In Praise of Great Teachers

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE

What follows are remarks I wrote to mark the retirement for Michael D. Rosko, PhD, a professor of Healthcare Management at Widener University. I had the honor of being one of Mike’s students. I share these comments not only to honor Mike, but to honor all those teachers in CAHME-accredited programs who fulfill so honorably their awesome responsibility of shaping the future leaders of healthcare.

Talking about an icon like Mike Rosko could easily include the number of students he taught, the number of papers he published, or the honors attained.   Mike is an economist, so numbers are important. As a teacher, however, Mike is far more than numbers.

To me, a teacher is someone who pulls out something inside of you that you didn’t even know existed.  Someone who alters your perspective to see things that you didn’t know were there. Someone who makes you not a replica of themselves, but into a better a better version of yourself.

I remember being at Widener sometime in my 20s and thinking about who I considered my favorite teachers.  There was my fourth-grade teacher, Miss Valenti, who made learning fun. There was Father Rodia in high school, teaching a course on Christian morality that helped me understand that actions had consequences not just to others, but to myself. As a college undergrad, Ray Birdwhistle opened my mind to how communication serves not just to convey ideas but also as a form of social interaction.

And then there was Mike Rosko.

Mike’s lessons in economics revealed the true nature of healthcare.  Healthcare is not just supply and demand, elasticity of demand, logarithmic curves, and scenario

Michael D. Rosko, PhD: professor, teacher, friend.

analysis.  Mike made healthcare real and enabled his students to understand the humanity behind the numbers.

Let me give you one example.  Back in the 1980s, Widener’s healthcare management program brought in a computer simulation exercise that allowed us students to made decisions as if we were hospital administrators.  We had to market, attract key populations, set our charges, adjust our costs, and manage our resources as a hospital administrator.  Well, being a pretty “smart” guy, I figured out how my hospital could make a lot of money.  I raised charges, stopped taking Medicaid, decreased staffing costs, and dropped costly service lines.  At the end of the exercise, my hospital made the most money. 

Mike gave me an F. What? I made the most money in the class! I won, right? 

Mike looked at me with gentle disdain. This is healthcare. It’s not just about making money. It’s about caring for people.  Being a just person, Mike allowed me to re-work my project, and I brought my F up to a C+. More important that the grade, I learned the lesson. 

The world needs more teachers like Mike Rosko, someone who reminds future (and current) leaders that healthcare is not all about making money.  It is about our humanity.  It is about morality.  It is about making a difference.

 

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE
President & CEO
CAHME

Students at the Center

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE

While attending the Ohio State University healthcare case competition last week, I was struck by the intellect, discipline, and energy of the student competitors. And just as remarkable as the competitors: the OSU students who organized the entire event. From conception to organization to execution, the OSU case competition was a testament to the tremendous pool of talent from which our future healthcare leaders are rising. Congratulations to the team from the University of Michigan for their first-place prize in the competition!

The first place finishing team from the University of Michigan, from left: Chanell Cook, Esha Kamath, and Rebecca Cray. The case competition asked students to develop strategies for addressing diabetes in communities around Columbus, Ohio.

I find this rewarding because it confirms the importance of CAHME’s work to make sure students receive a top-notch education in graduate healthcare management. Case competitions at CAHME-accredited programs like OSU are just part of that equation. More recently, CAHME has established two scholarships to recognize and help support students in their pursuit of careers in healthcare management.

The CAHME – Dawn Gideon Foundation Scholarship honors Dawn Gideon by identifying potential leaders who embody the skills, imagination, commitment, and compassion that Dawn possessed in service to communities in need. Dawn was herself a graduate of the CAHME-accredited University of Pittsburgh program. The other scholarship honors a former CAHME Board member, Tim Campbell. The CAHME – Tim Campbell Scholarship supports students who reflect Tim’s commitment to service and volunteerism. Both scholarships are open only to students from CAHME-accredited programs, and are nominated by their program directors. The deadline for this year’s applications is May 25, 2018.

OSU student organizers of the case competition, from left: (back row) Thomas Baldauf, Lizzy Johnsen, Alaina Stewart, Stefany Mayhew, Amanda Stopek and (front row) Reed Franklin, Sarah Ryan, Jahnna Lydic, Esther Olsen, Sara Butauski.

At CAHME, we like to talk about our mission of advancing the quality of graduate healthcare management education. Achieving this mission is a cooperative effort involving academic institutions, healthcare organizations and businesses, and CAHME.  Having resources such as case competitions and scholarships available for students gives me confidence that these future leaders of healthcare will make a difference.

President & CEO
CAHME

Benchmarking and Mentorship Encourage Quality Improvement; New Scholarships Announced

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE

CAHME is pleased to announce three new initiatives underway this Spring: The CAHME Mentorship Circle (CMC), Enhanced Benchmarking, and, to comply with CHEA standards, the addition of program data available on the CAHME website.

The CAHME Mentorship Circle (CMC) designation will recognize CAHME accredited programs that demonstrate a commitment to excellence not only to their own programs, but across the broader field of graduate healthcare management education. CMC-designated programs will engage in mentorship, best practice dissemination, and other activities that support CAHME’s mission to advance the quality of graduate healthcare management education. The deadline for initial applications is April 16, 2018, and a second application deadline is scheduled for September 1, 2018.

CAHME Enhanced Benchmarking is intended to be a resource for programs pursuing continuous quality improvement. Enhanced Benchmarking includes two distinct aspects: the ability to access and compare limited site visit report information (which includes self-study information), and the ability to access and compare annual report data.  This capability enables CAHME -accredited programs that share their data to review data from other programs that also share their data. Participation in Enhanced Benchmarking is one of the requirements for achieving Mentorship Circle designation.  Programs should sign up to activate this capability offered through the eAccreditation system; training on the tool will be scheduled in late May.

Program data on the CAHME website: To comply with new standards required by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (which provides formal recognition to CAHME as an accrediting body), CAHME’s board asked management to make additional program statistics available on our web site. These will provide potential students with data about applications, enrollment, curriculum, job placement, and other metrics. CAHME will use the annual report data and a summary of the accreditation site visit to populate the report.  Programs have until April 20, 2018 to submit changes to CAHME;  the data will go live on May 4, 2018.

More information, including the content from a recent webinar, is available on the CAHME web site. I encourage you to learn more about these three important initiatives.

I also want to draw your attention to two scholarship programs that honor remarkable leaders in business and healthcare. Nominations are now being accepted for the CAHME – Tim Campbell Scholarship, which supports students who reflect Tim Campbell’s commitment to service and volunteerism. The CAHME – Dawn Gideon Foundation Scholarship honors Dawn Gideon and her commitment to supporting women in healthcare management. We encourage programs to nominate deserving students for these two scholarships.

President & CEO
CAHME