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MHA or MBA? which is smarter for a better career?

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MHA or MBA? which is smarter for a better career? [#permalink] New post 30 Nov 2011, 17:20
I'm working towards becoming a health care admin and based on the research I've done it looks like the MHA is almost perfect for what I want. However I'm scared that in the event of not being able to find a job a MHA degree makes me look too narrow in regards to the field I can work for, and an MBA would be much more broad. What do you guys think? I'm new to all this so please help me out. I also thought about going for an MBA with emphasis in healthcare which probably seems like the best option as of now.. but same question, is that too narrow of a field?

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Re: MHA or MBA? which is smarter for a better career? [#permalink] New post 01 Dec 2011, 09:10
I definitely think the MBA with a healthcare focus is the way to go.

I doubt that any healthcare employer would reject you for having a healthcare MBA instead of an MHA.

But having an MHA would do little to help you outside of healthcare in case you decide to make a career change later on (full disclosure: I made a career change out of healthcare after completing a partially healthcare-focused MBA).

Further, I think that a healthcare MBA would open more doors throughout the healthcare industry as compared to an MHA. An MHA is probably most appropriate on the provider and payer side, whereas an MBA could address those and the pharma/biotech/devices side.

However, I also think the quality of the school matters a lot. A super elite MHA program would probably be a better choice than a mid-range MBA.

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Re: MHA or MBA? which is smarter for a better career? [#permalink] New post 01 Dec 2011, 09:11
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Re: MHA or MBA? which is smarter for a better career? [#permalink] New post 01 Dec 2011, 12:46
It's hard to say. I would actually take the opposite side and say get a MPH/MHA. If you know that's what you really want to do, I think the programs are much more tailored to what administrative fellowships are looking for and I think at some places this degree is probably still more respected than the MBA. I think it's true that many (definitely not all) will take an MBA as a substitute, however, the recruiting process for these things is a whole different ball game. They almost always require letters from program administrators, faculty, etc which isn't the same way that MBA programs tend to work. So if you do get an MBA, getting it from somewhere that's familiar with the hospital admin fellow recruiting path I think would be helpful.

The other thing to consider is placement, because I suspect these programs actually have better placement than MBA programs. I know University of Minnesota (probably also Michigan), for example, has 100% placement, which is something to consider. Also, I'd be willing to bet that you actually find the same amount of crossover career-wise. What I mean is that in MBA programs, you will find 1-2 people going into hospital administration and in MHA programs, you will likewise have 1-2 people going into industry (including in some of the fields, like pharma, mentioned above). They will not be business roles, but from what you've said, that's not what you want. It seems that most people wanting to be involved on the delivery side don't really want to go into pharma/devices anyway.

Geography might be something to consider as well. As you get down the ranking list, some of the opportunities may not be at big hospitals, which might mean you're managing a unit in a small town somewhere. The kind of opportunities that tend to show up at MBA programs are from bigger systems, which often are going to be in bigger cities.

Tuition is a wash if you go to a top MHA (same tuition as top MBA), which might tilt more favorably to the MBA side.

Good luck!

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Re: MHA or MBA? which is smarter for a better career? [#permalink] New post 08 Dec 2011, 11:44
How about Dual instead? That's what my friend went for and now he's doing very well
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Re: MHA or MBA? which is smarter for a better career? [#permalink] New post 10 Feb 2012, 00:25
I think MBA is better for a good career..........So Many students are there who desires to do MBA for their higher education............This really has a great value in the economy and It makes a student's future high...
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Re: MHA or MBA? which is smarter for a better career? [#permalink] New post 15 Feb 2012, 00:40
There a lot more people applying to get into a top MBA program at a top school than those trying to get into an MHA program. For example, more than 1,200 people will compete for openings in the MBA program at the Kenan-Flagler School of Business at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Meanwhile, on average, about 120 students apply to the residential MHA program. If you're worried about your chances of getting in or you are looking at the odds, then you might look at the MHA degree. Of course, some students wind up getting a dual MBA/MHA degree, but those are rare and require a much greater commitment of time and energy.I think MBA is better for you for a better career.
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Re: MHA or MBA? which is smarter for a better career? [#permalink] New post 15 Feb 2012, 04:36
I think MBA is a better career.

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Re: MHA or MBA? which is smarter for a better career? [#permalink] New post 13 Apr 2012, 04:41
Both MHA and MBA are different courses, and anyone can choose only one. MHA is related to health and MBA is related to business marketing. Actually everything depends on you, but my personal suggestion is in favor of MHA. Because you also want to becoming a health care admin.
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Re: MHA or MBA? which is smarter for a better career? [#permalink] New post 17 May 2012, 02:49
Though HealthCare is the upcoming and fastest growing field, I would still rate MBA ahead of MHA. MBA gives you a much wider scope. Go ahead with MBA.
Re: MHA or MBA? which is smarter for a better career?   [#permalink] 17 May 2012, 02:49
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