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Meet our students: Denise

MHA Student


After working as a Physician for 25 years, Denise decided it was time to start pursuing her dream of becoming a leader in the health care sector. Enrolling into the Master of Health Administration with Monash Online was Denise’s first step. The Monash Online team caught up with Denise to ask her a few questions about what it’s like to study online and how it has impacted her career and life. 

Q: How would you describe your dream career?

A: One that allows me to spend more time with my family. My last role involved shift and weekend work so a job would have more predictable hours. As I started to approach my 50th birthday I reassessed what is important in life and I decided I wanted to be there with my children. I also really enjoy big picture thinking and feel I have the experience to help shape the health sector in a positive way. 

Q: Why was a Master of Health Administration the right option for you?

A: After 25 years of working as a Physician, I was ready to grow and to move into more of a senior role where I could create more change in the health care sector. I weighed up my options, and I thought about completing an MBA, however, the Master of Health Administration fit my needs better as it specialised in my field of expertise. I didn’t want to be in the same job for another 15 years so I wanted to be able to signal to future employees that I had the necessary skills to move into a leadership or policy type role. 


Q: Why did you choose Monash Online?

A: I wanted to study online so that I could maintain my lifestyle. I’m able to take my three children to their sporting activities, maintain my exercise routine and meet friends for coffee and lunch. It hasn’t been easy, but I’ve made it work with some breaks. I also studied my undergraduate, a Bachelor of Medicine, with Monash University so I knew their medical degrees had a good reputation. The Master of Health Administration is accredited with RACMA which was a bonus too. 

Q: What did you enjoy most about your online studies?

A: I was nervous at first about studying online. I completed my undergraduate at Monash University on campus without even using a computer. I was relieved when it was a lot easier than I expected — the workbooks and tasks each week were very clear, and the library was well set out.

I loved the Zoom tutorials and the Q&As were interactive. I got a deeper understanding of interesting topics such as hospital funding and issues that are in the news such as Obamacare. I can now analyse and understand Australia’s Medicare system on a much deeper level. My favourite unit was accounting, it was well set out and helped me understand concepts and I got a new perspective. There is a huge sense of achievement that comes with it all. 

Q: How do you balance your family, work and studies?

A: I have a very supportive husband that has helped throughout and manage my work-life balance during my studies. During the two weeks off between teaching periods, I usually cook and fill up the freezer up with food to prepare for the next six weeks.

Q: You have nearly completed your studies. Have you noticed the impact of your studies yet?

A: I’m still waiting for the perfect role to come up but I was ecstatic when I successfully got a flexible medical-legal job that I can do from home. I have no doubt my MHA studies gave me a competitive edge when I applied for that role. 

Learn more about the Master of Health Administration here.