Health promotion

Work with communities to plan and develop ways to help individuals and populations improve and manage their health.

Health promotion focuses on exploring the causes of poor health, and what can be done to advocate for, create and sustain good health and positive change in individuals, groups and communities. This is achieved through health research, the development of effective health and public policy and the application of health promotion initiatives to implement change.

Students develop a unique set of skills and knowledge, especially in the collection and analysis of qualitative and quantitative data using a variety of methods, relationship management, presentation, planning and organisation.

Roles and career pathways

Graduates with an undergraduate qualification may find work in roles such as health promotion practitioner, Māori health promoter, Pasifika health promoter, youth health leader, or drug information adviser. Experience or additional qualifications in content development, marketing and communications or web design can be useful to progress into a wider range of roles. Knowledge and understanding of hauora, te Reo and tikanga Māori or Pasifka cultures and health practice are also important.

Those with a postgraduate qualification or previous work experience may find roles such as programme designers, project managers or policy analysts.

Graduates may also work in related industries such as social services or education in communication, training or coordination roles.

Where Health Promotion graduates work

Health Promotion graduates will apply their skills in a range of health and related organisations, including District Health Boards (DHBs), school or kura kaupapa health services, Public health organisations (PHOs), or non-governmental organisations (NGOs). Here are just a few examples:

Build relevant skills and experience

Part-time work and volunteering during study all help to increase your job prospects when you graduate. Programmes such as Wellington Plus, Wellington International Leadership Programme (WILP) offer opportunities for students from all disciplines to gain diverse voluntary and leadership experience. Volunteering in the health sector will provide valuable experience. The Student Wellbeing Awareness Team and student support space The Bubble at Victoria University of Wellington offer good opportunities to gain real-life experience in areas such as health promotion and mental health through peer support initiatives. The Bachelor of Health will be offering a Research and Enquiry in Health or Health Internship course in 2020, which will provide students the opportunity to develop applied research or workplace skills and experience. Places for the health internship are limited. The WFHSS Internship course run by the Wellington Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences also helps develop leadership skills and practical work place experience.

Make career connections

Networking and making connections with individuals and groups while you study can help you learn more about career opportunities. Getting involved with Hauora—Health Promotion Forum of New Zealand, Public Health Association of New Zealand will build connections. Wellington Young Professionals, university clubs and mentoring programmes such as Alumni as Mentors for final-year students can all enhance your employability while studying.