A hospital management career involves overseeing the operation of a hospital department or an entire hospital. To prepare for this type of career, you will typically need to earn a secondary school diploma or equivalent credential and then go on to college. A bachelor's degree in a field such as healthcare administration may help you land a job supporting or assisting a hospital administrator or even managing a department, but you will typically need more education if you want to become a hospital administrator — that job usually requires a master's degree instead. Additionally, you may do well to gain work experience to help you secure the job you want, and internships, research projects, and on-the job training opportunities may help as well.
You will likely need a high level of education when you want to go into hospital administration. For starters, you will need to graduate from secondary school or earn an acceptable substitute credential to prepare for this career. Most colleges will want to see that you are a well-rounded student and have performed well in language, math, science, and history classes. You may also benefit from taking classes that help you build leadership and communication skills, as both are necessary for a career in hospital management. Additionally, taking computer courses and those that prepare you for managing a business, often offered as electives, may help as well.
Many employers prefer to hire individuals who have master's degrees for the hospital management jobs that involve the most responsibility, such as hospital administrator positions. If you choose to end with a bachelor's degree rather than going on to graduate school, you may find that you qualify for jobs that are supportive in nature or involve managing a hospital department. Entering a bachelor's degree program in healthcare administration may prove a good choice when you want to pursue a career in this field. You will typically take courses in such subjects as health office operations, management in healthcare, managed care, and medical assisting as well as a range of other classes.
To begin a career as a hospital administrator, you will typically need a master's degree in a major such as healthcare administration or health service management. These programs typically last for about two years and cover healthcare financial management, health legislation and information systems. You may also take classes in subjects such as epidemiology and health policy. This type of program often includes courses in strategic marketing or research and statistics as well.
Most employers also prefer to hire individuals with related work experience for hospital management jobs. You can take advantage of on-the-job training opportunities and internships to get the type of experience you need to prepare for this career. Getting involved with a medical facility's research team may also help you prepare to go into hospital management.