Health Administration Master's Degree Program Turns 70
Saint Louis University’s Master of Health Administration (MHA) program is celebrating
its 70th year, a milestone that sets it apart as one of the oldest MHA programs in
the world. The program was started in 1947.
The degree, offered through SLU’s College for Public Health and Social Justice, prepares
students to lead, manage and administer health care services at medical centers and
health care systems across the nation and the world.
As one of the oldest and most prestigious MHA programs in the world, SLU's program
is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education
(CHAME) and has a 100 percent graduation rate as well as a 92 percent placement rate
for its graduates in management position within 90 days of graduation. The program
is also ranked among the top 10 graduate programs for health care management by U.S. News & World Report.
“The benefits of acquiring an MHA from SLU are clear for anyone wanting to make a
meaningful, positive impact in health care management,” Rhonda BeLue, Ph.D., professor
and chair of the Department of Health Management and Policy, said. BeLue assumed leadership
of the program in 2017. She notes that the strong reputation of the program is well-founded.
Health care administration is complex and requires comprehensive management skills
in operations, human resources, finance, communication and health policy. Saint Louis
University recognized this highly-specialized field of study long before other universities
and began shaping a rigorous program that effectively prepares its students to be
outstanding leaders in their field.
“Both the history, as being one of the first programs of its kind, and Saint Louis
University’s Jesuit tradition of Mission-based academic excellence, clearly sets the
MHA program apart from others in the region and the country,” BeLue said. “Saint Louis
University will continue its long, 70-year tradition of preparing tomorrow’s health
care leaders. While it is important to understand that our school is built on 70 years
of excellence, we are clearly focused on the future and our role in preparing health
care leaders to effectively and ethically guide us through the next 70 years and beyond.”
Today, the program continues to offer one of the most comprehensive programs in the
country, working with each individual student to understand leadership potential and
opportunities upon graduation. One example of the program’s continued strength and
relevance to current and future students is it’s Executive MHA program. The program
focuses on the needs of health care professionals and clinicians who are currently
working within health care organizations. The Executive MHA features a majority-online
curriculum, with students meeting in a classroom setting one Saturday per month.
“I was working as an Epic application analyst when I decided to enroll in SLU’s Executive
MHA program,” Chris Meshes (Public Health ’16) said. “My MHA has enabled me to become
a consultant working for a variety of health care organizations, helping analyze and
interpret data in a meaningful way. It is incredibly rewarding to be able to help
health care providers understand their sustainability. With my MHA degree from SLU,
I was able to find my new role and increase my income by more than 100 percent upon
For more information about the benefits of acquiring an MHA from SLU, and to learn
about our Residential and Executive programs, visit the programs.