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Top 20 Graduate Programs in Health Care Management in the South 2016

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By HMD Staff
Published August 2016

The field of health care is experiencing a tremendous amount of growth and change, largely due to healthcare reform, an aging population, the switch to electronic medical records, and several other factors. One of the changes that is most significant is the growing number of health care managers that will be needed to fill the number of new positions. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Occupational Handbook, the field of Health Care Management and Administration is expected to increase by at least 23 percent between now and the year 2020. With rising numbers there will be thousands of new jobs to be filled by highly trained health care managers, executives and administrators. There are several degree options for these positions, including a specialized Master of Business Administration (MBA), a graduate degree in Public Health, a Graduate Health Administration or a degree in Health Care Management. All of these graduate degree options use a curriculum designed to help managers become effective and efficient health care managers and leaders. Many large colleges and universities offer programs of study in this growing area, but there are also many benefits of attending a smaller, regional university. Some of the greatest benefits include a close proximity and lower price tags, but students can also learn in a smaller environment, with more opportunities to work directly with their instructors and peers.

Ranking Methodology

This ranking list has been created to outline the 25 best graduate programs in healthcare management in the southern region of the United States. Average undergraduate enrollment numbers are provided to assess the school size. Factors considered include:

Annual Cost of Attendance

One of the major factors being considered is the overall cost of the graduate program. Schools offering nationally recognized academic training while also keeping student costs low are given higher consideration. Data was gathered from the schools website or the College Navigator Tool.

Points:
Under $10,000 / $10,001 – $15,000/ $15,001 – $20,000:
3 Points / 2 Points / 1 Point

Accreditation

In order to be included in this ranking list an appropriate ranking body must regionally accredit each college or university. Those schools that have received additional accreditation are given an edge over schools without.

Points:

Each accreditation: 1 Point

College and Program Ranking

The next consideration was whether or not a school has been granted acknowledgement by a national ranking body. The major source of such national notoriety comes from the US News and World Report Best Colleges List.

Points:
US News and World Report Rankings (Best Southern University, Most Innovative School, Best Value School, Top Public School):
Top 5 / Top 10 / Top 25 / Top 50
5 Points / 3 Points / 2 Points / 1 Point

Number of Degree Options or Areas of Specialization

Those schools the offer students more than one option for how to pursue a career in health care management afford a higher degree of flexibility in their education. Schools offering more than one degree in this field are given higher preference.

Points:
More Than 1 Available Degree Options or Areas of Specialization = 2 Points

Likelihood of Acceptance

As more and more individuals are pursuing health care management degrees the ability to be accepted to a college program is becoming increasingly competitive. Those schools with higher acceptance rate were given additional points. US News and World Report provided the data for this score.

Points:
Acceptance Rates Above 55% / Above 65% / Above 75%
1 Points / 2 Points / 3 Points

Grading Process

Once the points have been tallied the schools are arranged into groups by the amount of points they have earned. In the cases of ties, preference was given to those schools with the lowest tuition rates.

Ranking the Top 20 Graduate Programs in Health Care Management in the South

#20 – Christian Brothers University – Memphis, Tennessee

Christian Brothers University Best Graduate HCM Southern RegionThe School of Business

Master of Business Administration with Health Care Management Concentration

Program Website
Points: 5

Christian Brothers University has a unique Cohort MBA (CMBA) program that integrates the students, their families, their professional organizations, classmates and the university. The program is designed for busy working professionals who want to remain competitive in the modern and globally expanding world of business. The 35-hour CMBA curriculum is comprised of 11 courses and orientation, completed in sequential order, one course at a time. The curriculum allows students to focus on one subject area at a time for more in-depth learning, concentration, and application of each business discipline. Students must complete the 8 core courses and 3 elective courses to be considered for graduation. This MBA can be earned with a concentration in Healthcare Management to prepare for leadership roles in the rapidly changing health care industry.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $22,740
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #27
US News and World Rank:
#9 Best Value School
Acceptance Rate: 49.7%
Accreditations:
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#19 – Hampton University – Hampton, Virginia

Hampton University Best Graduate HCM Southern RegionThe School of Nursing

Master of Science in Nursing with Administration and Education Concentration

Program Website
Points: 7

Hampton University is home to a Master of Science in Nursing Degree Program with the option to specialize in Administration and Education. The education portion of the program prepares students for collegiate positions in associate or baccalaureate degree nursing education. The administration area emphasizes management of nursing positions in a variety of service agency settings. The program offers training for management level positions in community agencies that directly deliver health care. Graduates are prepared to fill management positions in hospitals, out-patient facilities, home care agencies, mental health centers and other health care agencies.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $9,809
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #18
US News and World Rank: Not Applicable
Acceptance Rate: 29.1%
Accreditations:
Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN)
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#18 – Spring Hill College – Mobile, Alabama

Spring Hill College Best Graduate HCM Southern RegionThe School of Nursing

Master of Science in Nursing – Clinical Nurse Leadership Track

Program Website
Points: 7

The Nursing School at Spring Hill College’s Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) trains current nurses for leadership in the health care delivery system as Clinical Nurse Leaders (CNL). Graduates of this program are advanced generalist clinicians responsible for patient-care outcomes at the site of direct care in various healthcare organizations. The program marries online courses with clinical integration and local preceptors to allow working nurses to complete degree requirements in their local communities and work settings. There are four available tracks:

  1. RN with Bachelor of Science in Nursing to MSN
  2. RN with Non-Nursing Baccalaureate to MSN
  3. RN with Master’s Degree in Nursing Post-Master’s Certificate
  4. RN with Associate Degree in Nursing/Nursing Diploma to MSN

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $8,820
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #21
US News and World Rank: Not Applicable
Acceptance Rate: 51.8%
Accreditations:
Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#17 – Lynchburg College – Lynchburg, Virginia

Lynchburg College Best Graduate HCM Southern Region
The School of Health Science and Human Performance

Master of Science in Nursing – Clinical Nurse Leadership Track

Program Website
Points: 8

Lynchburg College offers an online Master of Science in Nursing degree program designed as a professional development program using a flexible online format. The program is grounded in evidence-based nursing practice and offers students educational experiences in the current knowledge and research in the field. The optional Clinical Nurse Leader track is ideal for nurses who plan to stay in staff nursing positions but want to assume more of a leadership role. The 37-hour online program offers advanced training for generalist nurses who will continue to give expert bedside care in health care facilities. Nurses in this program will develop a knowledge base to apply outcomes-based practice and quality improvement strategies within their organization.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $8,372
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #32
US News and World Rank:
#143 Best Graduate Nursing Program
Acceptance Rate: 66.8%
Accreditations:
Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#16 – Lipscomb University – Nashville, Tennessee

Lipscomb University Best Graduate HCM Southern RegionThe College of Business

Master of Business Administration

Program Website
Points: 10

Lipscomb University offers two excellent degree options for those interested in the management and administration of the health care field. The first degree option, the Master of Business with Health Care Informatics concentration, is designed to provide students with a thorough understanding of the acquisition, storage, retrieval and use of health data to improve the overall quality of care, minimize costs and provide improved outcomes. The Health Care Informatics concentration provides knowledge and skills needed to enhance quality, safety, efficiency and patient-centric health care delivery.

The second degree option is the MBA with a Health Care Management concentration. This program works to prepare leaders who will have the skills and knowledge to pursue opportunities across every aspect of health care, including nursing administration, business department, laboratory management, EMS services management, security, data and records administration, research, education, marketing, recruitment, human services, and more.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $18,360
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #18
US News and World Rank:
#8 Most Innovative School
Acceptance Rate: 55.6%
Accreditations:
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#15 – Loyola University – New Orleans, Louisiana

Loyola University Best Graduate HCM Southern Region
The Department of Professional and Continuing Studies

Master of Science in Nursing in Health Care Systems Management

Program Website
Points: 10

The School of Nursing supports an online non-clinical training program leading to the Master of Science in Nursing in Health Care Systems Management (MSN-HCSM). The program trains nurse managers to have the skills to assume leadership roles upon graduation. The curriculum emphasizes leadership strategies, covering many different aspects of nursing administration. Students learn about everything from disease prevention and health promotion to workforce management. The online format offers the flexibility needed to meet the needs and fill the professional opportunities for future nursing managers, directors, or healthcare executives. The program requires 36 credit hours of graduate coursework, 12 of which are dedicated to core courses and 24 are devoted to Health Care Systems Management major courses. Students can complete the MSN program in 24 months, typically taking one course at a time to allow proper attention to be paid to each course.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $15,830
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #11
US News and World Rank:
#12 Best Value School
Acceptance Rate: 90.3%
Accreditations:
Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#14 – Mississippi College – Clinton, Mississippi

Mississippi College Best Graduate HCM Southern Region
The Department of Health Informatics and The Department of Health Services Administration

Master of Science in Health Informatics and Master of Health Services Administration

Health Informatics Program Website
Master of Health Services Administration Program Website
Points: 10

Mississippi College supports two degree programs for students interested in the management of people and data in the health care field. The Online Master of Science in Health Informatics helps students learn to reduce health care costs, expand patient access to health care and enhance the quality of services by securing the protected delivery of health information. Students will complete training in the following areas: Foundation in Management Information Systems, E-Medicine Business Models, Research Methods and Procedures, Legal Aspects of HealthCare Administration, Organizational Behavior in Health Care Administration, Ethics in Health Services Administration, Integrated Electronic Medical Records and Case Studies in Health Information Management.

The Master of Health Services Administration degree provides students with an interdisciplinary approach to health care that helps graduates excel as leaders. Students learn about the new dimensions in the profession that will provide them with a competitive edge. The degree program is designed to provide flexibility to meet the new and growing needs of healthcare systems, professional, locally and globally. Seminar topics change annually, and all students are expected to present a final paper as part of the requirement for graduation.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $9,888
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #32
US News and World Rank:
#11 Best Value School
Acceptance Rate: 63%
Accreditations:
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#13 – Stetson University – DeLand, Florida

Stetson University Best Graduate HCM Southern Region
The Stetson School of Business – UF College of Pharmacy

Dual Master of Science in Pharmacy and Master of Business Administration

Program Website
Points: 11

Stetson University offers one of the most unique degree programs on this list. The College of Business has paired with the University of Florida College of Pharmacy to offer a dual Master of Science in Pharmacy and Master of Business Administration. This program readies students for careers in pharmacy or health care administration. This innovative partnership allows students to concurrently enroll in both programs to earn their degrees in as few as three years, while still being able to work full-time. The MBA coursework focuses on the pharmaceutical industry and is offered online in an exclusive format to students enrolled in the UF Online MS in Pharmacy program. The program is streamlined, so the same e-learning platforms are used in both programs. Admission to the Stetson program is guaranteed, provided there is satisfactory progress in the UF program. Students typically complete 24 credits in the UF Pharmacy program, and 24 credits in the Stetson MBA program. Since each institution accepts 6 transfer credits from the other, the degrees can be completed in just 48 credits.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $15,924
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #5
US News and World Rank:
#7 Best Value School
Acceptance Rate: 61.2%
Accreditations:
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#12 – Queens University of Charlotte – Charlotte, North Carolina

Queens University Best Graduate HCM Southern RegionThe Presbyterian School of Nursing

Master of Science in Nursing

Program Website
Points: 11

The Queens University of Charlotte Presbyterian School of Nursing is home to two Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree options for nurses who want to rise to the top of their organizations as leaders and managers. The first option is the MSN with a Clinical Nurse Leadership Emphasis. This online program was designed to allow students to advance their profession to better patient care outcomes and improve safety and quality within their health care organization. Graduates are prepared for careers as Clinical Nurse Leaders, generalist clinicians who implement a thorough, integrated approach to nursing practice. Students learn to apply evidence-based practice and design, and implement and evaluate patient-care plans to drive optimal outcomes. The second option is the MSN with Nurse Administration track. Graduates of this program are prepared for careers as Nurse Administrators who combine knowledge of nursing and business in diverse settings. Graduates are qualified to function as members of interdisciplinary executive level teams.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $7,825
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #20
US News and World Rank: Not Applicable
Acceptance Rate: 78.5%
Accreditations:
Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#11 – Campbell University – Buies Creek, North Carolina

Campbell University Best Graduate HCM Southern Region
College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences and Lundy-Fetterman School of Business

Dual Master of Business Administration / Doctor of Pharmacy and Master of Science in Public Health

MBA/PharmD Program Website
Master of Science in Public Health Program Website
Points: 11

Campbell University supports two degree options for those hoping to enter the field of management and administration in a health care or pharmaceutical setting. Students interested in careers in pharmaceutical management can take advantage of the Campbell University dual MBA/PharmD degree program. The Doctor of Pharmacy/MBA helps students develop management skills, including exposure to areas of the pharmacy business such as leadership and problem solving abilities. The program has rolling admissions with classes starting in January, March, April, June, August, or October. Each term lasts 8-weeks and classes meet from 6 p.m. – 10 p.m.. Students can earn the MBA in the following formats:

  • MBA for Professionals – 12 months by taking two courses per term (for a total of six terms).
  • Online MBA – allows you to earn an MBA entirely online.
  • Full Time MBA

The Master of Science in Public Health degree program offers students a solid framework in health care research and outcomes evaluation. The curriculum focuses largely on the advancement of health and prevention of disease, rural health care research, community outreach and service learning opportunities.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $7,020
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #24
US News and World Rank:
#56 Best Graduate Pharmacy Program
Acceptance Rate: 68.1%
Accreditations:
Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP)
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#10 – Union University – Jackson, Tennessee

Union University Best Graduate HCM Southern RegionThe School of Nursing

Master of Science in Nursing and Doctor of Nursing Practice

Program Website
Points: 11

The School of Nursing at Union University has two excellent options for nurses who wish to enter the management side of nursing.

MSN Administration Track The Administration track is an online program through the E-Campus and can be pursued in either a part-time or a full-time format. The program was created to address the rising complexity in modern healthcare systems. Now more than ever professional nurses are being asked to understand the economic and management theories of administrative positions. The program uses an administrative curriculum designed to give professional nurses the knowledge and skills needed to work in a range of administrative and leadership positions throughout health care delivery organizations.

Post-Master’s DNP Executive Leadership Track This program trains nurses for service as executive leaders in hospital or academic settings. The goal  is to train future nursing leaders for high profile positions in hospitals and academic institutions. Nurses in this track have the chance to serve with current leaders of healthcare or academic institutions to gain the knowledge, skills, and wisdom needed to lead healthcare institutions in the future.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $6,566
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #14
US News and World Rank: Not Applicable
Acceptance Rate: 68.6%
Accreditations:
Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#9 – Bellarmine University – Louisville, Kentucky

Bellarmine University Best Graduate HCM Southern Region
The Business School – The School of Nursing

Master of Business Administration, Master of Science in Nursing and Dual Master of Business Administration and Master of Science in Nursing

Health Care Leadership MBA Program Website
MSN Program Website
Points: 12

Students at Bellarmine University interested in a career in management or administration in the health care industry can choose from three unique options, including the following degree programs:

  • The Healthcare Leadership MBA concentration helps students prepare for the rising demand for health care leaders, which is being caused by changes in the way health care is delivered. This program is ideal for both students looking to advance their career in a health organization as well as those moving into health sector management. The curriculum is multidisciplinary to provide a solid foundation of courses in healthcare management fundamentals and applications.
  • The MSN with Nursing Administration track trains nurses for management positions in a range of health care settings. Students learn about financial and economic aspects of health care, human and resource management, and organizational leadership.
  • The MSN/MBA program offers professional nurses the exclusive opportunity to train for leadership, management, and health policy roles in health care organizations. Students must complete all requirements of both the MSN nursing administration track and the MBA program.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $10,371
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #13
US News and World Rank: Not Applicable
Acceptance Rate: 83.4%
Accreditations:
The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#8 – Western Kentucky University – Bowling Green, Kentucky

Western Kentucky University Best Graduate HCM Southern RegionThe Department of Public Health

Master of Health Administration and Master of Public Health

Program Website
Points: 12

The Department of Public Health at Western Kentucky University confers two degrees leading to careers in the field of public health and the management of health organizations. The Master of Health Administration (MHA) program trains students for management and administrative positions in a range of health care facilities, organizations, and agencies such as hospitals, nursing homes, group medical practices, health maintenance organizations, public health agencies and clinics. This curriculum offers students training to qualify them for work in medical sales companies, health planning agencies, the health insurance sector and other related health organizations. The Master of Public Health (MPH) is a professional degree program designed to meet the needs of an array of health professionals. The program emphasizes the preparation of motivated students for careers as practitioners of public health, while also offering the opportunity to combine public health practice with current career or academic paths. Students in this program can choose to specialize in one of three concentrations: Health Education, Environmental Health and Generalist.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $10,300
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #31
US News and World Rank:
#12 Top Public School
Acceptance Rate: 93.3%
Accreditations:
The Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH)
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#7 – Rollins College – Winter Park, Florida

Rollins College Best Graduate HCM Southern RegionThe College of Professional Studies

Master of Health Services Administration

Program Website
Points: 13

Rollins College offers a convenient and flexible graduate degree program for those hoping to enter the field of health services administration. Students in the Master of Health Services Administration (MHSA) degree program receive the skills they will need to help improve the health care industry. They will learn these skills through a multidisciplinary training program, complete with opportunities to conduct research alongside faculty. The program is designed to accommodate busy working professionals with classes held on alternating Fridays and Saturdays. The mission of the MHSA program is to train efficient, empathetic, ethical and compassionate healthcare management professionals. Graduates possess a framework in healthcare services management, leadership, approaches, and technology to move into leadership positions in the field of health care. MHSA students may add a 12 credit hour certification as a Florida Nursing Home Administrator. This certification includes one course and completion of an internship. To graduate, students must complete 46 to 53 credit hours, depending upon prior healthcare experience.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $19,766
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #1
US News and World Rank:
#3 Most Innovative School
Acceptance Rate: 57.3%
Accreditations:
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#6 – Mercer University – Macon, Georgia

Mercer University Best Graduate HCM Southern Region
Eugene W. Stetson School of Business and Economics, Penfield College, College of Pharmacy and College of Health Professions

Master of Public Health, Dual Master of Business Administration/Doctor of Pharmacy, Online Master of Science in Health Informatics, MSN and Dual MPH / Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD)

Program Website
Points: 12

Mercer University is one of the best southern schools for students hoping to enter the health care management or administration field. The university offers a range of graduate degree options to pursue this dream in different ways, depending upon the student’s career aspirations. The degree options include:

  • The Dual Master of Business Administration/Doctor of Pharmacy degree program is for qualified students who wish to pursue the Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree concurrently with the Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) degree. The degrees complement one another to broaden occupational and professional opportunities in community, industry or institutional practice.
  • The online Master of Science in Health Informatics program is for students with an undergraduate degree working in clinical settings or an IT-related field. The program focuses on the Health Informatics area at a national level and on Health Informatics initiatives at the state level. Students in this program develop professional knowledge and skills in the following areas: Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) technologies, Interoperability Standards, Risk Assessment, Ethics, Healthcare IT Project Management, Clinical Decision Support Systems (CDSS) and many more.
  • Georgia Baptist College of Nursing of Mercer University offers a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree with a Family Nurse Practitioner specialty. The degree can be earned with an Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist Concentration. Students can pursue the program full-time or part-time.
  • The Master of Public Health (MPH) program trains students to fill positions where they will help minimize health disparities and improve the quality of life within communities. The Generalist MPH offers skills to pursue positions including educators, epidemiologists, biostatisticians, journalists, researchers, administrators, environmentalists, demographers, social workers, laboratory scientists, and attorneys.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $14,127
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #8
US News and World Rank: Not Applicable
Acceptance Rate: 66.7%
Accreditations:
Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN)
The Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH)
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#5 – Harding University – Searcy, Arkansas

Harding University Best Graduate HCM Southern Region
The Paul R. Carter College of Business Administration

Master of Business Administration with Specialization in Health Care Management

Program Website
Points: 13

Harding University’s Paul R. Carter College of Business Administration offers an MBA program designed to prepare business professionals with a Christian world-view for lives of service. This program is highly flexible to meet the needs of busy working professionals. Students complete a minimum of twelve 600-level courses, up to a maximum of fourteen 600-level courses, 10 of which are core-required courses. The Health Care Management Concentration MBA Track allows students to customize their program to meet their individual career objectives. Students can complete all of their elective choices in one area of concentration or pursue coursework in various concentration areas.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $12,576
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #22
US News and World Rank:
#4 Best Value School
Acceptance Rate: 99.1%
Accreditations:
Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCACS)

#4 – Samford University – Birmingham, Alabama

Samford University Best Graduate HCM Southern Region
The Department of Public Health, The College of Law and The College of Health Sciences

Master of Health Informatics and Analytics, Master of Science in Health Law & Policy and Master of Public Health

Program Website
Points: 14

Students interested in careers in health care management, administration or public health have three excellent options at Samford University:

  • Master of Health Informatics and Analytics (MHIA): The MHIA program offers students the knowledge and skills required to plan, create, evaluate and implement digital foundations for health care systems. Students learn to use informatics in healthcare to help protect patient data using analytics to evaluate relevant information from this data. The program integrates a robust set of health informatics courses with patient-centered values.
  • Master of Science in Health Law & Policy: The online Master of Science program helps students develop the expertise needed in the complex world of health law and policy. In conjunction with the Cumberland School of Law, students complete coursework in: Health Law, Regulatory Affairs, Public Policy, Insurance and Health Care Administration, with a particular emphasis on health-care compliance. Graduates of this program are prepared for work in compliance, human resources, insurance and health-care administration.
  • Master of Public Health (MPH): The MPH program is designed to train students to become leaders with the skills and knowledge to address modern global health problems. The interdisciplinary approach helps students apply cutting edge scientific knowledge to build solutions to some of the greatest threats to human health.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $17,617
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #4
US News and World Rank:
#15 Best Value School
Acceptance Rate: 81.9%
Accreditations:
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#3 – Belmont University – Nashville, Tennessee

Belmont University Best Graduate HCM Southern Region
Jack C. Massey Graduate School of Business, the Inman College of Health Sciences and the College of Pharmacy

Master of Business Administration with Specialization in Health Care

Program Website
Points: 16

The Belmont University MBA for Healthcare Professionals (HCMBA) is the newest MBA program offered by the school and has been designed by healthcare professionals in the field  to train future healthcare leaders. The program is a joint venture between Belmont University’s Jack C. Massey Graduate School of Business, Inman College of Health Sciences, and College of Pharmacy. The robust HCMBA is rigorous and challenging, training students in professionally relevant areas. Graduate students  are admitted year-round, however the program begins using a cohort group each August. Courses are offered in a convenient weeknight format (two evenings a week between Monday and Thursday), supplemented with a one week concentrated daytime residency. Students can complete the degree program in two years, which includes an 8-10 day international study-abroad experience at the end of the first year.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $19,120
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #5
US News and World Rank:
#2 Most Innovative School
Acceptance Rate: 82.7%
Accreditations:
The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#2 – James Madison University – Harrisonburg, Virginia

James Madison University Best Graduate HCM Southern RegionThe Department of Nursing

Master of Science in Nursing

Program Website
Points: 20

James Madison is home to two Master of Science in Nursing degree options for students with an interest in the leadership side of nursing. The MSN with Leadership Concentrations are the Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL), a 38 credit hour program or the Nurse Administrator (NA), a 32 credit hour plan of study. Graduates of the CNL concentration will gain the skills and knowledge to provide leadership in direct clinical care settings. This program has been designed to meet the competencies established by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN). Graduates of the CNL program are eligible to take the CNL certification examination offered by the Commission on Nurse Certification. The NA concentration prepares graduates to tackle management positions in larger health care organizations. Students can pursue their studies in either a full-time or part-time program format. The Nurse Administrator program has been designed to meet the competencies established by the American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE). Students complete 400 hours of practicum experience. Graduates of the NA concentration are eligible to take the Advanced Nurse Executive certification examination through the American Nurses Credentialing Center after holding an executive administrative position for 24 months.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $10,416
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #7
US News and World Rank:
#6 Most Innovative School
#2 Top Public School
Acceptance Rate: 65.7%
Accreditations:
Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

#1 – Appalachian State University – Boone, North Carolina

Appalachian State University Best Graduate HCM Southern Region
The Cratis D. Williams School of Graduate Studies

Master of Health Administration

Program Website
Points: 20

The Department of Nutrition and Health Care Management at the School of Graduate Studies supports an online Master of Health Administration (MHA) degree program. The program uses a hybrid-learning format designed to accommodate the needs of busy working professionals. The academic mission of the program is to train professionals to secure positions in health care management and administration at a variety of health organizations. Students who complete this program will have the knowledge and skills to enter a range of health care settings as leaders and pioneers. The curriculum integrates theoretical principles with applied philosophies of health administration and is taught by faculty who possess extensive applied work experience in the health care field.

Average Annual Graduate Tuition: $7,084
US News and World Report Best Southern Regional University Rank: #10
US News and World Rank:
#4 Most Innovative School
#13 Best Value School
#3 Top Public School
Acceptance Rate: 62.7%
Accreditations:
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC)

Opportunities for a Graduate Degree in Health Care Management in the Southern Region of the US

Regular changes in the health care field continue to create a need for qualified professionals with graduate degrees in the field of Health Care Management. To fill these new positions, students will need to learn skills in both the business world as well as the health care field. They will need a number of highly specialized skills necessary to understand the details of managing in the healthcare industry. A degree in health care management or administration from a southern regional university is a great way to gain the skills needed to become a manager, administrator or executive in this field.

About the Author

After earning a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Rutgers University and then a Master of Science in Clinical and Forensic Psychology from Drexel University, Kristen began a career as a therapist at two prisons in Philadelphia. At the same time she volunteered as a rape crisis counselor, also in Philadelphia. After a few years in the field she accepted a teaching position at a local college where she currently teaches online psychology courses. Kristen began writing in college and still enjoys her work as a writer, editor, professor and mother.