When Kathryn Ritter started thinking about going to graduate school, one of her first phone calls was her uncle, American Sentinel University VP of Partner Engagement Mike Rickart.
The case manager for Rocky Mountain Human Services had been thinking about getting a master’s degree, but needed advice on how to further her goals. “I have known my whole life that I want to work in the healthcare area, but I got into case management and really like it,” says Kathryn, who is from Aurora, Colorado, and earned a B.A. in Public Health and Sociology from the University of Colorado Denver in 2014. “I have a great mentor in my uncle and realized that he’d probably be the right person to talk to.”
A foundation as a Certified Nurse Aide
While in college, Kathryn became a Certified Nurse Aide (CNA) and started her post-bachelor’s career as a CNA for Centura’s south Denver hospitals before becoming a resource specialist for Centura Connect. Later, Kathryn joined Centura Health Connections as a referral specialist. When Centura Health teamed up with United Healthcare to launch Colorado Doctors Plan in 2018, she jumped over to help get the program up and running as a patient coordinator. In December 2019, she joined Rocky Mountain Human Services.
Considered a Master of Public Health
Kathryn always pictured herself getting a Master of Public Health because of her bachelor’s degree, but her boss holds an MBA Healthcare—and it got her wheels turning. “Seeing what he does opened my eyes to future options and got me thinking about that degree,” she says. “I asked my uncle Mike what kinds of doors an MBA Healthcare might open and he explained what it could do for my career. Opening a clinic. Running a hospital. There were so many things. I got excited.”
Enrolling at American Sentinel
In 2018, Kathryn started the MBA Healthcare at American Sentinel. She was looking forward to receiving a graduate degree that blended business with healthcare, but was pleasantly surprised to gain much more. “I became a much better writer, which I didn’t expect at all,” she says. “The program is smaller, and I like that. I’d give the instructors an A+ and the student success advisors were always so great when you had questions.” After two years of hard work, Kathryn graduated in May 2020.
Thinking about the future
Kathryn doesn’t have a specific career goal in mind but says she’d like to make a difference. “My heart is definitely in public health so I’m always thinking about how healthcare could be easier and better for people,” she says.
In her job at Rocky Mountain Human Services, she helps elderly, blind and disabled children and adults get the healthcare assistance they need, whether that’s mental health support or residential services. “I love helping people get what they need each day,” Kathryn says.
Upper management one day
Kathryn is considering furthering her education with a doctorate down the road, but for now, she hopes her MBA Healthcare will allow her to take advantage of opportunities as they arise. “I hope in five years, I’m in upper management or on my way,” she says. “My goal is to keep growing and learning, and I know this degree will make that possible. I’d 100% recommend American Sentinel and this program.”
Inspired by Kathryn’s story? An MBA Healthcare is perfect for healthcare professionals seeking to lead in the rapidly evolving healthcare industry. Specialized knowledge forms the foundation of nursing and when you acquire new knowledge, you can apply it to nursing practice in ways that enhance patient care and improve outcomes.
Read the other student success stories for more inspiration.
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