MHA vs. MPA in Health Administration degree programs

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5+ Year Member
Apr 8, 2018
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So here is my strategy based on the schools that I have gotten into and I wanted to know what you all think. I am only looking to do a graduate degree in health administration in NYC or Long Island on the east coast metropolitan area. I have gotten into all six schools I applied for. New York University (MPA in Health Policy & Management CAHME accredited since 1985), Columbia University Part-Time MHA (CAHME accredited since 2009), Hofstra University MHA (AUPHA accredited since 2002 and the program has been around since 1986 and in the process of applying and being considered for CAHME accreditation), LIU Brooklyn and LIU Post MPA in Health Care Administration (NASPAA accredited National Association of Schools of Public Affairs & Administration and in the process of applying for CAHME accreditation), and SUNY Stony Brook MHA (MSCHE accredited and program started brand new in Fall 2017 and will have CAHME accreditation most likely come Spring 2020).

I think that NYU would be the best choice and here's why. NYU is on a top 10 list of most powerful alumni networks in all of the United States. Penn State is 1, Indiana is 2, and UMICH is 3, and NYU is 10. I went to UMICH for my undergrad which is pretty cool. But I'm thinking, especially when trying to find a Hospital Administration type job (LONG TERM DREAM JOB GOAL: Administrative Director of a Clinical Department like Surgery) in NYC for after graduating, that my chances are a lot higher if I stick with NYU, because chances are, I have UMICH and NYU on my resume, and it gets handed over to someone else who went to either school. Again, there are no guarantees, and I am interested in hospital administrative fellowships after I graduate, but I'm thinking, like a roll of dice in a casino, that my odds are higher bumping into a fellow alum if I do the Master of Public Administration in Health Policy & Management at NYU.

MHA vs. MPA. especially when it comes down to Columbia vs. NYU. The program director of the MPA program at NYU told me that he personally started the MHA program at Columbia, around the time it became accredited back in 2009. Also, he said, since he switched to working for the NYU program, but not based on him alone of course, that grads from the NYU Wagner Health Policy and Management Program (with the MPA degree) are indeed running the major hospital systems in New York City. He also stated that "The difference with the MHA (which, by the way, I created at Columbia before I moved to NYU) is slight and doesn't matter for your long-term dream job goal".

So in conclusion, I still have a few more weeks to decide, but I'm thinking of NYU. NYU also has over 12,000+ living alumni from the Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service living all over the United States. What that means specifically for the MPA in Health Policy and Management program specifically, I don't know just yet, but it's gotta be a huge network like University of Minnesota MHA program.

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7+ Year Member
Sep 28, 2014
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hey op! what did you end up deciding?

any idea about online programs, and if they count as much as offline ones as far as reputation goes? (found a couple of programs that are CAHME accredited too)