Mary TemmMary F. Temm, D.Sc., President and Founding Principle at Temm & Associates, Inc., doesn’t fret over the minor details. Even if that “minor detail” is a 1,700-mile gap between herself and her graduate school.

“I had been searching for a non-traditional learning experience that would allow me to engage in an advanced educational degree program while continuing in my current executive role,” says the Phoenix, AZ resident. “I wanted to advance my knowledge and comprehension of the analytical and strategic management skills required of executives in the increasingly complex healthcare industry.”

Temm’s search brought her to the Executive D.Sc. in Administration-Health Services program at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

“The Executive Doctoral program in Health Services Administration is one of the few programs of its kind in the country,” she says. “The UAB School of Health Professions is one of the largest health professions schools in the nation—a highly ranked institution offering the innovative learning format I was seeking. With the UAB Department of Health Services Administration’s nationally ranked programs, it really was not a very difficult decision.”

The Executive D.Sc. in Administration-Health Services is a practice-oriented, academic program designed for experienced healthcare executives who, like Temm, currently occupy or are preparing to enter senior leadership positions. The program’s blended delivery format –distance learning with only three intensive on-campus sessions per year –enables students to pursue the degree while maintaining their executive responsibilities.

And Temm needed all the time she could get. As President and founding principle of Temm & Associates, Inc., she is responsible for the oversight of all consulting engagements.

“Unlike many of my fellow alumni, who have extensive hospital-based or hospital system experience, I possess over 30 years of experience in managed care,” she says. “Throughout the years, I have led the successful design, implementation and start-up of multiple integrated health plans, Long Term Care Services and Support (LTSS) programs, Patient-Centered Medical Homes, Health Homes, Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) and HMOs.”

Temm’s firm, founded in 1992, strives to assist healthcare organizations in seizing opportunities presented by an ever-changing healthcare environment, enabling healthcare organizations to develop quality-driven, cost-effective programs in the healthcare market. And the firm has benefited from Temm’s time at UAB.

“I can honestly say I use the enhanced knowledge and skill set I obtained with my degree on a daily basis when analyzing clients’ programs and systems,” she says. “The analytical and strategic management skills I developed through the doctoral program allow me to develop and implement innovative, evidence-based solutions with my clients.”

As an alum, Temm is still a strong supporter of the programs at the UAB School of Health Professions. In addition to serving as Secretary of the Board of Directors for the Graduate Programs in Health Administration Alumni Association, Temm has recently joined the Future Success of HSA Committee, a group of alumni who serve as advisors to ensure the continued success of the department.

“The choice of graduate programs can have a profound impact on your career,” she says. “The strength and quality of an institution’s commitment to supporting its students can mean the difference between frustration and success. As an alumna, I’ve continued to reach out to various individuals, employers and industry groups to provide information about the UAB School of Health Professions and to share my experience in the Executive Doctoral program.”

“The commitment to each student’s success, whatever that entails, is engrained in the UAB School of Health Professions’ culture,” she continues. “Students will be hard pressed to find another institution that provides as much support as UAB.”