Executive MHSA Program of Study

The two-year executive master's in health systems administration is competency-based, multidisciplinary and accredited by CAHME. The curriculum is customized for the specific needs of mid-career professionals, the unique perspectives of the accomplished practitioners who serve as EMHSA faculty, and the executive format of delivery.

Faculty experience and insights are incorporated to focus on preparing students to conceive and lead creative, informed solutions to current and emerging health care challenges. In accordance with Jesuit values, the curriculum takes a holistic, analytical, and reflective approach, and includes experiential learning opportunities.

Curriculum Shaped By Faculty of Accomplished Practitioners

Our faculty and guest speakers bring both academic credentials and industry experience in key leadership positions in health care. As a result, students are exposed to the perspectives of leaders from a broad range of organizations such as the US Department of Veterans Affairs, Good Samaritan Hospital, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, BlueCross Blue Shield, Glaxo-Smith Klein, Deloitte, Booz Allen Hamilton, the Senate Budget Committee, Porter-Novelli, and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Program of Study

The following diagram reflects the executive MHSA course sequence and experiential learning opportunities. Course descriptions are available on the Registrar’s web site. Courses and sequencing are subject to change.

Competency-Based Curriculum

MHSA graduates will be expected to demonstrate proficiency in six core competency domains: 

Performance Management & Quality Improvement
Policy, Strategy & System Models
Leadership & Ethics
Management Skills & Tools
Knowledge Management, Analysis & Critical Thinking
Financial Acumen and Management

Curricular Philosophy

The Importance of Health Systems Administration

We believe that leaders in the health care industry address the most complex and most consequential concerns in our society. Virtually every decision and action has implications for the quality of health care, the cost of care, and access to appropriate care.

The health care sector is unlike any other in terms of mission, structure and organization, encompassing the fields of medicine, public health, public policy and ethics while requiring the application of management competencies such as law, finance, marketing, human resources, and strategic planning.

We believe that health systems administration is a distinct profession, with a 75-year history, and a distinct body of knowledge, code of ethics, and identity.  We believe that the profession of health systems administration is a calling for individuals who are committed to public service, have clear and strong values, and are driven by the value of making a positive contribution to the public good.

Our graduates will join a community of alumni who are recognized for their competence, values, and knowledge in the field of health services delivery, financing, policy, and supporting services.

Our Beliefs Inform Our Curriculum

We believe that professional education for health systems administration executives should encompass both the competencies and tools of leadership and management and the social and technical contexts in which executives will apply these competencies and tools. Because leaders in health systems administration must bring specialized knowledge, skills, and values to their organizations, our curriculum is highly practice-based.

Our program of study has strong management content, but is distinguished from the MBA, which includes few health care specific courses, and from the MPH, which broadly covers those factors that influence population health with emphasis upon medical care and applied management skills. The executive master's in health systems administration track is designed for mid-career professionals.

Our Values Inform Our Curriculum

To accomplish our mission and vision, the EMHSA curriculum is guided by the following values:

  • Students

We value our students as individuals and the diverse experiences and perspectives they bring to the program.

  • Patients

We value the patients for whom our students will ensure provision of the care they need in a safe and caring environment. 

  • Academic Excellence

We value knowledge, understanding, the integration of theory and practice, and finding better ways to challenge our students to be active learners to advance their skills and experience. 

  • Research

We value exploration and inquiry both for illumination and to improve policies, programs, and institutions. 

  • Critical Thinking

We value “contemplation in action” as an approach to finding solutions to complex problems. 

  • Communication

We value clear and concise articulation, prose, and the ability to use information to effect change. 

  • Social Responsibility

We value individual and societal responsibility and accountability. 

  • Professionalism

We value professionalism in health services administration practice, including a commitment to a code of personal and organizational ethics, integrity, and career-long growth.

  • Teaching Excellence

We value effective and innovative approaches to individuals’ learning.