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What to Look for in a Healthcare Administration Degree Online

Smiling female doctor standing with medical colleagues in a hospital

Want a career that truly makes a difference? Health systems are in dire need of quality administrators, and they’re willing to pay well. 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, careers in healthcare management and administration will grow 28% between 2021-2031, with median earnings of $101,340. This sounds enticing, but you may worry about the demand of returning to school as an adult learner with a career, a family, volunteer commitments and more.

Fortunately, online learning offers a path to higher earnings without all the stress of in-person classes. 

An online healthcare administration degree can jumpstart your career, increase your earnings and allow you to change healthcare for the better. But how do you know which degree program is right for you? Here are the key characteristics to look for when you select your program. 

Qualified Instructors

Who is the best person to learn from? Someone who has done what you hope to do and done it well. The best schools hire true experts in the field, including names you recognize (or would recognize if you were already in the world of healthcare administration). 

However, it’s not enough to just hire good instructors. To get the most out of your tuition, you should have access to those instructors. Building strong relationships with industry leaders is a great way to get good recommendations, build connections and master the skills you need to thrive in your career. That’s hard to do if you’re in a classroom with 500 other students or if most of the learning happens with a teacher’s assistant. At SNU, students learn directly from the most successful people in healthcare administration. 

Learning That Suits Your Lifestyle 

No matter how well-respected a program might be, it’s not a good fit if you don’t have the time or resources necessary to complete the program. Poor academic performance, financial challenges, trouble balancing college work and uncertainty about the future are among the top reasons students drop out of college.

Choose a school that can meet you where you are. For most adult learners, this means flexible course options, built-in support and a wide range of financial aid options. Before you enroll, take a long hard look at your life. Assess where or how school fits in, and only commit to an institution that suits your current needs.     

Respected Institution 

A degree shows that your knowledge has been tested and your intellect has been challenged. Employers want to hire people who know what they're doing, not just people with a few fancy initials after their name. This is why it’s so important to choose a quality institution for higher learning. 

Here are some hallmarks of a respected institution:

  • Students have a high post-graduation employment rate. 
  • Local employers routinely hire students from your school. 
  • The school has been around for several years, and its programs are accredited. 
  • The classes are challenging, and degrees are more than just a piece of paper. 

Healthy Learning Environment

Your life as a student is just one aspect of who you are. The rest of your existence matters too. Quality institutions recognize this and help you cultivate balance with: 

  • Flexible learning options to suit your schedule. 
  • Supportive instructors who truly want you to succeed. 
  • A learning environment that supports the whole person with networking opportunities, extracurricular activities and supportive staff. 
  • A financial aid office that can meet you where you are, help you pay for school and support you to attain your financial goals. 

A healthy learning environment doesn’t just ensure learners feel balanced and whole. It also improves outcomes by helping students graduate on time, reducing dropout rates and ensuring graduates are emotionally healthy professionals prepared to enter the workforce. 

Peer and University Support System 

You can’t succeed if you feel overwhelmed and unsupported. At SNU, support for the learner is every bit as important as academic rigor. Some of the strategies we use include: 

  • An innovative cohort model that offers friendship, support and the ability to begin cultivating a professional network now. 
  • Support from our chaplain whenever you need it. 
  • Compassionate, caring instructors who are deeply committed to your success. 
  • Support for veterans to transition to civilian life and thrive in school via our award-winning VETS Center
  • A deep and abiding commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion. Every learner brings something unique to our community. 

Is It Time to Get Your Healthcare Administration Degree Online? 

If you’re thinking about returning to school, consider whether now is the right time and weigh the benefits of various educational pathways. Try asking yourself the following questions. If you answer in the affirmative to several, a healthcare administration degree online could be an ideal choice: 

  • Are you comfortable with self-directed learning outside of a classroom? 
  • Are you interested in healthcare? 
  • Does the idea of management or administration seem appealing to you? 
  • Do you have enough time to commit a few hours to school each week? 
  • Are you comfortable taking out loans and applying for financial aid? 
  • Are you prepared to fully commit to returning to school? 
  • Do you have the right supports in place, such as childcare or the support of a spouse?  

SNU is committed to the success of every learner. To explore online learning options, check out our free guide, “What to Expect from an Online Degree Program.”

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