MHA Placement Overview
The MHA Placement class (JSGS 886, 3 credit units) provides students with an opportunity to enhance their graduate experience with a one-month placement within a partner organization (e.g., the Saskatchewan Ministry of Health). During this time, students work on an assigned policy project under the supervision of both a mentor within the partner organization and a JSGS academic supervisor.
The MHA Placement is an opportunity for students to apply what they are learning in their coursework to a current health policy, administration, or system-related issue. Students are expected to spend the equivalent of one month of full-time work on the project. At the completion of the project, students prepare and present a report on the experience and their learning.
There are two routes for the MHA Placement:
- Student Initiated Pathway: Students take the lead on identifying a potential partner organization, connecting with a prospective mentor within that organization, and, together with that prospective mentor, develop a Placement Proposal.
- Competitive Stream: Calls for applications are sent out via email when opportunities are available. Keep a close eye on your emails so you don't miss calls or reminder emails.
To qualify for the JSGS MHA Placement Program (both the competitive and student-initiated pathway), applicants must:
- Be current (not graduated) JSGS MHA or MHA-HIIM students;
- Have a cumulative average of at least 75% in their program; and
- Have completed a minimum of 9 credit hours in their program.
Student Initiated Pathway
Please note the following parameters that have been developed for the MHA Student Initiated Pathway placements:
- The Placement must be within an approved partner organization. Both public and private organizations are potentially eligible for approval. Key considerations include having a role in healthcare in Canada and work that involves policy implications or considerations.
- Examples of eligible partner organizations include but are not limited to:
- provincial/territorial ministries of health
- regional health authorities
- hospitals, pharmacies
- emergency medical response teams
- public health offices
- private healthcare delivery organizations
- health information organizations
MHA students must complete a one-month ‘residency’ or Placement period within the partner organization. During this time and unless special arrangements are made, the student is generally expected to work full-time hours and be physically present within the partner organization. Please note that exceptions may be made in relation to COVID-19 and associated public health recommendations and restrictions, or with the agreement of the student, mentor, and supervising faculty member.
Placement requirements include:
- There must be a well-defined policy project that is appropriate in scale given the duration of the Placement.
- There must be suitable supervision and mentorship by a designated mentor within the partner organization.
- The Placement should be outside the student’s regular scope of employment.
- The student identifies a potential partner organization and a willing mentor within that organization.
- The student and mentor agree on a proposed policy project and timing for the Placement.
- The student prepares and submits a Placement proposal to JSGS at firstname.lastname@example.org. Placement proposals must include the following elements:
- Information about the proposed partner organization and its roles/activities, along with information about how further details may be obtained (e.g. organizational website);
- A brief overview of the proposed policy project;
- The proposed timing for the Placement, and
- Contact information for the proposed mentor within the partner organization.
- The Placement proposal is reviewed within JSGS. If approved, the student is given permission to register in the appropriate section of JSGS 886. The Student Experience Officer will assist in preparing the necessary agreements for signature. The supervising faculty member will meet with the student and the mentor to discuss course expectations and confirm final arrangements for the Placement.
The following timelines apply to the Student-Initiated Pathway MHA Placements.
|Semester||Deadline for Placement Proposal Submissions|
|Fall Placements||June 30|
|Winter Placements||October 31|
|Spring/Summer Placements||February 28|
Placement Proposals can be submitted directly to email@example.com.
In order to receive course credit for the Placement, students must complete their assigned policy project as well as a written reflection on the Placement experience, which they will present to an audience of JSGS faculty, MHA students, and representatives from the partner organization. Details on these assignments are provided in the course syllabus.
The Competitive stream for the MHA Placement runs in the fall and winter semesters. Students are selected through an application and interview process to participate in an experiential learning placement, generally with the Ministry of Health in the Government of Saskatchewan.
The in-person placement runs for 4 weeks, over the respective semester. During the placement, students work on a designated policy project under the supervision of a mentor within the organization and the course instructor. Students participate in relevant reading and coursework for JSGS 886 throughout the entire semester, culminating in a presentation on their internship experience and research project. In-person placements take place in Regina. JSGS will assist you in identifying housing options and planning for your time here.
Timelines for Competitive MHA Placements
|Semester||Call Date||Application Deadline|
|Fall||April 1||April 30|
|Winter||October 1||October 31|
Interviews for shortlisted applicants will take place in May (fall placements) and November (winter placements).
The following documents are to be submitted in full to firstname.lastname@example.org:
- Cover Letter with information about your professional background and why you are interested in the MHA Placement;
- Professional Resume/CV;
- Unofficial Transcripts (these can be printed from URSelfService);
- Writing sample of a graded assignment done by yourself only in one of your MHA or MHA-HIIM courses; and
- Names of two academic references (JSGS faculty or course instructors).
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, this opportunity is available for both MHA and MHA-HIIM students.
Yes, participating students register in JSGS 886. JSGS 886 is a 3-credit unit course, and the usual tuition applies.
Some partner organizations may provide a nominal scholarship to students who complete Placements with them, while others will not.
No. MHA Placements under the Student Initiated Pathway can take place in any province or territory in Canada.
It is possible to complete a Placement with your employer organization, but the Placement project must be entirely separate from your professional position. You must be able to complete the Placement as a student learner, rather than as an employee of the organization.
Working arrangements will be determined in consultation with the student, mentor, and supervising JSGS faculty member. On-site, in-person Placements are generally preferred as they often result in higher-quality experiences. However, alternative arrangements including remote work options may be acceptable, particularly in response to public health concerns regarding the COVID-19 pandemic.
The project should be able to be completed in the equivalent of one month, working on a full-time basis. With the approval of the mentor and the supervising JSGS faculty member, students can complete the Placement on a part-time basis over an extended period of time (e.g., 0.5 time, over 2 months). The Placement, and the accompanying academic requirements, must be able to be completed within the scheduled semester.
There are also occasionally MHA Placement opportunities available with the Saskatchewan Ministry of Health. Calls for applications for these positions are sent out by email, and interested students are invited to apply. There is an interview process, and students are selected by representatives from the Ministry.
No. To successfully complete JSGS 886, students must also give a webinar presentation and submit a written reflection detailing their professional development through the Placement in relation to the MHA program competencies. Details of these assignments will be provided in the course syllabus.
Past MHA Placement students have worked on a wide variety of topics, using varied approaches. Some examples of previous areas of work include:
- Improving communication between the Alberta Chemistry Discipline Council and rural sites
- Identifying strategies or further actions required by the College of Dietitians of British Columbia to bridge gaps in achieving cultural humility and safety for entry to practice
- Creating an education resource to address nurses' roles in antimicrobial stewardship
- Contributing to a review of a Prosthetics and Orthotics program
- Conducting an environmental scan to inform reorganization of provincial emergency medical services
- Supporting the development of a palliative care service delivery framework by reviewing current symptom management practices and service access issues across the province
- Developing a resource “hub” to ensure efficient physician access to evidence-based resources and information on the treatment of mental health and addiction-related concerns
- Reviewing and contributing to the design of medical management policies to maximize safety in the health region
- Conducting a comparative review of the roles of paramedicine and nurse practitioners in supporting long-term care residents, to identify opportunities, best practices, and challenges
- Proposal Template - Student Initiated Pathways (More information to come.)
- Placement Evaluation - Student (More information to come.)
- Placement Evaluation - Mentor (More information to come.)