Higher Education Administration & Leadership (HEAL)

Academic Level
Issue Area
Academic Program


The HEAL program helps to prepare the next generation of leaders for the nation’s Hispanic Serving Institutions. The program serves the needs of future leaders who are already employed at entry and mid-level positions in higher education institution and offers students a rigorous course of study that combines online instruction with face-to-face residencies, and mixes conventional academic coursework with two hands-on practica at their home institution.

An Adams State University MA-HEAL Graduate will be able to:

  1. Recognize and apply leadership principles, consistent, identification of potential leaders, and delegation and trust in others by inspiring confidence, securing group action, and showing productivity in accomplishing goals and objectives.
  2. Identify and explain how mission and vision inform organizational strategy and decision-making.
  3. Demonstrate ability to manage the human, physical, and financial resources of Hispanic Serving Institutions.
  4. Analyze and evaluate quantitative and qualitative data for continuous improvement including essential and effective steps in the decision-making and problem-solving process for individuals and organizations.
  5. Employ effective communication skills—writing, listening, speaking—and how to carry out a communication plan and create a climate that encourages open and non-defensive communication and fosters a learning organization.
  6. Demonstrate the ability to work well with others toward a common purpose/good and in a culturally competent and ethical manner based on a core set of values and beliefs that underlie the decision-making process.
  7. Illustrate knowledge of the higher education industry in general and Hispanic Serving Institutions specifically.
  8. Identify and assess legal and political considerations that influence dimensions of decision-making.
  9. Recognize factors that may influence student access and success in Hispanic Serving Institutions.

Program Description

The Higher Education Administration and Leadership (HEAL) online program prepares higher education professionals to manage and lead in institutions of higher education, especially Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs), and to enhance the success of the students they serve. Our mission works with the mission and goals of Adams State University and the Office of Graduate Studies. The master’s in Higher Education and Administration and Leadership program will provide high quality courses that are rigorous, transferable at the graduate level and reasonably priced.


Among the cohorts that have graduated more than 87% are satisfied or strongly satisfied with the program overall.

Latino/as account for 60% of total enrollment.

Overall persistence and graduation rates are at 81%, with Latino/as accounting for 62%.

HEAL students have won national awards including NASPA Region IV West, Graduate Rising Star and the Kika de la Garza fellowship program; presented at more than 2 dozen conferences; and continue to receive promotions/new positions as a direct result of their learning in the HEAL program.

Students must meet all program goals in order to successfully complete the program. Assessment is conducted through two on the job practica as well as an e-portfolio assessment.

HEAL is the only higher education program in the Western Interstate Commission on Higher Education's Western Regional Graduate Program (WICHE/WRGP). WICHE/WRGP requires programs to meet criteria of distinctiveness and quality.