Student Research

Students apply the principles of public health, health administration, and health policy to a formal inquiry and analysis of a problem or issue relevant to health administration and their career interests. The essay allows the student to demonstrate their mastery of health policy concepts, principles, and theoretical models gained from formal coursework. 

Master of Health Administration (MHA) students are now required to link their master’s essay to an issue, problem, or initiative relevant to their field placement. Although Master of Public Health (MPH) students are also encouraged to draw on their field experiences for a topic, they may choose to develop a research paper on any theme relevant to public health policy, agency, or program management with the approval of their essay advisor. The table below of HPM master’s essay titles reflects the diversity of topics and methodologies of our students’ research studies.

Sample HPM Master’s Essay Titles

Student Degree Program Essay Title
Marissa Andreassi MPH UPMC and Highmark consent decree: an analysis of the Pittsburgh market and implications for members
Tanya Bahl MHA Enhancement of revenue cycle management: case in change management
Kristin Free MHA A case study: transitioning to an institute model
Zachary Hayes MHA Federal health care delivery among Native American populations: a historical perspective
Hiroko Henker MPH Employees' perception of organizational structure and culture at Angkor Hospital for Children Siem Reap, Cambodia
Aleksandra Jurewicz MHA The CARE Act's implementation process — UPMC case study
Amrit Pal Kaur MHA Improving care and experience for hospitalized dementia patients through implementation of dementia activity room
MonaLisa Leung Beckford MHA Lean implementation at a community hospital
Peter Lewellen MHA Restacking the nursing units at Allegheny General Hospital to achieve geographic patient placement
Melina Mermingas MPH Comparative analysis of United States, Canada, and Portugal's drug and syringe exchange program legislation and regulations
Sushma Narra MHA The impact of state family planning policies on women's and children's health and economic outcomes
Ashley Narvaez MHA Incorporating Doula services for better maternal and child health outcomes in Medicaid populations
Raul Rios MHA Improving the employee experience with leadership rounding
Kevin Stoner MPH Barriers to dental care for children with medical assistance
Abigail Tan MPH Health system contact centers as the first step of the patient experience: quality assurance and best practices at the UPMC contact center
Li-Yun Wu MHA Hospitalist implementation in Ismett: surgical comanagement


Dean's Day Research Award

HPM students have the opportunity to participate in the Pitt Public Health Dean’s Day Student Research Competition.
2nd Place 2019: Kevin Stoner
2nd Place 2016: Sally Caine Leathers
1st Place 2013: Freda Koomson
1st Place 2012: Avi Arora