Loyola University Chicago

Beazley Institute for Health Law and Policy

School of Law


MJ grad on online learning and why compliance is key

MJ grad on online learning and why compliance is key
Shondralis P. Allen
MJ in Health Law, August 2016
BS, Sociology, Northern Illinois Univers
Senior Business Systems Analyst, University of Chicago Medicine

Why did you decide to pursue an online degree at Loyola University Chicago

I chose Loyola’s MJ because the program is innovative and the curriculum is current and cutting-edge.  Classes are taught by industry leaders, professionals, and experts in the field of health law.   The MJ program is also offered online, which was very appealing to me as a working professional.

What are the benefits of learning online?

The main benefit of learning online is the flexibility of working when you are available and having the ability to work ahead when your time permits.  However, you must be a focused and dedicated student.  There are hard deadlines and live classes that you must attend.  The interaction with your professors and classmates is valuable and important to the learning process and your understanding of coursework.

What tips do you have for current students that would help them get the most out of their experience?   

I would encourage students to attend the Education Immersion Weekends, especially early in the program.   The EIWs provide a great opportunity to network and meet professors and classmates who are an invaluable resource to increasing your knowledge and advancing career goals.

Why did you choose to concentrate your studies in compliance?

I chose to pursue an MJ in Health Law degree with a concentration in compliance because the health care industry is constantly evolving.  Reimbursement by federal health care programs is directly related to provider compliance with regulatory requirements. Providers must implement, monitor, and maintain successful compliance programs.  With the passing of the Affordable Care Act and changes in the governmental payment structure, compliance professionals are essential in all facets of health care.   

In your opinion, what are the most important skills and areas of knowledge you have acquired while studying compliance? 

The most important skills I have acquired are analytical thinking, legal writing, and the ability to conduct legal research.  The knowledge I acquired while in the program is extensive.  Compliance professionals must understand the Seven Pillars of an Effective Compliance Program.  The compliance courses provided students with the tools to create, monitor, and audit compliance programs for efficacy.  A compliance officer must have the ability to audit, assess, and modify an organization’s compliance program with independence to achieve and maintain effectiveness.  The curriculum in the MJ program has thoroughly prepared me for these challenges.