9 Sexiest Jobs in Public Health

sexy public health tech jobsJanuary is National Mentoring Month, and one way I like to spend my time is mentoring people who want jobs or internships in public health, youth health, or health tech, but aren’t sure how to get started.

Working in the field of public health can actually be pretty sexy. Now, when I say sexy, I’m not talking about eye candy like Doctor McDreamy, True Bloods’ Jesus Velasquez, or Lizzy Caplan as Masters of Sex‘s Virginia Johnson (though ain’t nothing wrong with that kind of sexy).

What makes jobs in public health truly sexy is the opportunity to talk to people honestly and openly about sex and sexual health to help them lead healthier, happier lives.

In no particular order, here are the 9 sexiest jobs in public health, and how you can learn more about starting a career in these professions.

1. Sex Educator

When folks think about being in the field of public health and getting to talk about sex, most people first think of sex educators. Sex educators provide one-on-one or group-level education on sexual health topics like birth control, sexually transmitted infections and prevention, healthy relationships, sexual pleasure, and more. Sex educators can work with teens, college students, or adults. For an overview of the different ways to start a career, check out this guide to becoming a sex educator.

2. Digital Communications Manager or Blogger

By using a blog or social media to share information sexuality or sexual health, you’d bring sexy sharing to the internet! Some people conduct their entire career virtually, while others also do presentations, workshops, and trainings. Some work independently, others for organizations with robust digital strategies, like the HHS. The beauty of online education tools like blogging and social media is that you can reach people who are eager to learn about all sorts of sexuality and sexual health topics, regardless of location. Tufts University is just one place that offers training and education in digital health communications.

3. Program Coordinator or Manager

While this title might not sound super sexy, programmatic positions are a great way to get involved in sexual health. While not all program coordinators and program managers do direct education or outreach, they will support programs that do at organizations that focus on LGBTQ issues, healthy relationships, STI prevention and awareness, unwanted pregnancy prevention, and more. By being a public health program coordinator or manager, you can work for a (sexy) cause that you care about.

4. Health App Developer

There is a rapidly increasing need for people who can use technology to address public health issues and create mobile health applications. Technology can improve the efficiency of health information collection delivery, which increases our understanding of health problems, and gives people access to information to help them make healthier choices. Even the FDA is onboard with technology. Coders, developers, engineers, designers, and project managers for health tech and mHealth projects are all high-demand jobs, and working in health tech is a super sexy way to contribute to the field of public health.

5. Peer Health Education Leader

Like working with teens? One way to get health information to youth is by working directly with youth. If you are interested in reaching adolescents, you can contribute your knowledge and expertise by training and leading a peer health education group. Many schools, health centers, and other organizations have peer health educators that do community outreach and one-to-one education.

6. Medical Professional

All sorts of medical professions work in sexuality and health, including Ob/Gyns, nurses, doctors, and more. While many of these jobs require specialized training, you will be in a key position of service delivery and information sharing. More and more, medical professionals are also using mobile applications (a.k.a. mHealth) and technology to enhance their work and increase efficiency, making their jobs all the more sexy. If you want to learn how to incorporate a sexual health focus into your medical career, the Association for Reproductive Health Professionals is a great place to start.

7. Disease Intervention Specialist

Disease Intervention Specialists (DIS) are public health professionals that contact people that have tested positive for a sexually transmitted infection, counsel them, and contact their partners to notify them of potential exposure. DIS have really critical roles within public health, and they even have a national holiday, National DIS day! For more information about DIS work, check out this article on RH Reality Check.

8. Sex Therapist

A sex therapist is often (although not always) a licensed mental health professional that specializes in issues around sexuality, for either individuals, couples, or both. Sex therapists help clients with a wide range of concerns, such as sexual health issues, sexual dysfunction, or relationship dynamics. For information, check out this great overview of the various types of “sex helping professions.” Want to pursue a career in sex therapy or counseling? Learn how at the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists (which plans to restart its mentorship program).

9. Researcher

sex researcher Virginia Johnson Lizzy CaplanDo you believe the world needs better evidence and data about sexual and reproductive health, sexual practices, sexual identity and orientation, and more? You’re not alone! In fact, through the Journal of Sex Research, experts around the world share research on correct condom use, on sexual practices in couples who have sexually transmitted infections, and even on love. To explore research careers, visit the Society for Scientific Study of Sexuality and its mentoring program).

These are just some of the sexy public health jobs and careers out there. Plenty of people have found jobs that combine components from multiple jobs or created a job for themselves that is completely unique.

What do you think is the sexiest job in public health? Tweet it to me at @askjennatalia.

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