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Shaping the future: University students explore careers in healthcare administration


Adventist Health is providing a variety of opportunities to help prepare the next generation of healthcare business leaders. Experiences include student internships, a leadership residency program, and a university class in healthcare administration.

The new class, Introduction to Healthcare Administration, is offered at La Sierra University, Pacific Union College, and Walla Walla University. The class provides opportunities for students to obtain personal career insights from Adventist Health leaders and engage in conversation on a variety of subjects related to healthcare administration. Each class features a presentation by a different Adventist Health executive and time for students to ask questions.

“Adventist Health is looking for bright, young, mission-driven students to come work for us,” says Alex Bryan, chief mission officer for Adventist Health and co-instructor for the class. “This class is an opportunity for students to step up and say, ‘I want to make a difference in the world. I want to use my particular skills to love people who are hurting, to heal people who are sick, to bring hope to people who find they have no hope.’”

Building a pipeline of future healthcare leaders who are aligned with Adventist Health values is an important strategy for Adventist Health. This class provides students with the opportunity to learn about the business side of healthcare and the significance of being a leader for a faith-based healthcare organization.

Topics covered include finance, operations, human resources, marketing, communication, mission integration, spiritual care in a healthcare setting, and more. Twenty-five Adventist Health executives and leaders from across the organization have presented for the class during the last two years.

The interactive class format is supplemented with readings from books and news articles about healthcare finance, public health policy, issues in human resources, and more. The class also provides an overview of the history of Adventist Health, its roots in the Adventist Church, and the unique mission of the company.

“The class gives students an inside look into Adventist Health and the American healthcare system as a whole. Students have opportunities to receive career and leadership advice that will last a lifetime,” says Brendan Collins, co-instructor for the class.

More than 100 students have taken the class during the past two years with several students receiving internships and residencies at Adventist Health.

“With healthcare comprising almost 20% of the American economy, there is no shortage of roles and career opportunities within the industry,” says Collins. “Our goal is to give every student who takes the course an inside look into our organization and to help them realize there are endless opportunities for careers not just in the clinical space but in healthcare administration as well. We want students to recognize that working at Adventist Health is an opportunity to be part of something more than just a day-job. It is a calling to be part of the transformational healing ministry of Jesus.”

To learn more about the class, contact Brendan Collins at