Occupational & Environmental Health Nursing


Every year nearly 56,000 U.S. workers die due to a workplace injury or work-related illness; more than three million suffer disabling, work-related injuries. UCSF Nursing students in the MS program may select the Occupational and Environmental Health Nursing specialty area. OEH faculty members also work with students seeking the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree.

OEH Nursing MS Specialty Area Choices

• Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner - Occupational and
Environmental Health Focus (AGNP-OEH)

• Occupational and Environmental Health Specialists (OEHS)

Occupational and Environmental Health Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioners (AGNP-OEH) focus on direct patient care, the theory and practice of adult health maintenance, and the assessment and management of common ailments facing working adults, including occupational injuries and illnesses. Graduates are eligible for state and national board certification. Detailed information about certification is available on the AGNP web page.

Occupational and Environmental Health Specialists focus on programs to prevent occupational illnesses and injuries, to manage disability, and to provide consultation with employers, employees and others as well as worker education and training. This role preparation provides a streamlined MS program for those who seek specialization in occupational and environmental health nursing without a direct patient care component.

Career Opportunities

OEHN graduates develop careers in a variety of settings including on-site employee health clinics in various industries, hospital-based primary care or specialty clinics, occupational health service or consulting companies, government agencies, academia, and communities.


All OEHN students take courses that explore research in occupational health, hazard assessment, program planning, OEHN roles, and management of occupational health problems. Clinical residencies in specialty clinics and occupational health settings provide a range of experience with experts in the field. Students also complete program development projects at businesses, medical centers, community based organizations, or government organizations. Topics for these projects have included worker education and training, ergonomics, protection from toxic hazards, medical surveillance systems, regulatory compliance systems, emergency response teams, and international travel and disease prevention.

OEHN curriculum details are provided below:

Most students finish the program in two academic years (AGNP-OEH) or one calendar year (OEH Nurse Specialist) and complete a written comprehensive exam (or, in some instances, a thesis). Students may apply to extend their program over three years.

Other Application/Degree Options

Applicants who have a bachelor's degree in a field other than nursing (and who are not registered nurses) may be interested in our three-year Master's Entry Program in Nursing (MEPN). MEPN students who are interested in the OEHN specialty can enter the OEHN MS program in their second UCSF year, with the approval of the OEHN program. Please consult the MEPN program web page for more details about this option.

Additionally, MS students may apply to the UC Berkeley School of Public Health (http://sph.berkeley.edu) for a Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) degree. This one-year program, designed for health professionals, consists of 42-units of academic credit some of which may be transferred from UCSF to UC Berkeley for elective credits.

Doctoral Program

The PhD Program in Occupational and Environmental Health focuses on theory development, design and methodology of research, and the specialized knowledge of occupational or environmental health. Each candidate’s curriculum is tailored to their individual career goals and past experience in occupational and environmental health. For more information about the doctoral program at UCSF School of Nursing, please refer to the following web page:http://nursing.ucsf.edu/programs/phd-nursing.

UC Center for Occupational & Environmental Health (COEH)

This program is a component of UC's Northern California Center for Occupational and Environmental Health (COEH), a multi-campus Educational Research Center funded by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), which has offered training stipends to OEHN students for more than twenty-five years. The COEH affiliation offers students the opportunity for interdisciplinary training in occupational health with occupational medicine fellows and students in industrial hygiene, epidemiology, and ergonomics.



UCSF Nursing Student Affairs Office
2 Koret Way, Room N-319X
University of California, Box 0602
San Francisco, CA 94143-0602

Email:   info@nursing.ucsf.edu
Telephone:   (415) 476-1435
Fax:   (415) 476-9707