Most health education jobs require a bachelor's degree in public health, health education or health promotion. Many government jobs, such as federal positions and those in state public health agencies, require a master's or doctoral degree. Normally, graduates of health education programs also complete an internship as part of their coursework.
Some employers also require a Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) credential. Offered by the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing, the CHES designation is available to those who complete or are within three months of completing a health education degree and who pass a test. Those with more experience and education can also obtain the Master Certified Health Education Specialist (MCHES) credential.
Health Education Job Market
In 2013, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that there were 56,720 health educators in the United States. The profession will see faster than average growth in the next ten years, with that number increasing by 21 percent. The need to reduce health care costs by educating people on living healthier lifestyles will drive growth in the profession. Health educators can help the government and insurers contain health care expenditures by encouraging preventive measures and the utilization of existing health resources. The states with the highest concentration of health educators are Washington, D.C., Vermont and Alaska.
Health Education Job Salary Information
The mean annual wage for health educators in 2013 was $53,800. The top-earning ten percent of the profession made an average of $87,770, while the lowest-earning ten percent made $28,680. Health educators working in the federal government had the highest average wage -- $94,970 -- while those working in outpatient care centers had the lowest average wage -- $46,800. The top-paying states for health educators in descending order are Maryland, Washington, D.C., Georgia, Rhode Island and Delaware.