Our enthusiasm for health and wellness for all is contagious.  Catch it!

Health and Wellness Brochure


When you have the drive to help people and communities live in better health and well-being, it can lead to many rewarding careers. You can help them overcome the effects of illness, disease, disability and injury. Encourage informed, healthy choices about diet and fitness. Shape health policy decisions that affect millions. Keep pets happy and healthy.

Any one of these career paths impacting quality of life starts at Oregon State University. Our programs in science, public health and human sciences, nutrition, pre-health areas, pre-pharmacy, pre–veterinary medicine and kinesiology will prepare you to step into a career, go on to graduate school or enter a program in one of the health professions. In addition, with a growing population and longer lifespans, the skills you develop at Oregon State will always be in demand.

You can make a life around making lives better. Starting with your own.


Get ready for what’s next.

To prepare for study in health and wellness, you should have a strong academic background with an emphasis on mathematics and the sciences, especially laboratory sciences. Because you will need good communication skills to relate with people — especially those who are concerned about their health and well-being — you should also have a well-balanced background in the social sciences and humanities. And, as with most fields today, it’s important to have solid computer skills. If you have questions about preparing for university-level study in these fields while you are in high school, contact the advising staff in the program you’re considering.

Build a career of caring.

College is often just the first step on a career path. Traditional health professions such as medicine, dentistry, nursing, pharmacy and veterinary
medicine all provide rewarding careers, but there are also growing opportunities in public health, athletics, nutrition and the assisted-living industry.
Many of these careers require further education in graduate, professional or medical school.

You can choose multiple career paths, both in the U.S. and abroad. Depending on your interests, you might work with young children, teenagers, adults
or senior citizens — or you may select a career that involves working with people across the lifespan.

With a focus on health and wellness studies, you could be:

  • A primary care physician, a surgeon or a medical specialist.
  • A dietitian or nutritionist, helping people avoid or overcome illness, obesity or poor eating habits. 
  • An athletic trainer, aiding in the prevention, treatment and rehabilitation of sports injuries.
  • A leader in organizing, directing and managing fitness and wellness programs in a corporate, commercial or clinical setting.
  • A physical or occupational therapist, helping people overcome the effects of injury or disability.
  • A health policy expert leading reforms in health services.
  • An administrator in a hospital, long-term care facility or other health services organization.
  • A health educator, focusing on risk reduction and disease prevention among diverse populations.
  • A pharmacist, working with physicians and other members of a patient’s health care team. 
  • A veterinarian, taking care of pets and farm animals or ensuring a safe food supply.

Your First Year

Off we go. Getting started at Oregon State.

Health professionals have multidimensional jobs, and a well-rounded education is an important foundation for a successful career. You’ll spend your first year developing your critical-thinking, communication and problem-solving skills through courses from Oregon State’s Baccalaureate Core — the physical and biological sciences, arts and humanities, mathematics, writing, fitness, cultural diversity and freshman orientation — along with some beginning courses in your major.

Get off to a good start and stay on course for graduation, by meeting with an advisor as you plan your first-year program — and at regular intervals after that.

Internships give your career a head start.

The on-the-job experience provided by internships is required in some programs and encouraged in most others. Increasingly, graduate and professional schools in health areas prefer students who have experience working or volunteering in the field. 

Oregon State offers preceptorships in public health and pre-medicine programs. You can spend time with a working professional — observing
patient care, community health, office procedures and other aspects of your preceptor’s career.

Your professors, department and college, as well as The Oregon State Career Development Center, can help you apply for an internship. Depending
on your internship, you can choose to take a term or two off from classes, take classes while completing your internship or do one over the summer.

Health and Wellness

We offer 200+ degree programs.  Find where you fit.

The following colleges offer programs in this area:

College of Agricultural Sciences

Animal Sciences

  • Animal Behavior
  • Animal BioHealth/Pre-Vet

Bioresource Research

  • Animal Reproduction and Development
  • Applied Genetics
  • Bioenergy
  • Bioproducts
  • Biotechnology
  • Climate and Biosystems Modeling
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Food Quality
  • Genomics/Bioinformatics
  • Pest Biology and Management
  • Plant Growth and Development
  • Sustainable Ecosystems
  • Toxicology
  • Water Resources

Food Science and Technology

  • Enology and Viticulture
  • Fermentation Science
  • Food Science

College of Engineering


Radiation Health Physics

  • Pre-Medicine

College of Public Health and Human Sciences

Human Development and Family Sciences

  • Child Development
  • Human Services
  • Pre-Medicine
  • Pre-Nursing


  • Pre-Therapy and Allied Health
  • Pre-Medicine
  • Pre-Nursing


  • Dietetics
  • Nutrition and Food Service Systems
  • Nutrition and Health Sciences
  • Pre-Medicine
  • Pre-Nursing

Public Health

  • Health Management and Policy
  • Health Promotion and Health Behavior
  • Pre-Medicine
  • Pre-Nursing

College of Science

Biochemistry and Biophysics

Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

  • Advanced Molecular Biology
  • Computational Molecular Biology
  • Pre-Medicine


  • Ecology
  • Genetics
  • Marine Biology
  • Physiology and Behavior
  • Pre-Dentistry
  • Pre-Education Biology
  • Pre-Medicine
  • Pre-Veterinary Medicine


  • Advanced Biochemistry
  • Advanced Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Business
  • Chemistry Education
  • Chemical Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Forensic Science
  • Materials Science
  • Pre-Medicine

BioHealth Sciences

  • Pre-Clinical Laboratory Science
  • Pre-Dentistry
  • Pre-Medicine
  • Pre-Optometry
  • Pre-Pharmacy
  • Pre-Physical Therapy
  • Pre-Physician Assistant
  • Pre-Podiatry


  • Aquatic Microbiology
  • Pre-Medicine


Professional Programs

College of Pharmacy (Pharm. D.)

College of Veterinary Medicine (DVM)

Multiple scholarships are available. Be sure to apply.

Get some help paying for college with a variety of university scholarships, as well as those from individual colleges and departments. Most scholarships are awarded based on information in the Oregon State scholarship application submitted with your application for admission, but others require separate applications. The deadline for applying for university scholarships is Feb. 1. Be sure to check with your college and department on the deadlines for other scholarships.

Put yourself out there. 

Oregon State offers a resource-rich environment that encourages you to combine your studies in health and wellness with opportunities like the Honors College and study abroad programs. You’ll find challenging, unique experiences that support your academic, professional and personal growth — and have fun, too.

Research lets you discover and solve.

Like internships, research experience can give you an advantage when applying to graduate and professional programs. In most health areas, you’ll have opportunities to make real contributions to faculty and graduate students’ research projects. You may also develop and pursue your own research addressing local, national and international health concerns.