{"ItemType":0,"Id":7852,"Key":"54c57cbf-0dd8-4c9f-a227-d35d266bb94a","TemplateId":5711,"SortOrder":11,"Name":"Michelle Coben","DocumentTypeAlias":"studentProfilePage","DocumentTypeId":5688,"WriterName":"jscott16","CreatorName":"jscott16","WriterId":60,"CreatorId":60,"Path":"-1,5726,6177,7852","CreateDate":"2022-05-07T14:07:31","UpdateDate":"2022-05-21T16:39:58","Version":"00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000","UrlName":"michelle-coben","Level":3,"IsDraft":false,"Url":"http://publichealth.wvu.edu/who-we-are/student-profiles/michelle-coben/","metaKeywords":"","pageTitle":"","navigationSettings":"","umbracoUrlName":"","metaDescription":"","navigationTitle":"","hideFromSearch":false,"umbracoNaviHideChildren":false,"seoSettings":"","umbracoRequireSSL":false,"umbracoNaviHide":false,"auditNotes":"","auditStatus":"","profileLastName":"Coben","profileQuote":"Public health is at the forefront of our minds more than ever, and so I found it to be an extremely motivating time to be learning about how to implement change in healthcare.","profileFirstName":"Michelle ","videoYouTubeURL":"","profileSuffix":"","profilePhoto":{"src":"/media/6637/img_2237.jpg","focalPoint":{"left":0.50363196125907994,"top":0.37090909090909091},"crops":[{"alias":"Preview Image","width":200,"height":200,"coordinates":null},{"alias":"Profile Image","width":1200,"height":675,"coordinates":null}]},"featuredImage":"","featuredBlurb":"","isFeatured":false,"areaOfEmphasis":"","graduationDate":"2022-05-01T00:00:00","studentType":1237,"profileMinor":"","priorDegreesEarned":[{"Key":"47218959-d079-4b78-9c79-ecafc6a35a34","Id":0,"Name":"University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music","IsDraft":false,"ItemType":0,"DocumentTypeAlias":"sPHDegreesEarned","DocumentTypeId":5701,"TemplateId":0,"SortOrder":0,"UrlName":null,"WriterName":null,"CreatorName":null,"WriterId":0,"CreatorId":0,"Path":null,"CreateDate":"0001-01-01T00:00:00","UpdateDate":"0001-01-01T00:00:00","Version":"00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000","Level":0,"Url":"#","programDropdown":"Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA)","priorProgram":"","priorMajor":"Musical Theatre","priorMinor":"","priorInstitution":"University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music","priorYearReceived":2017}],"program":[{"ItemType":0,"Id":5668,"Key":"1d495d64-3afe-46a9-aa79-f8d326f6288d","TemplateId":5704,"SortOrder":0,"Name":"Master of Health Administration","DocumentTypeAlias":"SPHprogramPage","DocumentTypeId":4313,"WriterName":"jnn0006","CreatorName":"kibrown","WriterId":18,"CreatorId":46,"Path":"-1,1316,4615,4713,5668","CreateDate":"2019-03-25T12:48:08","UpdateDate":"2021-09-30T14:26:19","Version":"00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000","UrlName":"master-of-health-administration","Level":4,"IsDraft":false,"Url":"/students/graduate-programs/master-of-health-administration/","metaKeywords":"","pageTitle":"Master of Health Administration (MHA)","navigationSettings":"","umbracoUrlName":"","metaDescription":"","navigationTitle":"","hideFromSearch":true,"umbracoNaviHideChildren":false,"seoSettings":"","umbracoRequireSSL":false,"umbracoNaviHide":false,"auditNotes":"Preferred GRE scores of 150 (verbal), 150 (quantitative), 4.0 (analytical writing)\r\n-GRE waived with previous terminal degree (MD, JD, etc.) or 3+ years of directly-related (public health or health administration) work experience\r\n-GMAT may be substituted for the GRE","auditStatus":"Needs Reviewed","programOverviewVideoUrl":"","introContent":"<p>A Master of Health Administration (MHA) is a professional degree focused on the organization, delivery and management of healthcare and public health systems and services. It is the premier program for those seeking to lead the health systems of the future.</p>\r\n<p>The WVU MHA program prepares students for promising careers leading innovative, population health-oriented health systems. Graduates leave our program with the skills necessary to work in a variety of healthcare and public health settings such as hospitals, medical group practices, long-term and rehabilitation care facilities, behavioral health systems, healthcare consulting firms, and health departments. Students will also be excellently prepared for post-graduate administrative fellowships.</p>\r\n<p>The program offers maximum flexibility with full-time, part-time, residential and <a href=\"https://online.wvu.edu/programs/health-administration-mha/\">online</a> options available. </p>\r\n<p>As the only program in West Virginia to be granted membership in the <a href=\"https://www.aupha.org/home\">Association for University Programs in Health Administration</a> (AUPHA), West Virginia University MHA students and faculty have exclusive access to a resource-rich network, maintaining the program's delivery of cutting-edge health administration and policy education and training.</p>","programOverview":"<p>The MHA program at WVU focuses on providing students with both a breadth and depth of knowledge in areas critical to success as an administrative leader in the health sector, including:</p>\r\n<ul>\r\n<li>Health Services and Operations Management</li>\r\n<li>Leadership and Organizational Behavior</li>\r\n<li>Health Finance and Economics</li>\r\n<li>Health Policy, Law and Ethics</li>\r\n<li>Managerial Decision Making</li>\r\n<li>Health Information Systems</li>\r\n<li>Healthcare Quality and Outcomes Management</li>\r\n</ul>\r\n<p>The program requires courses across these disciplines. Additionally, elective courses allow students to specialize in a variety of areas. Importantly, a robust practice-based internship requirement, paired with a professional development component, assures students experiential application of the competencies and skills learned in the classroom.</p>\r\n<h3>Internship Experience </h3>\r\n<p>All MHA students complete a health administration internship as a required component to the MHA program. Internships allow MHA students an opportunity to apply the skills they are learning in the classroom in practical ways that make an impact. A variety of placement opportunities are available through the program’s local, state and regional partners in healthcare and public health systems and services. Students working full-time can complete the internship with their current organization.</p>\r\n<h3>Professional Development and Career Readiness</h3>\r\n<p>The MHA program incorporates four semesters of professional development seminars to assure our students are equipped with the essential skills and professionalism required of today’s healthcare leaders. This begins with a team-building retreat at the <a rel=\"noopener\" href=\"https://adventurechallenge.wvu.edu/\" target=\"_blank\" title=\"WVU Outdoor Education Center\">WVU Outdoor Education Center </a>as each new cohort enters the program. Monthly professional seminars address topics such as: networking, resume writing, job interview skills, etiquette, conflict resolution, negotiation, emotional intelligence, and other essential leadership skills.</p>","programSummary":"A Master of Health Administration (MHA) is a professional degree focused on the organization, delivery and management of healthcare and public health systems and services.","sidebarLinks":"[{\"name\":\"Student Resources\",\"udi\":\"umb://document/a28b56f737114b6fa9d21956ca677661\"},{\"name\":\"Why choose health administration?\",\"url\":\"https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdjIOgpe5SE&feature=youtu.be\"}]","tuition":[{"ItemType":0,"Id":6413,"Key":"1b07021b-e3ec-4aa0-8dce-300590bf18c6","TemplateId":6408,"SortOrder":11,"Name":"Tuition","DocumentTypeAlias":"tuitionOverview","DocumentTypeId":6409,"WriterName":"ralintner","CreatorName":"jnn0006","WriterId":10,"CreatorId":18,"Path":"-1,1316,4615,6413","CreateDate":"2019-10-25T13:31:36","UpdateDate":"2021-04-05T14:01:58","Version":"00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000","UrlName":"tuition","Level":3,"IsDraft":false,"Url":"/students/tuition/","metaKeywords":"","pageTitle":"","navigationSettings":"","umbracoUrlName":"tuition","metaDescription":"","navigationTitle":"","hideFromSearch":false,"umbracoNaviHideChildren":false,"seoSettings":"","umbracoRequireSSL":false,"umbracoNaviHide":false,"auditNotes":"","auditStatus":"","schoolYear":"2020-2021"}],"contactUsButton":"[{\"name\":\"Graduate Program Information Request Form\",\"udi\":\"umb://document/32ed989edd6649218c9708d70374485c\"}]","possibleCareers":"Hospital administrator\r\nHealth program or service line manager\r\nBehavioral health administrator\r\nHealth department director\r\nHuman resources manager\r\nQuality, safety and/or patient experience specialist or manager\r\nHealth data analyst\r\nHealthcare consultant\r\nOrganization or agency director\r\nHealth policy expert","showAUPHAWidget":true,"programContactsLabel":"","potentialEmployers":"Hospitals\r\nMedical group practices\r\nInsurance and managed care organizations\r\nLong-term care and rehabilitation services\r\nBehavioral health systems\r\nConsulting firms\r\nLocal and state health departments\r\nPharmaceutical companies\r\nBiotechnology and medical device companies\r\nHealth research organizations\r\nHealthcare think tanks","applyLink":"[{\"name\":\"Apply Now\",\"udi\":\"umb://document/a92f295981694fcc8beae105241a4745\"}]","programContacts":[{"Key":"b9a0f703-62bb-4631-8ae4-569272d532d0","Id":0,"Name":"52539 Lauren Devine","IsDraft":false,"ItemType":0,"DocumentTypeAlias":"programContactsDirectoryIDPhoneToggle","DocumentTypeId":7540,"TemplateId":0,"SortOrder":0,"UrlName":null,"WriterName":null,"CreatorName":null,"WriterId":0,"CreatorId":0,"Path":null,"CreateDate":"0001-01-01T00:00:00","UpdateDate":"0001-01-01T00:00:00","Version":"00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000","Level":0,"Url":"#","directoryID":"52539","hidePhoneNumber":false,"contactsName":"Lauren Devine"},{"Key":"785e6d3c-4dc2-4e47-9f7c-685606bcb068","Id":0,"Name":"55263 Tiffany Salamone","IsDraft":false,"ItemType":0,"DocumentTypeAlias":"programContactsDirectoryIDPhoneToggle","DocumentTypeId":7540,"TemplateId":0,"SortOrder":1,"UrlName":null,"WriterName":null,"CreatorName":null,"WriterId":0,"CreatorId":0,"Path":null,"CreateDate":"0001-01-01T00:00:00","UpdateDate":"0001-01-01T00:00:00","Version":"00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000","Level":0,"Url":"#","directoryID":"55263","hidePhoneNumber":false,"contactsName":"Tiffany Salamone"}],"RCcatalogLink":"[]","RCText":"<p>The Master of Health Administration is a two-year (four semester) program emphasizing the competencies and skills critical for leading in complex health systems and services.  Core courses cover health administration and operations management, health systems leadership, healthcare finance, strategic planning, project management, health policy and health economics, among others.</p>\r\n<h3>MHA Curriculum and Full-Time Plan of Study (Total credits: 45-47)</h3>\r\n<p>Fall (Semester 1)</p>\r\n<ul>\r\n<li><a href=\"http://catalog.wvu.edu/search/?P=PUBH%20610\" data-anchor=\"?P=PUBH%20610\">Contemporary Foundations of Public Health Practice (PUBH 610)</a></li>\r\n<li><a href=\"http://catalog.wvu.edu/search/?search=HPML+623\" data-anchor=\"?search=HPML+623\">Healthcare Finance (PUBH 623)</a></li>\r\n<li><a href=\"http://catalog.wvu.edu/search/?search=PUBH+640\" data-anchor=\"?search=PUBH+640\">Leadership and Collaboration in Public Health (PUBH 640)</a></li>\r\n<li><a href=\"http://catalog.wvu.edu/search/?search=HPML+682\" data-anchor=\"?search=HPML+682\">Managing Quality Improvement in Healthcare (HPML 682)</a></li>\r\n<li><a href=\"http://catalog.wvu.edu/search/?search=HPML+696\" data-anchor=\"?search=HPML+696\">Graduate Seminar: Part 1 (HMPL 696)</a></li>\r\n</ul>\r\n<p>Spring (1)</p>\r\n<ul>\r\n<li><a href=\"http://catalog.wvu.edu/search/?search=HPML+620\" data-anchor=\"?search=HPML+620\">Managing Robust Public Health Organizations (HPML 620)</a></li>\r\n<li><a href=\"http://catalog.wvu.edu/search/?search=hpml+610\" data-anchor=\"?search=hpml+610\">Health Economics for Population Health (HPML 610)</a></li>\r\n<li>Health Services Project Management (HPML 655)</li>\r\n<li>Managerial Epidemiology and Strategy (HPML 656)</li>\r\n<li><a href=\"http://catalog.wvu.edu/search/?search=hpml+696\" data-anchor=\"?search=hpml+696\">Graduate Seminar: Part 2 (HPML 696)</a></li>\r\n</ul>\r\n<p>Summer (1)</p>\r\n<ul>\r\n<li><a href=\"http://catalog.wvu.edu/search/?search=HPML+626\" data-anchor=\"?search=HPML+626\">Internship (HPML 626)</a></li>\r\n</ul>\r\n<p>Fall (2)</p>\r\n<ul>\r\n<li><a href=\"http://catalog.wvu.edu/search/?search=HPML+622\" data-anchor=\"?search=HPML+622\">Analytic Methods for HPML (HPML 622)</a></li>\r\n<li>Prof. Issues in Health Administration: Health Policy (HPML 650)</li>\r\n<li>Prof. Issues in Health Administration: Law and Ethics (HPML 652)</li>\r\n<li>Elective (2-3 credits)</li>\r\n<li><a href=\"http://catalog.wvu.edu/search/?search=hpml+696\" data-anchor=\"?search=hpml+696\">Graduate Seminar: Part 3 (HPML 696)</a></li>\r\n</ul>\r\n<p>Spring (2) </p>\r\n<ul>\r\n<li>Integrative Capstone in Health Administration (HPML 659)</li>\r\n<li>Prof. Issues in Health Administration: Talent and Culture (HPML 653)</li>\r\n<li>Prof. Issues in Health Administration: Health Info. and Management Systems (HPML 654)</li>\r\n<li>Elective (2-3 credits)</li>\r\n<li><a href=\"http://catalog.wvu.edu/search/?search=HPML+696\" data-anchor=\"?search=HPML+696\">Graduate Seminar: Part 4 (HPML 696)</a></li>\r\n</ul>","AGcatalogLink":"[]","addAGLink":"[]","AGText":"<ul>\r\n<li>Baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university with a preferred overall GPA of 3.5, minimum 3.0</li>\r\n<li>TOEFL scores (minimum 550 paper-based) (minimum 213 computer-based) (minimum of 80 internet-based)</li>\r\n<li>Other requirements:\r\n<ul>\r\n<li>Resume</li>\r\n<li>Letters of recommendation (2-3)</li>\r\n<li>Personal statement</li>\r\n</ul>\r\n</li>\r\n</ul>","LGcatalogLink":"[]","LGText":"<p>Students will achieve a specialized set of health administration competencies, including:</p>\r\n<h3><strong>Communication and Relationship Management</strong></h3>\r\n<ul>\r\n<li>Building collaborative relationships</li>\r\n<li>Negotiation and conflict resolution skills</li>\r\n<li>Professional written communications and oral presentations</li>\r\n</ul>\r\n<h3>Leadership Skills</h3>\r\n<ul>\r\n<li>Self- and team-leadership</li>\r\n<li>Promoting and managing change</li>\r\n<li>Evidence-based methods for decision making</li>\r\n</ul>\r\n<h3>Professionalism</h3>\r\n<ul>\r\n<li>Personal and team accountability</li>\r\n<li>Honest and ethical behavior</li>\r\n<li>Community engagement</li>\r\n</ul>\r\n<h3>Knowledge of the Healthcare Environment</h3>\r\n<ul>\r\n<li>Examine critical issues in health systems and services</li>\r\n<li>Articulate the impact of health policies</li>\r\n<li>Explain the major determinants of population health</li>\r\n</ul>\r\n<h3>Healthcare Business and Analytic Skills</h3>\r\n<ul>\r\n<li>Financial and human resources management</li>\r\n<li>Strategic planning and data-driven decision making</li>\r\n<li>Project management</li>\r\n</ul>","featuredProfile":[]}],"profileHometown":"Pittsburgh, Pa.","mainContent":"<h2><span data-contrast=\"auto\">What are some unique or interesting experiences you’ve had during your time as a student at WVU? </span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true}\"> </span></h2>\r\n<p><span data-contrast=\"auto\">Well I had never done online schooling before, so that was unique to begin with! Navigating virtual group work was fascinating, and I’m grateful to have created such great relationships with my classmates even though we haven’t had the chance to meet in person. </span></p>\r\n<p><span data-contrast=\"auto\">One interesting project we did was our capstone report and presentation, where we analyzed and discussed the Community Health Needs Assessments from various years for a nearby healthcare organization, and created thoughtful recommendations aimed at improving population health and quality of life in that area. It was a highly unique learning experience and a great way to close out the program.   </span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true,&quot;335559685&quot;:1440}\"> </span></p>\r\n<h2><span data-contrast=\"auto\">You’re ending your academic journey during a unique time in our history. What has been both good and bad about studying public health and completing your graduate program during a pandemic?</span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true}\"> </span></h2>\r\n<p><span data-contrast=\"auto\">Public health is at the forefront of our minds more than ever, and so I found it to be an extremely motivating time to be learning about how to implement change in healthcare.  It made it easier to stay well-informed throughout the pandemic. However, the pandemic also brought a sense of urgency to the material which can be slightly overwhelming.  Ultimately though, it’s a powerful and honestly essential time to be doing a deep dive into public health, which kept me inspired.  </span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true,&quot;335559685&quot;:1440}\"> </span></p>\r\n<h2><span data-contrast=\"auto\">Tell us about your internship experience. </span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true}\"> </span></h2>\r\n<p><span data-contrast=\"auto\">I had an extremely informative and beneficial internship experience where I was given the opportunity to work with and learn from Associate Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer for WVU Health Sciences, Leslie Miele.  It was an all-virtual experience, and it provided me with a ton of guidance and perspective on career goals and direction.  It was one of my favorite experiences during my time at WVU, and it was highly beneficial in my development as an effective leader in health administration. </span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true,&quot;335559685&quot;:1440}\"> </span></p>\r\n<h2><span data-contrast=\"auto\">What advice would you give to an incoming first-year student in the MHA Online program?  </span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true}\"> </span></h2>\r\n<p><span data-contrast=\"auto\">Get a planner and use it every day!! Keeping track of your assignments and managing your time appropriately is key in succeeding in an online educational environment.  It’s harder to manage class work in a virtual setting so it’s important to stay on top of it. </span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true,&quot;335559685&quot;:1440}\"> </span></p>\r\n<h2><span data-contrast=\"auto\">What do you want to do after graduation? What is your ultimate career goal? </span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true}\"> </span></h2>\r\n<p><span data-contrast=\"auto\">After graduation I plan to go on vacation and take a minute to be proud of this accomplishment! Then I will begin the job search. I plan to seek out employment opportunities where I can best utilize my strengths in thinking critically to develop plans for change.  Both strategic planning and program development are outlets in which I think I can use the skills I’ve mastered in the MHA program.  I really aim to implement positive change and growth in the way our healthcare systems are currently operating, that is really the overarching goal.</span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true,&quot;335559685&quot;:1440}\"> </span></p>\r\n<h2><span data-contrast=\"auto\">What would you tell prospective students about WVU and the School of Public Health? </span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true}\"> </span></h2>\r\n<p><span data-contrast=\"auto\">I would tell prospective students to really take advantage of all the resources and opportunities available to you! WVU and the School of Public Health have so much to offer, so keep reading your emails. Also, get to know your classmates. They will be essential to your success in the program. They are a collection of highly intelligent individuals who can help elevate your educational experience, and they also can provide you a solid support system, so don’t be shy in developing those relationships. </span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true,&quot;335559685&quot;:1440}\"> </span></p>\r\n<h2><span data-contrast=\"auto\">Why should someone choose WVU to study public health? </span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true}\"> </span></h2>\r\n<p><span data-contrast=\"auto\">The <a data-udi=\"umb://document/1d495d643afe46a9aa79f8d326f6288d\" href=\"/students/graduate-programs/master-of-health-administration/\" title=\"Master of Health Administration\">MHA program at WVU</a> is one of the first of its kind in the area and it is being developed by Dr. Erik Carlton, who is widely recognized for directing nationally ranked MHA programs.  His expertise was a large draw to the program for me, and I strongly encourage anyone considering an MHA to apply at WVU.  Public Health at WVU provides access to leading experts in the healthcare industry and gives students the tools to succeed as a leader in the health sector.  </span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true,&quot;335559685&quot;:1440}\"> </span></p>\r\n<h2><span data-contrast=\"auto\">What are you looking forward to most after graduation? </span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true}\"> </span></h2>\r\n<p><span data-contrast=\"auto\">I’m not sure what I will do with all my time!  I am excited to be a better dog mom with the extra hours back in my day.. I see miles and miles of Central Park walks in my future! I’m also very excited to see what comes next in terms of my career development and job-related opportunities.  I’m looking forward to stepping into this industry at a time where passionate leaders are essential, and I’m hopeful to succeed in making impactful change while doing so.</span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true,&quot;335559685&quot;:1440}\"> </span></p>\r\n<h2><span data-contrast=\"auto\">Is there something people would be surprised to learn about you? </span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true}\"> </span></h2>\r\n<p><span data-contrast=\"auto\">I guess the most surprising thing about me as a future healthcare leader is that my background is in musical theater and acting, and I’ve been lucky enough to perform professionally all over the world! </span></p>\r\n<p><span data-contrast=\"auto\">Healthcare leadership and acting have a lot of parallels, surprisingly. My undergraduate professor defined acting as “the study of the human condition.” </span><span data-contrast=\"auto\">Having the ability to empathize with others' stories is key in successful leadership, and that is largely how to begin tackling various characters in musicals/plays as well.</span><span data-ccp-props=\"{&quot;134233117&quot;:true,&quot;134233118&quot;:true,&quot;335559685&quot;:1440}\"> </span></p>"}
Back to Meet the Grads

Michelle Coben

Master of Health Administration (MHA)
School of Public Health

Public health is at the forefront of our minds more than ever, and so I found it to be an extremely motivating time to be learning about how to implement change in healthcare.

What are some unique or interesting experiences you’ve had during your time as a student at WVU?  

Well I had never done online schooling before, so that was unique to begin with! Navigating virtual group work was fascinating, and I’m grateful to have created such great relationships with my classmates even though we haven’t had the chance to meet in person.

One interesting project we did was our capstone report and presentation, where we analyzed and discussed the Community Health Needs Assessments from various years for a nearby healthcare organization, and created thoughtful recommendations aimed at improving population health and quality of life in that area. It was a highly unique learning experience and a great way to close out the program.    

You’re ending your academic journey during a unique time in our history. What has been both good and bad about studying public health and completing your graduate program during a pandemic? 

Public health is at the forefront of our minds more than ever, and so I found it to be an extremely motivating time to be learning about how to implement change in healthcare.  It made it easier to stay well-informed throughout the pandemic. However, the pandemic also brought a sense of urgency to the material which can be slightly overwhelming.  Ultimately though, it’s a powerful and honestly essential time to be doing a deep dive into public health, which kept me inspired.   

Tell us about your internship experience.  

I had an extremely informative and beneficial internship experience where I was given the opportunity to work with and learn from Associate Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer for WVU Health Sciences, Leslie Miele.  It was an all-virtual experience, and it provided me with a ton of guidance and perspective on career goals and direction.  It was one of my favorite experiences during my time at WVU, and it was highly beneficial in my development as an effective leader in health administration.  

What advice would you give to an incoming first-year student in the MHA Online program?   

Get a planner and use it every day!! Keeping track of your assignments and managing your time appropriately is key in succeeding in an online educational environment.  It’s harder to manage class work in a virtual setting so it’s important to stay on top of it.  

What do you want to do after graduation? What is your ultimate career goal?  

After graduation I plan to go on vacation and take a minute to be proud of this accomplishment! Then I will begin the job search. I plan to seek out employment opportunities where I can best utilize my strengths in thinking critically to develop plans for change.  Both strategic planning and program development are outlets in which I think I can use the skills I’ve mastered in the MHA program.  I really aim to implement positive change and growth in the way our healthcare systems are currently operating, that is really the overarching goal. 

What would you tell prospective students about WVU and the School of Public Health?  

I would tell prospective students to really take advantage of all the resources and opportunities available to you! WVU and the School of Public Health have so much to offer, so keep reading your emails. Also, get to know your classmates. They will be essential to your success in the program. They are a collection of highly intelligent individuals who can help elevate your educational experience, and they also can provide you a solid support system, so don’t be shy in developing those relationships.  

Why should someone choose WVU to study public health?  

The MHA program at WVU is one of the first of its kind in the area and it is being developed by Dr. Erik Carlton, who is widely recognized for directing nationally ranked MHA programs.  His expertise was a large draw to the program for me, and I strongly encourage anyone considering an MHA to apply at WVU.  Public Health at WVU provides access to leading experts in the healthcare industry and gives students the tools to succeed as a leader in the health sector.   

What are you looking forward to most after graduation?  

I’m not sure what I will do with all my time!  I am excited to be a better dog mom with the extra hours back in my day.. I see miles and miles of Central Park walks in my future! I’m also very excited to see what comes next in terms of my career development and job-related opportunities.  I’m looking forward to stepping into this industry at a time where passionate leaders are essential, and I’m hopeful to succeed in making impactful change while doing so. 

Is there something people would be surprised to learn about you?  

I guess the most surprising thing about me as a future healthcare leader is that my background is in musical theater and acting, and I’ve been lucky enough to perform professionally all over the world!

Healthcare leadership and acting have a lot of parallels, surprisingly. My undergraduate professor defined acting as “the study of the human condition.” Having the ability to empathize with others' stories is key in successful leadership, and that is largely how to begin tackling various characters in musicals/plays as well. 

Let’s go.