Commissioned Corps of the U.S. Public Health Service

Environmental Health Officer Professional Advisory Committee

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Resources for Awards and RecognitionReturn to top of page

Awards Overview Packet

The purpose of the U.S. Public Health Service Environmental Health Officer Awards Overview packet is to provide our Officers with a beneficial “go-to” document for awards information. The EHOPAC Awards and Recognition Subcommittee takes great pride in recognizing those Officers who excel in various aspects of their work-life. This packet was designed to assist Officers by explaining the importance of awards and offering tips, suggestions, formatting, examples of previously well-written awards, as well as additional resources.

NEW The Environmental Health Officer Awards Overview (PDF: 2 MB)

Resources for Career DevelopmentReturn to top of page

EHO Promotion Benchmarks

Promotion Year 2022 Benchmarks for All Categories

2021 Benchmark 2 Supplemental Guidance (PDF: 259KB, 6 pages)

    Promotion Year 2021 Benchmarks

Promotion year 2020 Benchmarks (PDF: 413KB, 11 pages) 
Promotion Year 2019 Benchmarks (PDF: 414KB) 
Promotion Year 2018 Benchmarks (PDF: 298KB) 
Promotion Year 2017 Benchmarks (PDF: 322KB) 
Promotion Year 2016 Benchmarks (PDF: 108KB) 

Current CV, CV Cover Sheet, and Continuing Education Summary Templates

Promotion - CV Cover Sheet Supplemental Guidance Updated June 2020 

Promotion - CV Cover Sheet Template Updated June 2020

Promotion - Curriculum Vitae Template Updated June 2020

Continuing Education Summary Sheet Example Updated June 2020

Officer Statement/Reviewing Official Statement

Please visit the CC Promotion Website for the latest versions of these forms.This link goes to an external site

Officer's Statement Example 2022

Reviewing Official's Statement Example 2022

Career Progression Milestones

Career Progression Milestones Updated August, 2021 (PDF 143KB, 1 page) - This document provides EHOs a snapshot of milestones an officer should strive to achieve throughout a career.

Resources for CommunicationsReturn to top of page

Guidance for posting to the EHOPAC Listserv   

PHS Style Guide

This is the final guidance for posting to the EHOPAC Listserv. This guidance defines what information is appropriate for dissemination via the EHOPAC Listserv in an effort to provide consistent and reliable communication. The guidance also contains what uses are not appropriate. 

The implementation date for this document is 11/06/2017.


EHOPAC Listserv Guidance V 2.1 Updated August, 2019 (PDF: 159 KB, 3 pages)

Guidance for posting to the EHOPAC Listserv

The PHS Style Guide with guidance on proper usage of branded materials and Public Health Service affiliation can be found in the Officer Secure Area, in the CommunicationTools, and Resources Tab, third from the bottom.

Areas of guidance include:

    • Clearance Procedures
    • Copy Reference and Use of Our Name
    • Email Signatures and Business Card Guidelines
    • Presentations
    • Service Motto
    • Social Media

Under "Social Media", the piece that seems to be most important is referencing and using of our name in comunication materials. For quick reference, here it is:

    • First Reference, use the Full name: Commissioned Corps of the U.S. Public Health Service and/or U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps
    • Second and subsequent reference: USPHS Commissioned Corps
    • Name of officers: Public Health Service Officers

Resources for HistoryReturn to top of page

Visit our 'History of the EHO' page for a timeline of the history of the Environmental Health Officer category.

Resources for LeadershipReturn to top of page

Please visit our Leadership Resource Site for Leadership specific books, articles, and media.

Commissioned Corps Overview & Resources for Supervisors and Reviewing Officials

This document is a helpful tool for familiarizing your civil service supervisors and reviewing officials with Commissioned Corps history and administrative requirements and systems.

Commissioned Corps Overview & Resources for Supervisors and Reviewing Officials - (PDF, 807K, 43 pages) 

Resources for Marketing and RecruitmentReturn to top of page

EHOPAC Recruit an EHO (RAE) Program

The new RAE program includes the Adopt-a-School program and also the Event Recruitment program. The purpose of this program is to support the recruitment of qualified candidates for appointment as Environmental Health Officers (EHOs) into the USPHS Commissioned Corps. The Adopt-a-School program enables officers to recruit students enrolled in colleges and universities with accredited academic programs that qualify individuals for appointment into the EHO category. The Event Recruitment program enables officers to recruit professionals and students involved or attending environmental and occupational health and related organizations and associations who qualify for the EHO category. Please see the following documents for more information on RAE:

RAE Policy document - PDF File

RAE Enrollment Form - Word File

Adopt-A-School Officer List - Updated November, 2017 - (PDF: 122KB, 2 pages)

Please contact LT Kathryn Pink at Kathryn.Pink@ihs.gov  for questions on the Event Recruitment program.

Please contact LCDR Dustin Joplin at dustin.joplin@ihs.gov for questions on the Adopt-a-School program.

Recruitment Brochures and Handouts

Resources for Boarded and Active Duty Officers


USAJOBS Introduction for Newly Boarded EHOsThis link goes to an external site - (PDF: 1.02 MB - 49 pages) 

Resources for Recruiting

Benefits of Hiring a COSTEP Brochure - Updated March, 2021 (PDF: 534 KB, 2 pages)

The Environmental Health Officer Fact Sheet (PDF: 505 KB) 

EHOPAC Recruitment Presentation - 2021Presentation Coming Soon

Cruise Ship Inspectors Work Hard So You Can Play Hard

Imagine a job where you get to travel to beautiful locations and spend time on cruise ships. Sounds amazing, doesn't it? But what if your job were to climb up and down ladders and into tiny spaces all over the ship, checking food, water, and sanitation facilities? That doesn't sound quite as glamorous. Read about Cruise Ship Inspectors on the JobThis link goes to an external site to learn more (PDF: 110 Kb, 3 pages).

The JrCOSTEP Program

Each year, the Environmental Health Officer (EHO) Category hires approximately 25-35 students for summer Junior Commissioned Officer Student Training and Extern Program (JRCOSTEP) positions. Most positions are with the Indian Health Service (IHS) in many different areas of the United States, including Alaska. Other agencies that typically hire one or two JRCOSTEPs per summer are: ATSDR, CDC, Coast Guard, and the National Park Service. The EHO category typically has 70-100 applicants for these positions; therefore, all positions are competitive. Most are undergraduate level, but there are several graduate students placed each year.

Resources for Students Interested in the JrCOSTEP Program

COSTEP Application Timeline - An application timeline for prospective USPHS JRCOSTEP applicants. - Updated March, 2021 - (PDF: 200 KB, 1page)

Valuable Tips for the Environmental Health Officer (EHO) Junior Commissioned Officer Student Training and Extern Program (JRCOSTEP) - Updated March 2021 - (PDF: 158 KB, 3 pages)

2017 JRCOSTEP Student Narratives

During the summer of 2017, 19 students from multiple colleges and universities participated in the Junior Commissioned Officer Student Training and Extern Program (JRCOSTEP). Of this group, 16 were assigned to the Indian Health Service (IHS), 1 to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and 2 to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention/National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (CDC/NIOSH).

Narratives from the students assigned to the IHS can be found here: IHS COSTEP Narratives.

Narratives from students assigned to other Agencies:

ENS Alexandra Shishkova - University of Texas, Houston (PDF: 358 KB, 2 pages) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health - Anchorage, Alaska

ENS Andrew Torrico - California State University, Northridge (PDF: 147 KB, 2 pages) U.S. Food and Drug Administration - Silver Spring, Maryland 

If you are interested in the JRCOSTEP program please visit the Student Opportunities section of the United States Public Health Service website.

2019 Version

COSTEP Preceptor Guide

The Environmental Health Officer Professional Advisory Committee (EHOPAC) Mentoring & Orientation Subcommittee developed this guide to help prospective JRCOSTEP preceptors create a successful COSTEP experience.

This guide was written by a group of officers that have served as preceptors for COSTEPS. While each COSTEP experience will be different, this guide provides checklists and examples that can be used to help ensure that each COSTEP has an opportunity for a quality experience which could lead to a rewarding and productive career in USPHS. More information is available in the 2021 JRCOSTEP Preceptor Guide - Updated April 2021 - (PDF: 1.2 MB, 23 pages).

Resources for Mentoring and OrientationReturn to top of page

Welcome New and Junior EHOs

The EHOPAC strives to provide new and junior EHOs with guidance on career opportunities, EHO placement in multiple agencies as well as officer benefits and entitlements. Please take some time to review our new EHO Welcome Packet to see what opportunities await you.

EHOPAC Welcome Packet (PDF: 339 KB, 23 pages)

Online Signup for the Mentoring Program

New mentor and protégé applicants can now apply online at the link below. Simply create a new profile and be sure to select the EHO category when creating a profile. Also be sure to specify whether you are applying to be a mentor or a mentee. Once you are paired up, you will be notified via email by someone on the M & O subcommittee. If you PCS please remember to update your profile.

Mentor Topical Guideline

This guideline provides a list of topics that should be reviewed during the mentoring process. A detailed review of each topic may not be necessary depending on the Protégé's training and experience, e.g. completion of the Officer's Basic Course and/or mentorship by their supervisor. Click to view the Mentoring Topic Discussion GuidelineThis link goes to an external site (PDF: 28 KB, 3 pages).

Mentoring Brochure

The Mentoring and Orientation Program pairs experienced staff with recently-appointed staff to facilitate the transition into the US Public Health Service as an environmental health professional. Some of the topics in the program include:

  • Agencies and opportunities in the PHS
  • Awards
  • Billets and mobility
  • Career progression
  • Deployment readiness
  • Leave, pay and benefits
  • Maintaining your personnel file
  • Performance reviews
  • Promotions
  • Planning for retirement

Mentoring BrochureThis link goes to an external site (PDF: 380 KB, 2 pages).

Resources for Policies and StandardsReturn to top of page

Current EHO Appointment Standards

Commissioned Corps Headquarters promulgated updates to Category Specific Appointment Standards, Commissioned Corps Instruction 231.03 on 25 June 2021. The full instruction may be accessed at https://dcp.psc.gov/ccmis/ccis/documents/CCI_231.03.pdf (PDF, 16 pages). EHO appointment standards are listed at 6-6.

A candidate must possess one of the following qualifying degrees or a degree and professional certification:

  • A bachelor’s or master’s degree in environmental health accredited by the National Environmental Health Science and Protection Accreditation Council (EHAC); see https://www.nehspac.org/
  • A bachelor’s or master’s degree from a program accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) in environmental health, occupational health and safety, industrial hygiene, or health physics; see https://www.abet.org/
  • A master’s degree or doctoral degree with a specialization or concentration in environmental health, occupational health and safety, or industrial hygiene from a school of public health or public health program accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH); see https://ceph.org/.
    • Candidates with such a degree must also possess a current certification as a Registered Environmental Health Specialist/Registered Sanitarian (REHS/RS) or REHS/RS-In Training by the National Environmental Health Association (NEHA); see https://www.neha.org/.
    • A state issued RS or REHS is acceptable if the credential is eligible for reciprocity from NEHA; see https://www.neha.org/professional-development/credentials/reciprocity.
    • Candidate must provide confirmation indicating the CEPH accredited degree met the school’s requirements for a specialization or concentration in environmental health, occupational health and safety, or industrial hygiene on an official transcript. If this information is not on the official transcript, confirmation must be made on school letterhead and signed by the director or chair of the degree program. The confirmation shall state the candidate graduated from a CEPH-accredited program having a concentration or specialization in environmental health, occupational health and safety, or industrial hygiene.

Please contact the chairperson with questions or comments of this section – LCDR Doug Erling

Resources for ReadinessReturn to top of page

Readiness Presentations - Coming Soon!

  • Indoor Air Quality
  • Safety Officer in a Pandemic Deployment Skills
  • Safe Water Essentials
  • Operational and Deployment Risk Management
  • Public Health Recovery for EHO's
  • Radiation Incident Response for EHO Responders

Please visit our "Readiness Resource" Site for readiness specific information, guides, and resources.

Resources for TrainingReturn to top of page

Please visit our 'Continuing Education' page for upcomming training opportunities.

Guidance on Transferability of Post 9/11 GI Education Benefits - Please reference the following documents for guidance on transferring Post 9/11 GI Educational Benefits

Page Last Modified on 11/5/2021

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