and learning opportunities for students. The certificate program  is designed for post-baccalaureate and graduate students who have an interest in LGBT communities and are seeking to develop skills necessary to effectively address health issues of the LGBT communities.


Core course work topics include historical development of LGBT health focus area, a systems overview of conditions of greater prevalence among LGBT populations, review of theories of personal and community based health interventions, cultural competency skill development related to LGBT health care delivery, and development of critical thinking skills. The certificate program will work closely with the Center to identify appropriate optional practica for students, monitor those practica, and evaluate student performance. The practica may take place within the center itself or with a variety of public and private sector agencies. Students will be required to submit a written thesis or project related to LGBT health and wellness and to present their work to peers and members of the Center. Students enrolled in degree programs within the Graduate School of Public Health will be subject to requirements for comprehensive examinations and master’s essay through their respective department. For a listing of required and elective courses, check the most current LGBT Certificate Requirements.

Qualifications for Admission

Post-baccalaureate or graduate students may apply for the program, including currently matriculated students, non-degree post-baccalaureate students who may take the certificate for academic credit, and students from other graduate programs. For graduate students taking the program for academic credit, the program will have admission standards equivalent to those for a master’s degree at the Graduate School of Public Health. Matriculated students must meet all departmental and school wide requirements for admission. Non-degree post-baccalaureate students must meet the school’s requirements for admission for non-degree students. You can find more admissions information by visiting Public Health Admissions at Pitt Public Health.

Admissions Decisions

Applications meeting school admissions criteria are reviewed by the faculty throughout the year. If the committee recommends admission and the assistant dean approves, the applicant receives an official letter of the offer of admission. Applicants denied admission receive a letter from the program directors with suggestions to improve qualifications should they choose to reapply at a later time.

For more information, contact:

Nina Markovic, PhD

James E Egan, PhD

Mackey R Friedman, PhD