GREENSBORO — N.C. A&T soon will have a new major for students who aspire to work in health care.
The UNC Board of Governors this week approved A&T’s plan for a new bachelor’s degree in health services management. It will be available to first-year students who start at A&T in fall 2020.
Lenora Campbell, dean of A&T’s College of Health and Human Sciences, said in an interview that the new major will blend existing business and science classes with new courses created especially for the degree program. She said A&T’s program will emphasize technology, data management and analytics.
In the health care industry, “you’ve got to be able to work with data,” Campbell said. “That’s what's driving decision-making.”
A&T's new program will prepare students for graduate school or administrative careers at hospitals, health systems, nursing homes, health insurance companies and other health and human services firms.
The university will offer this new major amid surging demand for health care workers. The federal Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that the health care industry will add about 2.4 million new jobs between 2016 and 2026.
In North Carolina, according to the state commerce department, jobs in health care and social services will grow by 16.1 percent over that same period. No other sector is projected to increase as quickly.
Campbell noted the popularity of a similar program at UNC-Charlotte, one of four UNC System schools that offer an undergraduate degree program in health care management. (Several other private N.C. colleges have similar programs.) UNC-Charlotte launched the program in 2017. As of the spring 2019 semester, about 750 students had enrolled in the program, making it one of the university’s most popular majors.
A&T anticipates starting the program in 2020 with 90 full-time students and projects it will grow eventually to about 360. A&T plans to hire two professors and an administrative staff person for its new program.