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Every piece of the MHA experience - from team-based activities in a curated cohort, to real-world applications of classroom learning, connections with executive alumni leaders, opportunities for innovation, rigorous self-reflection, individualized coaching – is all designed to give you a depth and breadth of healthcare knowledge that spans from the system to the individual, from finance to operations, to strategy, marketing and beyond. We prepare students for the healthcare system of the future.

Our Curriculum

The UNC MHA curriculum is designed to create the next generation of healthcare leaders. In the first year, students immerse themselves in healthcare as a system and how the fundamentals of healthcare business - accounting, operations, strategy, data analysis, and leadership - come together to create the healthcare system as we know it. After a summer internship of applied learning, students return in the second year to apply their learnings and expand their healthcare expertise through a deep dive into health economics, law, human resources, and finance – culminating in an applied Capstone experience. 

Philosophy of Teaching

UNC MHA professors have high standards and are eager to support you in reaching them. Professors create a welcoming and engaging classroom environment through targeted lectures, guest speakers, case studies, team exercises, and applied scenarios. All of these experiences are scaffolded to take you from an emerging conceptual understanding of a discipline to a practice-ready level of mastery.

Philosophy of Grading

While grading is a fundamental part of monitoring your progress in the program, it is certainly not the most important part of your program experience. As part of that commitment to the learning process, the UNC MHA does not assign letter grades and instead aligns with the UNC Graduate School grading policy which assigns grades using the following scale:

• High Pass (H)

• Pass (P)

• Low Pass (L)

• Fail (F)

Dual Degrees and Certificates

If you are looking to specialize your graduate school experience, the UNC MHA has dual degree and certificate options to help you create the learning path that is right for you. Below are the dual-degree and certificate possibilities with an MHA and some potential career paths that could result from each program.

MHA Degrees and Certificates

Partnering School: UNC Kenan-Flagler Partnering School
Time to Completion: 3 Years
Potential Career Paths:
• Venture capital in healthcare
• Investment banking in healthcare
• Pharmaceutical innovation management
• Cross-industry consulting
Partnering School: UNC School of Information and Library Science
Time to Completion: 3 Years
Sample Plan of Study (PDF)
Potential Career Paths:
• Health informatics professionals
• Health data analysts

Partnering School: UNC School of Information and Library Science
Time to Completion: 3 Years
Potential Career Paths:
• Health informatics professionals
• Health data analysts

Certificate of Community Preparedness and Disaster Management
Partnering School: UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health
Time to Completion: Concurrent with 2-year program
Potential Career Paths:
• Applicable to any career path

Graduate Certificate in Public Health Informatics
Partnering School:  UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health
Time to Completion: Concurrent with 2-year program
Potential Career Paths:
• Health data analysts
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Admissions and Applications

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Admissions Requirements
• Minimum requirements necessary for application to Residential Master’s Programs:
• An undergraduate degree with a Grade Point Average (GPA) of 3.0 or higher (4.0 grading scale)
• Virtual interview for selected applicants.

International applicants are required to submit a Financial Certificate.

Preferred Requirements:
• Relevant work experience that demonstrates a commitment to healthcare.
• Applicants are advised to prepare in microeconomics, accounting, and statistics.

Application Deadlines:
•Click this link to see an updated list of application deadlines.

Required Application Materials
•Completion of online Graduate School application. Applications for the next academic year are available in August.
•Nonrefundable application fee. In some instances the application fee may be waived; please see the Graduate School’s Application Fee Waiver page for information on eligibility.
•Transcripts. One complete (not selected courses), unofficial transcript from each university attended must be uploaded within the application. If offered admission, one paper official transcript for each university attended will be required. If you have questions or need more information about preparing transcripts, please see the Graduate School’s transcript information here.
•Three recommenders and their email addresses. These will be collected within the Graduate School application.
•Personal statement. Within the Graduate School application, please upload a two page, double-spaced statement addressing the following:
     • How will your lived experiences and strengths contribute to a positive learning environment?
     • What is your experience working in teams and what can you contribute to a team?
     • How will your lived experiences and strengths contribute to a positive learning environment?
     • Please provide any additional information that will help us to evaluate your application.

• The GRE is not required, and scores will not be reviewed if they are submitted.
International Students
In addition to the materials above, international students must submit TOEFL or IELTS score that are no more than 2 years old. To submit, use UNC’s institution code: #5816. For more information about these tests, see the Graduate School’s TOEFL and IELTS instruction page.

Check your Application Status 
• You may monitor the status of your application by logging into your account and following the instructions. 

  • Prospective Student Information 
    • Click here to see additional information for prospective students, from the UNC Graduate School.

    Admitted Students Information 
    • Admitted students can click here for relevant resources and important action items they’ll need to address before arriving in Chapel Hill.
  • FAQs

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    How many credits can I register for each semester?
    A minimum of 9 hours is required for a full-time student and the maximum is 16 hours. Overload requests must be approved by the Residential Master's Program Director.
    Can I receive credit towards my degree for courses taken at another university while I am enrolled at UNC?
    Yes, under certain circumstances. Students registered for at least three credit hours at UNC-Chapel Hill may take and recoup credit for a maximum of two graduate-level courses (during a fall or spring term) or a maximum of one graduate-level course during a summer term at the following schools:
    • UNC-Greensboro
    • Duke University
    • UNC-Charlotte
    • North Carolina Central University
    • North Carolina State University
    A student must complete a “Request for Inter-Institutional Registration” form from the University Registrar's office. A student’s advisor must sign the form certifying certain qualifications. More information on Interinstitutional Registration is available here.
    Can credits or grades transfer from other institutions?
    Yes. Graduate students can transfer up to 20% of the credits required for the degree, subject to approval of the program and the Graduate School.
    What grades are assigned for graduate courses?
    The university uses a nontraditional grading scheme for graduate programs:
    • H = High Pass
    • P = Pass
    • L = Low Pass
    • F = Fail
    • F = Fail, administratively assigned
    • S = Satisfactory progress on research course, field training, thesis, and master’s paper
    • IN = Work incomplete (automatically becomes an F• within 12 months)
    • AB = Absent from final examination (automatically becomes an F• within 12 months)

    Can I calculate a grade point average?
    No official grade point average is calculated. However, an “internal” grade point average and class ranking is determined by the department solely for nominations to Delta Omega, the Public Health Honorary Society.
    What grade do I need to maintain eligibility?
    To pass a course, a student must receive at least a low pass (L) grade. No grade falling below an L is counted for graduate credit. A student who receives an F, or nine semester hours of L is ineligible to continue graduate study.
    Do withdrawals show up on my transcript?
    Not if you drop the class prior to the “last day for drops,” as established by the University Registrar – which is generally prior to the last two weeks of the semester. If you withdraw after the drop date, a W is displayed on your transcript. NOTE: Single course withdrawal (drop) differs from withdrawing from the University, which is required when ALL classes are dropped.

    What can I expect when I graduate from the residential Master’s Program?
    For experienced health care managers, the expected outcome of the program is advancement to a position with greater management responsibility. For those with more limited management experience, the intended outcome is a responsible health care management position; many students prefer to begin with a fellowship experience.
    What is it like to live in Chapel Hill? Try one of these links for more information:
    Where can I learn more about housing in the area?
    Try one of these links for housing information:
    How can I get around Chapel Hill?
    The bus system in Chapel Hill and Carrboro is convenient and free. For its schedule, as well as the schedule for the GoTriangle (e.g., bus to Raleigh, Durham, Research Triangle Park, or the airport), please check the following web sites:
    Why should I establish North Carolina residency and how should I do that?
    If you attend UNC, it is important that United States citizens (and those green-card holding permanent residents) establish North Carolina residency for tuition purposes as soon as possible. Becoming a North Carolina citizen will significantly reduce your cost of tuition. To do so, you will first need to:
    • Obtain a North Carolina driver’s license
    • Register your car in North Carolina
    • Register to vote in North Carolina
    PLEASE NOTE: All of the above actions need to be done immediately upon arrival in Chapel Hill. These actions do NOT,  however, guarantee your classification as a North Carolina resident. You must submit a residency application. Detailed information is available at the University Registrar website.
    What support is available for international students?
    Students are required to check in at the University's International Student and Scholar Services before classes begin. The Center provides resources and support for international students and their families.
    Don't see an answer to your question here?
    Contact Residential Master's Program Academic Coordinator: Yolonda Childs

    Mailing Address Department of Health Policy and Management School of Public Health CB# 7411, 120 Rosenau Hall University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7411

    What is the most recent retention rate for this program?
    The 2022 Retention rate for the Residential MHA: 100%
    What is the graduation rate for the program?
    The 2023 Graduation rate for the Residential MHA: 95%
    Can I see a student handbook that includes a sample plan of study for the program?
    Yes, the student handbook can be found here.
    Student Ambassadors

    Afham Chotani

    Hi!! My name is Afham Chotani, MHA Class of 2024, and I am from Great Falls, VA! Other than hospital operations, and quality improvement, my interests in healthcare are the well-being of patients and ensuring their voice is heard. In my spare time, I like to build Legos, be a little adventurous, and hang out with my wife!

    Our Mission, Vision and Values
    Department Values
    Awards and Funding

    Students fund their education through a combination of sources including loans, fellowships and awards, assistantships and grants. Several.awards and scholarships are supported by generous contributions from donors to the School and University who value the current and future contributions of our students.

    • UNC’s MHA program has among the lowest per-credit costs of any peer program. As you consider offers from other schools, think through the following:
      • What would be the total tuition cost for each program I’m considering given their tuition rate and the number of credit hours required?
      • Does each program I’m considering charge a flat-tuition rate for full-time graduate students? UNC charges full-time graduate students for 9-credit hours per semester, whether they take 9 or 16 credit hours in that term.
      • What is the cost-of-living differential between the programs I’m considering? UNC’s Graduate School provides this page for cost references.
    Leadership, Entrepreneurship, and Innovation @ Gillings
    Leadership, Entrepreneurship, & Innovation (LEI) are at the core of what we do at Gillings. Through rigorous team-based project work and applied learning experiences, MHAs graduate with a deep understanding of the complexities of healthcare and the skills necessary to lead and innovate from day one. For students looking to take their leadership to the next level, Gillings offers an array of opportunities, as does the broader UNC community. From cross-discipline innovation teams, to pitch competitions, to start-up accelerators, to case competitions, and more, no one does LEI better than Gillings. Learn More about Leadership, Innovation, & Entrepreneurship @ Gillings
    Innovation and Entrepreneurship: Classes and Programs
    Innovation and Entrepreneurship: New Ventures
    Gillings Innovation Labs

    Unsure if the MHA is the right degree for you?

    Check out this resource to compare degree programs

    Our Numbers
    Years of developing healthcare leaders
    Current HPM Alumni
    Ranking in US News and World Report
    Department of Health Policy & Management ranking in US News and World Report

    Career Opportunities

    Our Graduates Work As
    Administrative Fellows
    Healthcare Analysts
    Healthcare Consultants
    Hospital Administrators
    Healthcare Strategists
    Our Graduates Work With
    Health systems
    Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs)

    Support Our Department

    At this pivotal time, we call on our alumni and friends to support us as we work to empower a new generation of transformative leaders who will build the healthcare system of the future. Support students directly in going to conferences.

    BSPH, MSPH and Resident MHA:
    Academic Coordinator: Yolonda N. Childs

    Doctoral and Executive MHA:
    Academic Coordinator: Kim Sieler

    Assistant to Chair: Stephanie Forman
    Looking for someone else?

    Mailing Address
    135 Dauer Drive
    1101 McGavran-Greenberg Hall, CB #7411
    Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7411