Competition for MHA students focused on improving health of diabetes patients; Arnold School team is among best
December 15, 2011
Three master's degree students in the Arnold School of Public Health each have received a $3,000 prize for earning second place in the 16th annual Everett V. Fox Student Case Competition of the National Association of Health Services Executives.
Sunshine Cobb, Courtney Murray, and Larry Middleton, all in the MHA program of the Arnold School's Department of Health Services Policy and Management, prepared and presented a case to improve the health of diabetes patients in a fictional hospital in Birmingham, Ala.
"The experience of participating in the competition was incredible," said Middleton. "Three weeks prior to the competition, we were given the case and the objectives. From this point, the journey began. Some of the greatest rewards from this experience were the lessons learned. The importance of working as a team was vital."
Murray said that the competition "was probably the hardest thing I've ever done --definitely where this program is concerned. The competition gave us the opportunity to develop a solution, from scratch, to fix a healthcare problem. This was great practice on how to implement innovative strategies to fix common healthcare issues while focusing on financial consequences and quality care."
Dr. Michael Byrd, adviser to the University of South Carolina group, said the students are good ambassadors for the Arnold School and the Department of Health Services Policy and Management.
"The Arnold School MHA program trains leaders and managers for the nation's fastest growing industry," Byrd said. "To finish in second place among 22 of the top MHA programs in the United States shows the quality of our program and our students."
Other teams in the top five represented Rush University in Chicago (first place), Texas A&M University (third), Cornell University (fourth), and George Washington University (fifth).
The Everett V. Fox Student Case Competition is designed to give first- and second-year graduate students an educational experience to enhance their problem analysis and presentation skills. Students are charged with applying their creativity, knowledge and experience to analyze the real and diverse issues facing a healthcare organization.
The National Association of Health Services Executives (NAHSE) is a nonprofit association of black healthcare executives. The association was founded in 1968 for the purpose of promoting the advancement and development of black healthcare leaders and elevating the quality of healthcare services for minority and underserved communities.
Since its inception, NAHSE has sponsored and participated in local and national programs and projects designed to improve quality, access and availability to health services and to expand educational opportunities in the field of health services administration.