MHA - Frequently Asked Questions

What do I have to submit when applying to the MHA program?

A complete application to the MHA program includes the following items:

  • The GVSU graduate application form and application fee
  • An official transcript from each undergraduate and graduate institution you have attended
  • A short essay on your educational and career objectives, and how attaining an MHA from GVSU will help achieve your objectives (250 to 750 words)
  • Your up-to-date resume
  • Three references from people who can describe your work and potential for the program, such as professors or work supervisors
  • International applications should include official English language test score documentation with the following minimum scores: TOEFL: 80, IELTS: 6.5, and PTE: 53, or Duolingo: 105
  • International applications must also include verification of financial support
  • We accept standard graduate test scores (such as the GRE), but they are not required

What undergraduate degree(s) are accepted for the MHA?

We accept students from any undergraduate or graduate degree program.

Are there special requirements for admission (other than the university standard of 3.0 GPA)?

Applicants must submit three letters of recommendation and a short essay regarding their career goals and how the GVSU MHA program will help them reach those goals.


If I don’t have a 3.0 GPA at the undergraduate level, can I still get admitted?

Yes, it is possible, though it is best if your GPA was at least 2.8 and you are a US citizen or resident. If your undergraduate GPA was under 3.0, we will consider different factors and you may be admitted with a conditional status. As a conditional student, you will be required to take certain courses with a lighter load and complete all with a minimum 3.0 GPA for those courses. Factors we consider include the pattern of low grades (certain course topics or time period) and evidence of professional growth. If you have a lower GPA, we recommend that you meet with the MHA program director to discuss your particular situation. Note that we are unable to admit international applicants with conditional status, so international applications with GPAs under 3.0 are unlikely to be approved.

What are the deadlines for application?

We accept applications for Fall and Winter starts. The Fall start deadline is June 30. The Winter start deadline is October 15. Exceptions may be made on an individual basis.


How long does it take to get an admission decision?

Admission reviews occur on a rolling basis and typically take 1-2 weeks.


What types of careers can I pursue with this degree?

The majority of recent graduates obtain positions in healthcare organizations in administrative and management positions, including Practice Manager, Nursing Home Administrator, Compliance Officer, Talent Acquisition Analyst, Risk Management Analyst, Product Manager, and more. Types of organizations where our alumni work include hospitals, health plans, pharmaceutical companies, clinical practice groups, community clinics, and others.

Why choose this program instead of a different degree, such as an MBA, MPH, MPA, or MSN?

While healthcare leaders have completed different degrees, the MHA is the most common and recognized degree for healthcare management and executive positions nationwide. In comparison to MBA and MPA degrees, an MHA provides more healthcare-specific content. In comparison to MPH and MSN degrees, an MHA provides more management content. The MHA is designed to prepare students to work in a variety of healthcare settings in management and leadership positions. We have a number of alumni with clinical backgrounds, such as nurses, who moved into management roles within their organizations, sometimes before completing the MHA.

How long does it take to complete this degree?

The program is 6 semesters. Students attending full-time (9 credits per semester) in fall, winter, and spring/summer semesters can complete the program in 2 years.

Can I pursue this degree fully online?

Currently our program is in hybrid format, with courses including a combination of in-person meetings and online coursework. We are exploring a fully online option.



Can you help me fund my degree (assistantships, scholarships)?

To learn about scholarships, please visit the

GVSU Scholarship page

Many graduate assistantships are posted on the

Graduate School website

The department has a limited number of graduate assistantships available. The application form and process are available on our 

Department website

When are classes held?

Most courses are held on weekday evenings from 6:00 PM until 8:50 PM. A few courses meet every other Saturday morning. This schedule accommodates most working students.

Can I work full-time while I complete this degree?

Yes. About half of current students work full-time.

Will my professors allow me to miss classes due to work or family emergencies?

We recognize that work and family obligations can sometime conflict with class attendance. Class attendance requirements are set by individual course professors. If you must miss class due to an external obligation, it is important to notify your professor ahead of time to discuss expectations for that course.


What are some important things to know about this program?

Our MHA program has a number of strengths:

  • CAHME accreditation—ensures we meet industry standards for high quality health administration graduate education. Our program is one of only 3 CAHME-accredited health administration graduate degrees in Michigan
  • Executive-in-Residence—a former health system executive teaches courses, advises students, and provides professional guidance to students
  • Flexibility—we do not require students to complete the program full-time, and allow students to switch between full-time and part-time study as needed
  • Field-based projects—several courses require completion of projects for local organizations, allowing students to get a feel for how implementation happens in real work settings and at different organizations
  • Health Professions Graduate Student Alliance—is our graduate student organization and the student chapter for the Great Lakes Chapter of the American College of Healthcare Executives. The organization provides networking opportunities with local healthcare leaders, leadership opportunities, and financial support for conference travel
  • The number of internships required is based on your healthcare work experience. Those new to the field complete 2 internships, those with just a few years of experience complete 1, and those with 6 or more years of experience are able to waive both internships. Internships are important means to provide different types of professional experiences and to build students’ professional networks.

Can I start my program in Fall, Winter, or Summer semesters?

Students may start the program in Fall (August) or Winter (January). We do not allow starting the program in the spring/summer semester.

What if I can only take one or two classes a semester – is that allowed?

Yes, many of our students who work full-time complete one or two courses at a time. Students have up to 8 years to complete the degree.

Page last modified August 10, 2022