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Is It Worth Getting a Master’s in Healthcare Administration? 

Theresa Schempp
By Theresa Schempp

The healthcare industry is a large sector that offers a variety of career opportunities. The demand for healthcare professionals isn’t limited to the need for more nurses and doctors. Administrative professionals are also in demand as the healthcare sector continues to expand, with the industry having an expected average growth rate of more than 28 percent during the next ten years and a median annual salary of $101,340.1 A master’s in healthcare administration (MHA) can prepare you to build a career in this fast-growing industry.

“Individuals that are seeking to grow professionally within the healthcare field could significantly benefit from this degree, allowing for a variety of healthcare administration roles to be available to them once they complete their MHA,” says Christina Gardiner, Ph.D, collegiate faculty in global health management and administration at University of Maryland Global Campus (UMGC). “Pursuing an MHA degree from UMGC is valuable because our program supports students in learning about current managerial, leadership, and administrative duties that address the entire healthcare ecosystem from a national level to a global perspective.”

What do students learn in an MHA program that prepares them for healthcare management positions?

A master’s degree can help prepare students for senior-level positions throughout the industry, enabling students and professionals to achieve their career goals. At UMGC, the MHA program equips students with an enhanced understanding of the healthcare delivery system from operations to finance, while furthering their development in areas such as strategic thinking, innovation, problem-solving, and meaningful leadership. 

“Students enrolled in the UMGC MHA program learn a wide array of skills, from managing an entire healthcare facility or healthcare system to operating a department within a specific healthcare setting,” says Gardiner. “Some of the healthcare administration topics that are taught in our program include finance, emergency management, public health, quality management, policy development, staffing, regulations, physical plant operations, healthcare marketing, leadership, and so much more!” 

What kind of jobs are possible with an MHA?

The experience students gain with an MHA degree can apply to a range of jobs. An MHA can help students gain the skills to transition into a leadership or management role, and those career opportunities are available in almost every sector of healthcare.

“The job possibilities with an MHA are extensive, just like the entire United States healthcare delivery system. A student’s interest and time spent within this industry can help determine the type of jobs or career path they can seek,” says Gardiner. “For example, a student that has only been working in the healthcare industry a few years could seek roles like a practice administrator, director of operations, healthcare consultant, regional manager, or healthcare project manager. If a student has been in the healthcare industry longer and is seeking their MHA to further their career, other roles that could be available include Chief Executive Officer, Chief Operating Office, Chief Financial Officer, Vice President, hospital executive, or similar higher level executive roles.”

How does UMGC’s MHA program differ from other programs to help students succeed? 

“The UMGC MHA model is different because we provide students with a solid foundation in healthcare administration that translates to the current healthcare marketplace,” says Gardiner. “As an educational leader within the healthcare industry, our program focuses on giving students the knowledge, skills, and abilities to make an impactful positive impression in the highly complex healthcare environment.” 

UMGC’s MHA professors are industry professionals who have worked or currently work within the healthcare field. UMGC professors translate the course content into meaningful skillsets that support professional growth, allowing students to develop their skills to achieve their long-term career goals. The UMGC MHA program has been designed to support working adults, and the curriculum allows for flexibility by applying an online format that supports today’s working professionals. UMGC recognizes the demands of working in the healthcare industry and works to provide students with the ability to continue in their professional roles while pursuing their academic goals of an MHA. 

“If you are a healthcare professional that wants to have a competitive edge in the marketplace, then pursuing your MHA could be the best option for you,” says Gardiner. “This career path, coupled with an MHA degree, is considered a highly sought-after profession that has a world of endless possibilities, allowing those that seek this opportunity to make a difference as a healthcare leader.” 

UMGC is a constituent institution of the University System of Maryland and has an accreditation from the Middle States Commission of Higher Education. In addition to the MHA program, UMGC also offers a bachelor’s degree in health services management as well as a variety of undergraduate and graduate certificates within the field of healthcare. Advancing your education in healthcare can help you gain the professional development to maximize your potential in this era of rapid healthcare transformation.

1Medical and Health Services Managers: Occupational Outlook Handbook.” U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, October 25, 2022.  

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