GV’s healthcare management degree ranked among top in midwest

Shae Slaughter

Headline: GV’s healthcare management degree ranked among top in midwest


By: Shae Slaughter

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In addition to their undergraduate programs, Grand Valley State University offers a variety of graduate degree programs and is home to over 3,000 graduate students who make up about 12.8 percent of the school’s total population.

The graduate students that call GVSU home have the option to be enrolled in one of 36 graduate programs available. In September, attention was called to GVSU’s healthcare management degree programs, receiving a no. 4 ranking in the Midwest according to the healthcare management degree guide on www.healthcare-management-degree.net

“The Graduate School (TGS) provides intensive support to all of our current 3,251 graduate students, including approximately 1,300 graduate students in a health-related program,” said Jennifer Palm, assistant to TGS. “There are extensive resources for completing a thesis or dissertation as well as promotion of events, opportunities, and relevant news to the graduate student population.”

The healthcare management degree guide website specifically points some of the credit not only to programs like TGS, but to the Seidman College of Business and the degree of a masters of business administration (MBA). GVSU’s healthcare programs tend to standout for a variety of reasons, one of which is the prime location of the campus near the Medical Mile and the university’s close ties with a variety of medical organizations. 

“MBA’s will sometimes have specializations in healthcare depending on their location. So for us we have an executive MBA or an EMBA,” said Diana Lawson dean of the Seidman College of Business.

At GVSU, the EMBA was created by the Seidman College of Business in partnership with Spectrum Health to better train their employees. 

“(The program) is for business professionals who have been out in the business world for 5-10 years and have had significant experience,” Lawson said.

As part of the Strategic Plan for GVSU and TGS, the university regularly seeks partnerships with Spectrum Health, Metro Health, Mercy Health and many other community health organizations in Grand Rapids. This collaboration with real world companies is also part of what makes GVSU programs notable. Representatives often come in from Spectrum Health to speak to classes and to give real world knowledge. 

“That adds a very strong applied perspective so you’re not just learning out of a book,” Lawson said.

This EMBA setup is unique in comparison to many graduate programs in both other universities as well as throughout the rest of GVSU, but holds many of the principles that makes the rest of the healthcare management programs strong. 

“We have such a large health care community in West Michigan with Spectrum being the largest provider. It made sense for the university to look at programs that would help advance those organizations,” Lawson said. 

With the advancement of the surrounding health care community, also comes the need for more healthcare workers, something that GVSU is producing at a high rate.

Healthcare Management Degree Guide also mentions areas of study at GVSU such as masters in health administration, masters in medical and bioinformatics, and masters in nursing. While GVSU’s EMBA is one the university’s most geographically specialized, all of the programs add up to the #4 in the Midwest ranking that GVSU received.