Frequently Asked Questions


Who can apply to Health Sector Management (HSM)?  

Individuals who are seeking a Duke MBA and who are working in, or are interested in, all areas of the business of health care. Please see the admissions page for more specific requirements or send an email to

Must I apply separately to HSM?  

No, prospective HSM students must apply through The Duke MBA – Daytime, Cross Continent, Weekend Executive or Global Executive admissions process. Applications contain a section in which applicants may indicate their desire to pursue the HSM certificate. 

Will applying to HSM affect my chances for admissions?  

No, students must meet all Duke MBA admissions requirements and must be accepted into the Daytime, Cross Continent, Weekend Executive or Global Executive program prior to being able to pursue an HSM concentration or certificate.

Consideration for the HSM program does not affect one’s candidacy in the application process for the daytime program.  The criteria for admission is the same.

May I meet with an HSM representative? 

Students with interest in the Daytime and/or Executive MBA program should contact our office at 919.660.7989 if they are planning a campus visit and would like to schedule an appointment to meet with an HSM representative.

Will I study with HSM students exclusively? 

Daytime MBA HSM students join the larger cohort for the core MBA classes.  HSM-specific classes consist mostly of HSM students, but are open to all Fuqua Students and those from other Duke programs, including engineering, basic science, public policy, medicine, law, clinical research and global health.

Weekend Executive, Global Executive and Cross Continent MBA HSM students join the larger cohort of MBA students for the core classes.  In contrast, HSM-specific classes consist only of HSM students, including returning Fuqua alumni pursuing the HSM Certificate.

How much does the HSM program cost? 

For students enrolled in the Daytime MBA program, there is no additional cost to pursue an HSM Certificate. 

For returning Fuqua alumni and non-Daytime MBA students, there is additional tuition for the HSM Certificate. For specific tuition amounts, please use the following links for the applicable program: Global Executive students; Weekend Executive students; Cross Continent students; and alumni.

What are the backgrounds of HSM students?  

HSM students come from a wide variety of backgrounds. Many are pharmaceutical, biotechnology and insurance professionals, as well as physicians and other clinicians with management responsibilities. HSM also draws professionals serving the health sector or seeking to move into the sector. While most students have health care backgrounds, this is not a requirement.

The five MBA programs that incorporate HSM - Daytime, Cross Continent, Weekend Executive, Global Executive and the HSM Alumni Certificate - are designed to meet the needs and interests of professionals at different stages of their careers, and regardless of where in the world they are based.

What types of careers do HSM students typically pursue? 
 Our students generally pursue careers within biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, health care consulting, medical devices, and provider systems; they tend assume positions in marketing, finance, operations, strategic planning, and business development.
How many students are in the program?  

There are over 150 HSM students represented in The Duke MBA program. The HSM cohort constitutes approximately 20 percent of the student population.

Are there separate requirements for joint degree students?  
Joint degree Daytime students within HSM must complete the HSM course requirements; however, these students are required to complete only one health-related elective.
Are there scholarships available to HSM students? 
Yes.  There are named scholarships at Fuqua specifically for Daytime students pursuing the HSM certificate.  Recipients are selected by The Fuqua School of Business Financial Aid Committee at the time of admission as a merit scholarship; no special application is required.
I work in the pharmaceutical industry and only need to consider pharmaceutical issues. Your program is general, so will it address my needs?  
HSM focuses on the most pertinent issues facing today’s pharmaceutical industry, including the re-importation of drugs into the United States, the expense of developing new drugs and obtaining patents, and changes to Medicare. By also interacting with our top-ranked faculty and health care leaders across the health sector, students gain greater insight into how organizations in other arenas affect the pharmaceutical industry.
What experience does your faculty have in understanding the business of health care? 

The Fuqua School of Business has offered a Health Sector Management curriculum for 16 years, and it is now the largest, most comprehensive program of its kind among top-tier business schools. In the process, Fuqua has built a world-renowned faculty who offer students an interdisciplinary learning experience. Visit the faculty listing for more information.

In addition, Fuqua continues to enjoy strong links with the world-renowned Duke University Medical Center, as well as the Duke schools of law, engineering and public policy. Fuqua draws upon these links and other ties to bring top faculty to HSM.

When do HSM courses begin? 

Health Care in the 21st Century, also known as the “HSM Bootcamp,” is a required two-credit, graded course for Daytime students and starts the week before new student orientation in the summer.

This course is also open to students in Cross Continent, Weekend Executive, Global Executive and the Alumni Certificate programs.

Students in the Weekend Executive, Cross Continent and Global Executive programs begin their HSM coursework in October following the start of the Cross Continent program.