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Graduate Certificate in Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene


The Certificate in Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) at the Rollins School of Public Health (RSPH) is offered through the Center for Global Safe Water, Sanitation and Hygiene at Emory University (CGSW) and aims to train graduate students to be competitive for WASH-related careers. Please be advised, the Graduate Certificate in Water, Sanitation & Hygiene is not available for online or distance learning at this time. It is only offered to enrolled RSPH students. The WASH Certificate is not offered as an online course at this time.

Program Competencies

  • Describe the multidisciplinary nature of WASH-related issues;
  • Practice WASH-related laboratory methods;
  • Examine potential solutions for WASH-related challenges at the household and community level;
  • Recognize the role of policy in shaping the WASH landscape;
  • Identify entities working in the WASH sphere; and
  • Students must complete a WASH related practicum. They must also generate WASH-related knowledge through completing a capstone or a thesis. HPM students please contact Kathleen “Kat” Peters, the WASH certificate coordinator at kpeter5@emory.edu, to learn about alternative thesis and capstone requirements.

Program Requirements

Any RSPH student graduating who fulfills the following criteria will be awarded a WASH certificate:

  • Complete a minimum of 12 credit hours of WASH-related coursework. (Please note: your thesis or capstone counts for 4 of the 12 credit hrs required) with at least one methods-related course, one biology-related course, and a cumulative GPA of 3.3 or greater in all WASH-related courses.
  • Attend two CGSW-sponsored seminars per year (4 total in two years); and
  • Successfully complete a WASH-related capstone or thesis and APE/Practicum.

This is a self-guided certificate program. You must undertake the following steps in order to successfully complete the WASH certificate program:

      1. Send an email with your intention to pursue the WASH certificate program as soon as possible to Kat Peters (kpeter5@emory.edu), the WASH Certificate Coordinator. You will be added to the CGSW listserv which will inform you of upcoming seminars and other WASH-related activities.
      2. Students who plan to use a WASH-related capstone/thesis/APE that is not supervised by a CGSW faculty or staff member must fill out a Capstone/Thesis/APE Provisional Approval in order to receive approval from Dr. Christine Moe, CGSW Director. Without this provisional approval, there is no guarantee that the capstone/thesis/APE will fulfill the certificate requirement.
      3. WASH certificate-seeking students who would like to use a non-listed, WASH-related class towards the certificate requirements must apply for provisional approval from Dr. Christine Moe. Without this provisional approval, there is no guarantee that the intended class will fulfill the certificate requirement. Please complete a Provisional Course Approval Form and return it to Kat Peters and Dr. Christine Moe.
      4. All students must complete a Declaration Form prior to the graduating semester: no later than February 15th for Spring graduates, July 1st for Summer graduates, and September 15th for Fall graduates. This form will be used to verify that all of the WASH certificate requirements are on track to being fulfilled. Students will be sent the updated Declaration form prior to their graduating semester to complete and return to Kathleen Peters at kpeter5@emory.edu

 FOR ALL CERTIFICATE STUDENTS – Please contact your ADAP or Certificate Coordinator(s) with questions/concerns

  1. Your certificate requirements are the certificate requirements for the year you matriculated into, or started, the MPH or MSPH program.  For example, if you matriculated into the MPH program Fall 2020 but did not declare interest in completing a certificate program until Summer 2021, you must still follow the Fall 2020 certificate requirements.
  1. Students may not count required coursework for their degree program towards a certificate, with the exception of electives.  The RSPH catalog lists all degree program requirements by Department.

Examples of what cannot “double count” include:

  1. For GH or Global Epidemiology students’ classes that are being used to fulfill the “GH Methods” Requirement of their degree.  The most overlap in these requirements are seen in WASH and CHE.
  2. For any Epidemiology or Global Epidemiology students, classes that are fulfilling the “Substantive” or “Methods” selective may not be used towards a certificate.
  3. For EH and GEH students, EH 520, “Toxicology,” may not be used as an elective course for GME or any other certificate program.
  4. For HPM students, HPM 502 may not be used to count towards any certificate requirements.
  5. For BSHES students, no BSHES required courses such as BSHES 532, BSHES 538, or BSHES 539 can count towards any certificate requirement.
  6. Students who are pursuing multiple certificates, may “double count” elective courses towards two certificates.  For example, if a GH MPH student takes GH 560: Monitoring and Evaluation, and it is not being used towards the GH Methods Requirement, it could be used as a course for both CHE and WASH Certificate requirements.

WASH-related Courses

Courses approved for the WASH Certificate – updated July 2023

To read more about CGSW Core & Affiliated Faculty click here.




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