Student Life

The MS in global health policy and management program at Heller is about more than just classes and career development. Heller students develop close friendships in their cohort (which is often made up of individuals from dozens of countries around the world)—friendships made over hours spent studying for exams, organizing events, participating in clubs and working groups and completing group projects.

We’re often asked how the Heller MS program differs from a master’s in public health (MPH). In an MPH program, policy is just one of many areas that you’ll cover, whereas at Heller, health policy is the focus of our program. Because we’re not a school of public health, if you’re interested in combining health with development, for instance, you can just walk down the hall to speak with a faculty member or researcher who works in that area. This isn’t possible at larger institutions where you can’t make those connections as easily, if at all.

Many of our students come in with an understanding of health systems that is limited to their experiences of building one-on-one relationships with patients. Here, they learn how to make structural improvements so they’re improving health outcomes for entire populations and not just individuals.

Heller students are diverse in their backgrounds, opinions, experience and approach, but in general we are an open, welcoming, inclusive environment that is consistently buzzing with activity.

Students tabling at the Heller working group fair.

Speaking of Activities…

Our students are busy! In addition to keeping up with coursework—often for two degree programs—students participate in varied extracurricular activities at Heller. Every week is filled with guest speakers, special events, training opportunities and more. Here are some examples:

  • All-Heller and MS program town halls
  • Heller Cultural Dinners: students share regional food and culture
  • Academic Poster Sessions on faculty, student and staff research findings
  • Tuesday Talks: Heller researchers and faculty share their recent work
  • Author Talks: Heller authors on their recently published books
  • Degree program capstone events
  • Public lectures by policy experts and practitioners
  • Career Development Center-sponsored events, including employer spotlights, workshops, treks to local employers and weekend treks to employers in New York City and Washington, D.C.
  • Student associations and working group events
  • Community Days and periodic professional development opportunities in diversity, equity and inclusion