College of Science, Health & the Environment

MSUM online programs meet needs of students, community

Karissa LaMont, senior, communication studies

In a changing world where everyone seems to have a never-ending to-do list, it is hard to imagine making time for anything else. Minnesota State University Moorhead wants to meet students where they are at, no matter what walk of life they are in. How can one fit college classes into an already busy lifestyle? The answer is found online.

MSU Moorhead’s undergraduate online Health Services Administration degree is designed for students interested in the managerial side of hospitals, acute care organizations, public health and senior support services. Starting Spring 2019, the Health Services Administration program will be offered completely online better to serve the needs of students and the community.

“One of the key reasons why we decided to go online was our promises toward non-traditional students,” said Jitendra Singh, associate professor and coordinator of the Health Services Administration program. “You can manage the program but still have time for your family or full-time job.”

The ease of online programs has made them highly functional. Even without face-to-face interaction, professors like Singh ensure online students get the same experiences and learning opportunities as on-campus students.

Technology such as Adobe Connect allows online students to have discussions and complete assignments in teams just as they might do in on-campus classes. Online chat sessions, webinars and advising sessions still allow students to interact with their professors as well.

MSU Moorhead alumnus Tony Santos ’18 (health services administration) took hybrid or online classes, which he preferred over on-campus classes because of their flexibility and convenience. That wasn’t the only reason Santos enjoyed the program.

“The faculty members of this program are known to go the extra mile in helping students find opportunities that allow them to showcase their knowledge and skills,” Santos said. “I was able to take part in a lot of neat opportunities throughout my undergraduate experience that supported my goals as an aspiring healthcare professional.”

Justin Boldt ’18 (health services administration) also likes the way classes are structured in the Health Services Administration program.

“With online classes, you have the same number of hours of coursework, but you are able to schedule those hours where it is most practical for you,” Boldt said. “I was working 80 hours a week and online classes made going to school more convenient.”

In addition to the new online Health Services Administration program, an online Addiction Counseling certificate opened for students in Fall 2018. This year-long program is open to anyone with a bachelor’s or master’s degree who wants to get licensed as an addiction counselor in Minnesota or North Dakota.

“This certificate allows us to reach students who reside in rural areas and are seeking to become licensed counselors,” said Ken Messina, assistant professor and Counseling program coordinator. “We also have students from as far as Washington, Florida and North Carolina in our certificate program.”

Carrie Uriell-Unruh ’05 (social work) is currently enrolled in the Addiction Counseling certificate program at MSU Moorhead. As a commuting student from Wahpeton, N.D., Uriell-Unruh appreciates how the program is structured.

“MSUM is allowing me to achieve my career goals without hindering my present lifestyle,” Uriell-Unruh said. “Taking online classes is cost and time effective. I’m able to maintain a full-time job while I work on my studies.”

Uriell-Unruh also noted the hybrid opportunities that come with the Addiction Counseling certificate program.

“I get to have face-to-face interaction with my peers and instructor without having to attend class every day. As a commuting student, this reduces my travel time so I can focus more on the subject matter,” Uriell-Unruh said. “I prefer the hybrid classes because you get to experience both online and traditional class lectures, which is the best of both worlds.”

MSUM’s online undergraduate and graduate programs allow you to learn at the pace that fits your lifestyle. This opens a door for students who originally did not see college as a possibility. Online and hybrid courses help students and fulfill MSUM’s promise of being indispensable to the community.

Ready to take the next step toward your career goals? Learn how you can further your education through one of MSUM’s many online programs. Visit today.