Boston College Launches Employer-Aligned, Ethics-Focused MHA

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New online program designed to advance leaders, enhance healthcare.

Boston College

The emphasis on ethics and values, consistent with the Jesuit educational principle of using knowledge for the betterment of society, is a key differentiating factor in the BC MHA. Our program stresses a patient-centered perspective.

To address the growing demand for high caliber, ethical leadership for the increasingly complex healthcare industry, Boston College is launching a Master of Healthcare Administration program through its Woods College of Advancing Studies. The online degree program will provide an employer-aligned curriculum grounded in ethics and values.

"The emphasis on ethics and values, consistent with the Jesuit educational principle of using knowledge for the betterment of society, is a key differentiating factor in the BC MHA. Our program stresses a patient-centered perspective," said Woods College Dean James P. Burns, I.V.D. "By graduating highly-qualified, morally responsible, dedicated healthcare professionals from this program, we hope to improve how individuals are treated within the healthcare system.”

The launch of the Boston College MHA program coincides with a growing demand for healthcare leaders in this rapidly evolving field. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs for medical and health services administrators and managers are projected to grow 17 percent from 2014 to 2024.

Critical input from a broad range of healthcare leaders enables the BC MHA program to be specifically aligned with industry needs. The program is competency-based, allowing students to leverage what they have already learned on the job and focus on the skills and knowledge they need to advance their career.

"Prospective employers will be able to see that the MHA graduates have hit every one of the competencies expected of them,” Fr. Burns said. “Our graduates will be prepared to take on a position in management or executive leadership."

The program—which can typically be completed in two years, with the potential to finish in one—is highly personalized and blends real-time, faculty-led sessions with self-paced learning elements to ensure maximum flexibility. Twelve courses are offered in 6- to 8-week formats with multiple enrollment points throughout the year, and students will have a dedicated executive coach to guide them through the curriculum. In addition, the program draws on resources from BC's Connell School of Nursing, Carroll School of Management, and Institute for Advanced Jesuit Studies.

In addition, graduates will have access to career-enhancing opportunities through program and Boston College connections to medical facilities, governmental and non-profit agencies, and mental healthcare organizations, and as part of the University's network of more than 178,000 alumni.

“Linkages with employers are critically important to help ensure the marketability of our graduates,” said program director Stephen M. Bowman, Ph.D., MHA. “Those connections and partnerships provide a level of student support that goes beyond delivering content. Input from leading healthcare organizations will continue to influence the BC MHA curriculum, competencies, and course projects.”

"There's clearly a critical need for a top-notch program in the Boston-area that can meet both employer demand and employer-determined competencies," said Fr. Burns. "This is exactly what this program does; we created it with those needs in mind."

Enrollment is now open for the first session, which begins next month. For more information about the BC MHA, visit the program website at onlineMHA.bc.edu.

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Sean Hennessy
Boston College
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