MSHCA Graduates Keep Up with Rapid Changes in Healthcare
The U.S. healthcare industry is in a constant and rapid state of flux—from laws and regulations like the Affordable Care Act, to continuous improvements in technology and coverage plans. It can be challenging to keep up with these changes, even for experienced professionals.
Ihab Abumuhor and Bon Latif are two of those professionals. For Latif, who manages a dental office in Laguna Niguel, it’s essential to understand the latest healthcare developments. Even Abumuhor, who had been working in healthcare for over 20 years and completed his first master’s degree in 2000, so much had changed in the past two decades that he still felt he needed further education to take his career to the next level.
For both of them, the Master of Health Care Administration (MSHCA) degree program at CSULB provided an affordable and flexible opportunity to go back to school while maintaining full-time jobs and raising families. The fact that the MSHCA program is accredited by the nationwide Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education finalized their decisions.
“I chose CSULB because the MSHCA program was accredited, which differentiated it from other graduate programs,” explained Abumuhor. “I equated accreditation with quality.”
He also appreciated the MSHCA program’s schedule of online and Saturday classes, since he worked late hours Monday through Friday, and also has three young kids at home. In addition, the small class sizes allowed students to support each other through the challenging curriculum.
“Our cohort became like family,” said Abumuhor, who graduated in 2019. “We still hang out and meet for brunch and happy hours. The connection doesn’t end with the program, it continues for many years after.”
“The program had a great impact,” agreed Latif, “not only on me personally, but also on the majority of the students who were enrolled in it. I remember on a weekly basis, we heard about fellow students being promoted to a higher job position, or moving on to another healthcare facility for better opportunities.”
Latif did so well that, immediately after graduation, she was asked to return to co-teach the course in Quantitative Methods in Health Care Management. Abumuhor looks forward to teaching at the graduate level as well. In the meantime, his career as an Associate Director of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center has been enhanced beyond his regular daily responsibilities. He now collaborates on research projects, mentors staff, and speaks on specialized topics at national medical conferences.
“The MSHCA program positioned me for the next management-level position,” said Abumuhor. “Most of the executive directors and VPs at my hospital have a specific type of master’s degree, and this is one of the reasons I came to CSULB.
While Latif continues to manage the Laguna Dental office, she is also job-hunting for an upper-management position.
“If it wasn’t for the MSHCA program knowledge,” she explained, “I don’t think that I would have been ready to do such thing.”