Popular Healthcare MBA adds online option.

In the three short years since the College of Business at Florida International University (FIU) launched its Healthcare MBA (HCMBA), it has logged impressive results.

Recently, for example, it was ranked 34th in Modern Healthcare’s 2013 listing of Top Business Graduate Schools for Physician-Executives, and the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education (CAHME) Accreditation Council approved its initial three-year accreditation.

To meet demand, the college decided to add an online version, retaining the features of the hybrid program, such as a small class size of 35, while making it available to a broader audience.

Kara Marante, a member of the first online HCMBA class

“We designed the online option especially for those whose professional or personal lives make it very difficult or impossible for them to attend Saturday classes,” said Nancy Borkowski, the program’s executive director. “We also are tapping those who live outside the area, including many members of the military.”

The online program includes three residencies in Miami during which students will participate in professional development seminars and interact with C-level healthcare administrators and state legislators, including health policymakers.

Program responds to market realities.

Borkowski credits Joyce J. Elam, former executive dean of the college and now dean of University College—which includes FIU Online—with “having the vision to recognize that there will be a leadership workforce shortage in healthcare” and with supporting the program’s creation.

For Elam, offering the HCMBA and now helping put it online, “is a way that we can add value to the healthcare community by preparing individuals who will lead this crucial industry sector in the future.”

One such future leader is incoming HCMBA online student Kara Marante, director, patient and guest relations, Miami Children’s Hospital.

“I feel that the MBA program will help me further my endeavors for a senior leadership position by honing my business acumen and broadening my understanding of healthcare organizational development,” she said. “Many of my colleagues have MBAs from FIU and when I reviewed the options on the Internet, I learned of this new program, which was well suited to my learning and professional objectives.”


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