Rockhurst University offers two options that prepare a student for licensure as a physical therapist and enhance the student’s ability to clinically reason and lead in a complex and changing health care system.
Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT)
Rockhurst’s fully accredited DPT program is grounded in its liberal arts perspective, close faculty-student interactions and interdisciplinary collaboration. The program is designed as an entry-level doctoral degree program with a curriculum that develops competent, caring professionals. The DPT program consists of nine semesters of coursework over three academic years.
DPT/MBA Dual Degree
The Department of Physical Therapy Education and the Helzberg School of Management at Rockhurst have joined forces to offer a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) and Master of Business Administration (MBA) dual degree program. This program emphasizes health care leadership and is the first integrated curriculum of its kind offered in the United States. Students who complete the program will earn graduate degrees in physical therapy and business within four years.
Rockhurst created this program to give students more educational and professional advantages in the health care industry. Developments in legislative and business arenas continue to profoundly impact the delivery of contemporary health care. Physical therapists equipped with leadership and business management skills will have an edge in a competitive marketplace. This dual degree program will develop a broad skill set – cultivating both hands-on clinical expertise and effective business and leadership abilities.
Entry into the DPT/MBA dual degree program is highly competitive. Only a select group of applicants is admitted each year.
Why an MBA?
Increasing numbers of health care professionals are concluding that business and business-management skills enhance one's ability to provide quality, holistic health care. Physical therapists, other health care professionals and health care organizations face challenges in today’s rapidly changing managed-care environment that did not exist even ten years ago. For a variety of reasons, patient behavior is changing as provider prerogatives decrease, costs increase, profit margins decline, and available resources shrink. Sound business practices and effective business management are becoming essential in the fight to provide the highest quality patient care while maintaining financially viable physical therapy practices or health care organizations.
Rockhurst University’s Master in Business Administration in health care leadership is offered to address these needs. The Rockhurst MBA in health care leadership is designed to complement students’ DPT education by helping develop clinician managers of competence and conscience with the business leadership skills necessary to provide quality, holistic care in a dynamic health care environment.
The Rockhurst DPT/MBA dual degree program allows students to earn both the DPT and MBA in less time than they would on a “degree by degree” basis. Additionally, students who complete the DPT/MBA program will earn two graduate degrees for less than what some universities charge for the DPT alone. Students enrolled in the program work alongside medical students, providing opportunities for interdisciplinary study and networking opportunities with other professionals entering the health care industry. This dual degree program will provide DPT students with unique educational experiences and know-how that can greatly accelerate the opportunities for taking on leadership roles in the health care industry.