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If there’s one thing we’ve learned from the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s the importance of strong leadership and expertise from our healthcare professionals. These leaders have helped keep us safe, nursed the sick and been using the cutting edge of medical research to understand the virus and develop a vaccine.

At Imperial College Business School, our MSc International Health Management programme is designed to equip aspiring healthcare leaders and professionals with the skills to help them enact global change, on a small and large scale. Many alumni from this programme have been on the frontlines during the pandemic.

For those looking to build their career in healthcare, the MSc International Health Management programme could be the right next step for you.

MSc International Health Management is a one-year, full-time programme that equips you with the tools to approach the challenges of management in the healthcare sector. The programme combines business-focused teaching and cutting-edge research, where you learn from outstanding faculty at the centre of health management research.

MSc International Health Management graduates go on to work in roles across the healthcare industry, from management roles to humanitarian work, and medical careers, all experiencing meaningful work. Imperial graduates have secured roles in leading organisations such as the NHS, Pfizer, World Health Organisation and Accenture.

Imperial Careers Consultant, Melody Goh, specialises in equipping students for careers in the healthcare sector. She says:

The area of healthcare graduates go into varies greatly as it’s such a diverse group each year, some with medical/clinical backgrounds and others with life sciences or other experiences behind them. Often they have work experience prior to joining the programme.”

While MSc International Health Management students come to Imperial from diverse backgrounds, they all have one thing in common, a passion for healthcare. Our graduates have used their experience studying at Imperial to excel in their careers and have been provided with a skill set that has supported them from their first role post-graduation, to now in 2021, a testing time for the healthcare industry. We introduce you to some of these incredible alumni and give an insight into their careers after studying MSc International Health Management.

Carissa Gilbert, MSc International Health Management 2015-16, alumnus of Imperial College Business School

Carissa Gilbert

Cohort: MSc International Health Management 2015-16

Current role: Strategy Advisor, NHS 

What motivated you to choose to study the MSc International Health Management programme at Imperial?

I chose to study MSc International Health Management at Imperial because of the dual nature of the programme. It provided opportunities to learn about healthcare systems on an international level as well as to gain a thorough understanding of healthcare from a business mindset. I was impressed by the practical nature of the programme, including the Healthcare Sector Project and Work Placement modules. I wanted to learn more about how to apply business acumen to challenges facing the public sector and knew that completing the programme would prepare me very well. 

What skills did you learn during the programme that have directly helped you in your job?

The consulting and teamwork skills that I gained during my time at Imperial have benefited me in the various roles I have had since completing the programme. For the Healthcare Sector Project, I was a Strategy Consultant for Bupa Healthcare Analytics. This involved working as a team to assess the preparedness of private healthcare markets for ageing populations. Core consulting skills such as strategic thinking, data analysis and even softer skills such as relationship and client management were strengthened through this project.

Did the programme give you more confidence before entering the workforce?

Absolutely, primarily because of the Careers team at Imperial College Business School. During my first semester, I attended around one employer event per week and went to career workshops on topics including writing your CV and cover letters, networking and preparing for individual and group assessments. I also had multiple practice interviews with career consultants. These practice interviews helped me make the most of the limited time I had to prepare for interviews and ultimately helped me be successful in securing a job offer early on in the programme.

What do you enjoy most about your current job? 

I am currently a Strategy Advisor in NHS England and NHS Improvement, focused on the national strategy for COVID-19 vaccination. Being a part of the strategy team for the COVID-19 Vaccine Deployment programme has been an incredible opportunity. It has been fascinating to see how strategic decisions are made at a national level, especially when there are many unknowns and resources such as workforce and supply are limited and variable at times. This has been the most impactful and meaningful role I've had in my career so far. The aspect I enjoy most about my role is the difference that the team is making in delivering the most successful vaccination programme in the history of the NHS and ultimately, getting the country one step closer out of the pandemic. 

What piece of advice would you give to someone considering studying MSc International Health Management?

I recommend doing your research for the application process. This could involve reading as much as you can about Imperial online (hint: the Business School’s website and student profiles provide excellent material for applications), attending an online webinar or participating in an information session. Building up your knowledge of the programme in advance will help you have well-informed answers for the application as well as help you realise whether the programme is a good fit for you.

If admitted, I would then encourage you to contact current and past students and start thinking about where you are in your career and how the programme could be the means by which you get closer to achieving your professional aspirations. Additionally, it is worth applying early, not only to allow enough time to conduct research for your application but also so that your application can be considered for the scholarship programme at Imperial.

Vipul Modi, MSc International Health Management 2017-18, alumnus at Imperial College Business School

Dr Vipul Modi

Cohort: MSc International Health Management 2017-18

Current role: Senior Healthcare Consultant, Ara Darzi Qatar Consulting

What motivated you to choose to study the MSc International Health Management programme at Imperial? 

I came from a clinical background, with a Bachelor's in dental surgery. For a period of time, I had the intention to transfer from a clinical to a management role, with the dynamism and variety that a management role may offer. Imperial as an institution is globally recognised and acknowledged for its educational excellence.

Taking the above two driving factors into account, to study the MSc International Health Management programme felt like a natural aligned choice.

What skills did you learn during the programme that have directly helped you in your job?  

Most if not all modules studied in the programme have been put into practice, along with great benefits attained from the programme structure.

Pertaining to the structure, I gained the following skills:

  • Managing workload and tasks
  • Coordinating with colleagues and working holistically within teams
  • Facilitating discussions and conducting brainstorming activities
  • Displaying professional etiquette

Related to the modules studied, the following have been greatly beneficial:

  • Organisational Behaviour: understanding workplace networks and balance of power
  • Strategy: knowledge of strategic frameworks and a methodology to follow to deliver strategic transformational change for any sector
  • Consulting: engagement with clients, conducting research, thinking critically and analytically

How long after completing the programme did you secure your first job?

I was fortunate enough to secure my first position supported by the programme during my final semester. I began networking and engaging with potential employers and influential figures in the local healthcare ecosystem from January of my Master’s year. Since attaining this position, my desire to be challenged and experience new environments has led me on a journey, amassing experience and knowledge along the way. Today, I am a Program Manager, based at the Ministry of Public Health in Qatar, supporting the delivery of the National Health Strategy and Public Health Strategy. 

How would you describe your experience working in the industry?

My role as a Healthcare Management employee is quite dynamic and varied day-to-day.

At a high level, I am required to manage client relationships, coordinate with other departments, deliver strategic pieces of work, conduct reporting activities and complete routine project management tasks. These efforts combined facilitate the smooth and efficient running of the projects I am responsible for.

During my time in my current position, I have lobbied for the enactment of new health policy, managed public health awareness campaigns, set up governance structures and led service transformation.

What piece of advice would you give to someone considering studying MSc International Health Management?

My advice to any student considering studying MSc International Health Management is to immerse yourself into the programme. By doing so you are likely to achieve the maximum benefits. Likely throughout the programme, not everything will relate directly to healthcare. However, the objective is to adopt the skills and a new way of thinking, which may be applied to healthcare as well as to any other industry.

If you are excited about a career in healthcare management, undertaking this Master’s will act as a springboard to achieving that goal. Better still, you'll make some wonderful friends and lecturers who will remain mentors for life.

Desree Richards, MSc International Health Management 2017-18, alumnus of Imperial College Business School

Desree Richards

Cohort: MSc International Health Management 2017-18

Current role: COVID-19 Task Manager, NHS

What was your educational/professional background before studying a Master’s at Imperial?

I had a degree in Cardiovascular Physiology and was working in the NHS.

What motivated you to choose to study the MSc International Health Management programme at Imperial? 

I wanted to transition from a clinical to a managerial role within healthcare. Before applying to the programme, I researched testimonials from previous alumni and visited the Business School to help decide if it was the correct programme to aid my transition. I found MSc International Health Management to be well established amongst the other health management programmes in the UK. The teachers, international content and suitability for clinical professionals as well as business students, all led to me choosing this programme at Imperial.

How long after completing the programme did you secure your first job? 

Straight away. I am currently I am working as a Project Manager for the NHS.

What skills did you learn during the programme that have directly helped you in your job?  

The emphasis on teamwork helped to prepare for my role as a project manager. Working on the assigned projects for the different subjects, working to individual strengths and experience is very similar to the projects and programmes I work on in the NHS.


Are you interested in studying MSc International Health Management?