Butler University to add new major


Butler University added a Healthcare and Business Major that will launch this fall. Through this major, students will get a better understanding of how the business side of healthcare works.

The Healthcare and Business major is a four-year degree that combines the general health care related coursework and basic business courses that are specific to the business of healthcare.

Director of Undergraduate Health Science Programs, Dr. Amy Peak, feels that this program is one that is not often available at the undergraduate level.

“I think there’s a need. There’s a lot of graduate level programs that marry the concept of healthcare and business, but I think that there’s a real void in undergraduate preparation that really blends the two nicely,” Peak said.

Courtney Droms, Associate Professor of Marketing, will be teaching a Healthcare Marketing class where students will learn how to market health services and how customers perceive the marketing efforts.

“Students will walk away from this class with a deeper understanding of how strategic marketing decisions are made by [the] companies that operate in the health and healthcare arenas,” Droms said.

Associate Professor of Health Sciences, Brenda Quincy, will be teaching Healthcare Biostatistics which will give students a statistical foundation if they are interested in conducting their own research.

The goal is to provide a good basis for students to read and interpret findings in the healthcare literature,” Quincy said.

Peak explained that when they send students out into the field to shadow professionals, they have students ask questions about what professionals wish they would have learned more about in college. The answer is usually related to the business side of the field, like dealing with insurance companies or understanding the Affordable Care Act.

Peak has met with 20 on-campus students who are interested in changing their major. She has 10 deposits from high school students that enroll as Healthcare Business majors next year.

First-year student, Phoebe Wingstrom, is a currently a Management Information Systems major, but is switching to Healthcare and Business to help her acquire the necessary skills to to run her own nursing home one day.

“I am hoping to get a better understanding for the healthcare field while still learning the skills that the College of Business has provided me with thus far,” Wingstrom said.

Butler offers a Healthcare Management minor, but Peak explained that the minor “Only offers business-related coursework, so there is none of the Health Care course work covered.”

After students graduate with this degree, they can often find work with health insurance companies, medical device companies, pharmaceutical manufacturers or medical communications companies.

Peak explained that students can also use their degree to go on to graduate school and get an MBA, Masters of Public Health or Healthcare Administration.

“If I was a student coming into a place like Butler and I wanted to go to medical school, this would probably be my undergraduate degree of choice because if would help set you apart,” Peak said.

Peak hopes that this program will gain popularity and attract future students.

“People know about our Business school and our Pharmacy and PA program, but my hope is that 5 or 10 years from now they also know about us from combining those two things together,” Peak said.  


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