Individuals aspiring to become healthcare managers will find that work experience is beneficial prior to an MBA in Healthcare Management. While earning the graduate degree in healthcare management is vital, students will find that having job experience is every bit as important. In fact, most schools require it as part of the program requirements. What type of work or job experience the student should have is often a concern to healthcare management graduate students. Here are some ideas that may be helpful.
Related Resources: Top 20 MBA in Healthcare Management Online Programs 2018
Types of Experience
Students in an MBA in Healthcare Management must have work experience prior to earning the degree. What many don't realize is that it doesn't necessarily have to be in healthcare management. It can be in human resources, information technology, accounting, business or a similar field. While most of these jobs may not focus on healthcare administration, they give the student experience in a business setting.
Many students obtain job experience while they're still earning their bachelor's degree. They may be working part-time to earn additional income while in school, but they're also gaining experience that they'll need prior to starting the MBA program. Some don't even realize how beneficial this job experience is going to be once they get to the MBA program.
Ways to Get Experience in Healthcare Administration
When you're thinking of getting experience in healthcare management, you typically think of working directly in that setting. However, there are others ways the student can obtain the necessary experience. Here are a few ways students can gain some much-needed experience.
- Know your area of specialty – Even though you're pursuing healthcare administration, there may be certain areas you wish to pursue. Once that's been determined, you can look for part-time jobs in those types of businesses.
- Search different healthcare facilities – You may be pursuing healthcare management, but working in other healthcare facilities is great job experience.
- Internships – Complete as many internships as you possibly can from the first day you begin school.
- Request experience – It can't hurt to contact healthcare facilities and tell them you want experience and ask if they have any opportunities for you.
What About Online Students?
One of the main benefits of attending school online is that students can earn a degree through distance learning and attend classes at their own pace. While classes are a large part of the MBA healthcare management program, job experience is still extremely important. On-campus students often get assistance through internships.
Online students will still have to obtain some experience in this area but may have to do it on their own rather than as part of the program or through the school. Students who are pursuing a terminal degree in healthcare management may be required to have from two to three years of job experience whether they're online or on-campus students.
Career Outlook for Healthcare Management
Medical and health services managers are expected to see a job growth of 20 percent during the decade of 2016-2026 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. As of May 2017, healthcare managers earned a median annual wage of $98,350. Graduates of the healthcare management MBA program who typically have the most success are those who not only have completed the program but also those with the most work or job experience in the area of healthcare, management or both.
Healthcare management is a field that requires study, experience and the commitment to helping patients, their families, and the healthcare facility's workforce. Students are often amazed at how beneficial the work experience is not just in earning the MBA in Healthcare Management but also while seeking employment in the field.