Burke Wilson knew he was on track for future promotions in healthcare leadership, when he decided to pursue his Executive MBA in Healthcare Management at Creighton University. Before graduating from the program, he became the assistant director of value-based care at Texas Children’s Pediatrics in Houston.
In his role, Wilson implements improved pediatric primary care practices, negotiates payer contracts, leverages data to make effective management decisions and works with physicians on quality improvement projects.
Before moving into formal leadership, Wilson’s background consisted of a doctorate in physical therapy and primarily clinical experience, where many of his leadership responsibilities were centered on making clinical decisions. When he transitioned out of a clinical role, he knew he needed to increase his business acumen and decided to research MBA programs across the country to better set himself up for success.
The Draw to Creighton’s Executive MBA Program
Wilson was drawn to Creighton University’s Executive MBA program primarily because of the program’s diverse faculty and cohort of students. The cohort Wilson was part of had healthcare leaders from a range of professional backgrounds, from dentistry to anesthesiology.
“We had really nice diversity [in the cohort], as well as in our instructors and professors.” Wilson said.
Another key factor was the structure of the Executive MBA program. The hybrid structure (which includes four, four-day on-campus residencies) made it possible to strike a balance between not only work and education, but also family life.
Additionally, Creighton’s Healthcare Executive Education is AACSB accredited, and on the path to gaining CAHME accreditation in 2021, which Wilson says was another factor in his decision.
Applying Classwork to Real-World Events
Wilson found the work he was doing in the EMBA program to be very useful in his everyday life at work and even referred to it as “Monday Morning Relevance.”
“I was engaged with the curriculum throughout the semester and then applied it on Monday morning when I got to my job,” he said. “I think that the opportunity to apply what I was learning really reinforced the lessons.”
Hybrid Structure of the Program Offers Unique Value
The hybrid structure of the Executive MBA program offers students the opportunity for flexibility in their education, while also building relationships and creating networks in person.
Wilson says the leadership development he went through during his first in-person residency, which included an evaluation of thinking styles, was particularly salient.
“It really gave me clarity into how I might apply this in my current role as I work with my team, and how I can maybe interact with a colleague differently because I understand the way they think,” he said. “This activity laid the foundation for the rest of the program.”
The first in-person residency was also key in building relationships and making connections with other cohort members. While Wilson had some reservations about the online portions of the program, being able to put faces to names while on campus was valuable when it came to the remote work. Chatting on conference calls with other members of the cohort felt almost like being in the same room. Overall, the hybrid cohort structure was an integral part of his education.
“Your cohort is really going to make your program. Your faculty is going to add value, and then the curriculum is going to support all of that,” he said.
Finding the Right Balance
Like most students, maintaining a balance in his personal life was a challenge for Wilson. However, the rhythm and flexibility of the program as well as support of the cohort itself made it more manageable.
“They realize we’re adult learners. We have busy families, demanding day jobs and other responsibilities,” said Wilson. “You strike a cadence in life that allows you to fit coursework into appropriate places in both your professional and personal schedules, and other students in the cohort do the same.”
Overall, for Wilson, choosing to pursue his Executive MBA in Healthcare Management at Creighton was an enriching experience thanks to faculty, program leaders and the members of his cohort.
“I really feel like I could not have selected a better program for myself,” he says. “The hybrid structure gave me the flexibility I needed, so I could have minimal interruptions from my work and family, but also still get a quality education.”
Learn more about the Executive MBA in Healthcare Management.