It didn’t take Arthur Thu ’23 long to connect the dots between his health information technology (IT) course at Stonehill and his real-world view of health IT in action as an intern at Boston Children’s Hospital.

The hospital was migrating to a single electronic medical record system, a topic well covered by the course. “Everything I learned in class was almost identical to what they were trying to implement in the hospital,” said Thu, who recently accepted a position in the health records department at Lifespan Healthcare systems in Rhode Island. 

The connection is no accident: Stonehill’s healthcare management program is taught by mentoring faculty who, in many cases, have extensive experience in the field. Professors’ practical insights lend critical currency as they prepare students to succeed with specializations in areas such as healthcare supply chain management, an emerging area of interest in light of the challenges laid bare by the pandemic.  

“Stonehill’s professors see healthcare’s rapid pace of change unfold in real-time,” says Matthew Larkin ’04, chief operating officer at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. “They know that information from a textbook or case study could be completely different just a semester later and adapt their teaching accordingly. It’s not something you would fully understand if you weren’t living it every day.” 

A Career-Minded Curriculum 

Adjunct Professor Larry Lencz joined the Stonehill faculty 30 years ago with clear visibility into healthcare via his career in long-term care administration. The experience equips him to help students not only become big thinkers when it comes to healthcare systems but also understand practical issues, such as working with state regulators. “I show students how to manage the situations they will encounter throughout their careers — how to be problem-solvers and decision-makers, to deal with people confidently and constructively,” says Lencz. 

I show students how to manage the situations they will encounter throughout their careers — how to be problem-solvers and decision-makers, to deal with people confidently and constructively

Career preparation is the bottom line of Stonehill’s top-ranked program, one of only 52 nationwide programs — and Massachusetts’ only — certified by the Association of University Programs in Health Administration (AUPHA). The program combines a rigorous foundation of business and healthcare management courses, rounded out by a 400-hour internship requirement. Healthcare management majors are encouraged to pursue one of five concentrations: public health; healthcare for priority/at-risk populations; performance improvement and consulting; fundraising and development for not-for-profit health and human service organizations; and healthcare supply chain management. 

“I have had so many amazing interns — some of whom became employees — through partnering with Stonehill’s healthcare management program,” says Kristen Heim from Boston Children’s Hospital. “These are the next leaders in healthcare.” 

All healthcare management majors complete a senior seminar taught by Department Chair Mitch Glavin, in partnership with Stonehill’s Career Development team. Students in the seminar identify a desired post-college role and prepare to pursue it through skills-building opportunities, such as mock interviews performed before the class. “I call it their personal development plan for life after Stonehill,” explains Glavin.  

Member of Career Development working with student

The experience, combined with Stonehill’s powerful alumni network and additional support from Career Development — down to the Suit a Skyhawk program that outfits students for interviews — results in a job placement rate hovering around 100% within six months of graduation. Among the many success stories: 

  • Mark Scagliarini ’96, a supply chain leader at Medically Home, an organization at the vanguard of a national movement to bring healthcare to patients’ homes. 
  • Nancy Mamlock ’14, operations manager of U.S. Policy and Government Relations Operation at Pfizer. 
  • Brian Schleicher ’02, an executive director at athenahealth, a $5.7 billion healthcare services company based in Watertown, Massachusetts. 
  • Arjun Santosh ’20, Ambulatory Clinic Supervisor at Boston Children’s Hospital.

“We often observe that about half of students already have a job by the time they graduate,” adds Glavin. “There’s a big tent of organizations and roles where students can apply their degree.”

Enhancing Medicine Is the Mission 

Brianna (Gardiner) Pelter ’17 credits the rigor and diversity of Stonehill’s liberal arts curriculum for her success in her current role as a strategy and business planning officer at Aetna, a CVS Health Company. Following an internship with the company, Pelter entered Aetna’s full-time General Management Development Program (GMDP), rotating roles and geographies every 18 months. Her outstanding work in the program resulted in CVS honoring her on its website as a GMDP success story.

“At Stonehill, I got to try several classes and internship experiences, which exposed me to different ways of working and communicating,” Pelter says. “I became very comfortable with the kind of change I experienced here at Aetna once I graduated.” 

The ability to adapt is highly relevant preparation for a field where change is the only constant. “I tell students, ‘You’re not going to be sitting down. You’re setting up clinical teams to succeed on the front lines of care,’” says Glavin. “It’s meaningful work — a true mission.” 

Indeed, the connection between Stonehill’s own mission — the education of hearts and minds with a social justice bent — and a career in healthcare management is a natural one. “I’m far from the bedside, but I feel I am making patients’ lives better,” adds Larkin. “I like the idea of coming in to work every day for the greater good.” 


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