A Message From Our Executive Sponsor
Working in a nationally recognized academic medical center provides a unique perspective on the collaborative interaction between the clinical delivery, education and research enterprises. The Rush University Medical Center Administrative Fellowship Program is a challenging and rewarding experience.
Rush University Medical Center has always had a strong commitment to education and is particularly known nationally for its practitioner-teacher education model. Our fellowship program gives two individuals the opportunity to further their development and careers by learning from and working with the Medical Center’s senior leadership team. Our program continues to gain national recognition via its success in attracting and developing highly motivated and dedicated fellows from around the country who are focused on improving our organization, improving themselves and ultimately improving our health care delivery system.
Rush is invested in creating successful leadership pipelines for graduate students interested in the health care field. As a part of this effort, we collaborate in a national effort through the National Council on Administrative Fellowships (NCAF) to improve the administrative fellowship application process and experience.
Our program coordinator and mentors, along with senior management, encourage the fellows to take advantage of all opportunities available to them — whether it is attending a board retreat to learn more about governance, observing surgical procedures or visiting a community-based clinic. Our project-based model has allowed fellows to lead projects in areas such as supply chain operations, emergency management, solid organ transplant services and major campus planning and construction efforts, to name a few. Our current fellows provide valuable contributions within their departments and the organization as a whole during their experience. Rush University Medical Center is also a part of Rush University System for Health, encompassing numerous offsite multispecialty clinics, Rush Copley Medical Center and Rush Oak Park Hospital. Fellows have opportunities to work on projects across the system.
The economy and health care reform are creating new challenges for us, and we believe there is an opportunity to continue sharing and learning from each other and building upon the relationships we developed early in our careers. We hope you will consider Rush as the place to start fostering these relationships and begin your journey as a future health care leader.
Richa Gupta, MBBS
Chief Operating Officer, Rush University Medical Group and Senior Vice President, Clinical Operations
The Rush University Medical Center Administrative Fellowship program is a 12-month post-graduate training program. Our fellowship program dedicates the first two months to structured rotations, followed by project-work during which fellows gain vast exposure to the Medical Center. Projects are tailored to the goals of the fellow and the organization's strategic direction. Fellows will work on projects involving many different departments, functions and divisions. Each project will have a sponsor who will work with the fellow to achieve project understanding, completion and evaluation.
Fellows will meet regularly with the program‘s executive sponsor — Richa Gupta, MBBS — to help them discover and discuss their areas of interest in the health care environment. The fellowship program is overseen by a program coordinator and several mentors who work closely with the fellows on a regular basis.
A key attribute of this fellowship is that it exposes fellows to governance and decision-making at the most senior level. Particular attention is given to senior management forums, including selected Board of Trustees committee meetings. Access to senior level management is available throughout the fellowship, including regular mentoring meetings with senior leadership and project sponsors. Additional informal and formal interactions with employees across the entire Medical Center occur through various meetings and project work.
Our fellows also have opportunities to benefit from the academic community at the Medical Center. Opportunities may include “current topics” seminars, and educational and networking events provided through Rush University‘s various colleges and departments. Fellows will be exposed to the importance of the teacher-practitioner model followed at Rush University. This model exposes students and fellows to the research and current projects of faculty members who practice in the Medical Center, creating a rich learning environment for students and practitioners.
Fellows receive constant informal feedback on their performance from their mentors and from project sponsors. In addition to this informal feedback, each fellow receives formal midpoint and final evaluations using the Rush University Medical Center leadership competency model from all project sponsors. The utilization of this model further aligns our fellows with our leadership team and prepares them for leadership roles within the organization after the fellowship.
The Rush University Medical Center Administrative Fellowship Program is geared toward individuals who classify themselves as leaders and self-starters, and those who are interested in building a better understanding of management in an academic medical center across all of its mission components and strategic partnerships.
Qualified applicants have a master's degree (MBA, MHA, MHSA) or equivalent course work completed from a U.S.-based university. Preferred applicants hold a master's degree from a program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation Healthcare Management Education (CAHME); however, applications from non-CAHME programs will be accepted for review. We also accept those applicants with an outstanding residency requirement. All applicants must have completed their coursework prior to the start of the fellowship. We will work with the individual program to ensure that all requirements can be fulfilled.
Rush University Medical Center will provide a compensation package that is competitive with other fellowship programs. Fellows will receive the same benefits as other Rush University Medical Center employees, including medical, vision, dental, flexible spending accounts (health and transportation), short-term disability, long-term disability, life insurance, retirement savings plan and paid time off. Please visit Rush's Careers page for additional information about employment at our Rush System hospitals, including information about Chicago and the surrounding area.
Rush University Medical Center will be participating in the National Administrative Fellowship Centralized Application Service (NAFCAS). NAFCAS is a simplified and streamlined application process for candidates interested in applying to administrative fellowships. NAFCAS will open to applicants on in mid-June.
To apply online, please visit the NAFCAS application portal at nafcas.liaisoncas.com.
As a member of the National Council of Administrative Fellowships (NCAF), we adhere to the NCAF application timeline and process. Please see below for the 2022 standardized dates.
- Complete applications must be submitted by Oct. 7, 2022
- Onsite interviews will be held in mid- to late-October 2022
- Fellowship year begins July 3, 2023, and ends June 30, 2024
Candidates invited to interview on-site will participate in a day-long series of individual and panel meetings with various Medical Center leaders. Candidates should plan on arriving the afternoon prior to interviews for a dinner with current and past fellows. Overnight accommodations and full reimbursement for travel expenses will be provided.
For questions regarding the fellowship or interview process, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Richa Gupta, MBBS, MHSA
Richa Gupta became senior vice president and chief operating officer of Rush University Group (RUMG) in May 2019. RUMG is a multidisciplinary group of more than 800 physicians and advanced practice providers employed by Rush University Medical Center, who provide care in more than 80 practice sites across the Chicago area. Gupta oversees RUMG’s daily operations and works with RUMG leaders to position Rush as one of the nation’s top-performing academic medical centers.
Gupta also has advanced the Medical Center’s quality rankings by focusing on efforts related to reducing avoidable patient harm and improving efficiency of care. In 2020, the health care services company Vizient ranked the Medical Center second among the nation’s academic medical centers for quality and accountability.
Prior to her current role, Gupta was RUMG’s vice president of clinical operations. She collaborated with clinical and operational leaders on improvement in the areas of patient experience, provider experience and access. She previously was RUMC’s vice president of performance improvement and operational effectiveness from 2016 to 2018. Her team developed a system-wide use of a daily management system. Notable quality improvements were seen in radiology, emergency department and urology clinic. From 2015 to 2016, Gupta was the Medical Center’s chief quality officer. In this position, she was responsible for building a culture of quality and safety by integrating Lean processes into all elements of improvement, patient experience, and clinical and operational quality. Gupta began her career at the Medical Center in 2011 as the associate vice president of performance improvement and clinical effectiveness. She was tasked with launching a performance improvement program using Lean Six Sigma improvement skills to lead multidisciplinary projects across the organization.
Prior to joining Rush, Gupta worked at Northwestern Medicine for nearly eight years. She was hired as a performance improvement consultant and spent her last four years there as a surgical services director, managing budget development, deployment and improvement initiatives around surgical scheduling, supply expense reduction and financial management.
In 2017, Gupta was selected for the inaugural class of Carol Emmott Fellows, which prepares women for senior management roles in health care and empowers them to drive change and gender equity at their organizations. She is also the recipient of the 2019 Larry Goodman Leadership Award, named for the former CEO of the Medical Center and Rush University System for Health, which recognized her work in health care improvement and leadership of the 2019 CMS survey. She is currently on the board of CommunityHealth, an organization dedicated to serving the uninsured and underserved in Chicago and its surrounding communities.
Gupta graduated from Bombay University’s T.N. Medical College in Mumbai, India, and received a Master of Health Services Administration from the University of Michigan.
Erin Provagna, MHSA
Fellowship Director, Steering Committee
Erin Provagna is a Performance Improvement Consultant for the Rush University Medical Group. In this role, she supports improvement work across the ambulatory service lines. In addition to this role, Erin serves as administrative fellowship director for the executive office. She supports onboarding, training, and mentorship of the administrative fellows.
Erin is a graduate of the University of Michigan where she earned her Bachelors in Biopsychology, Cognition, Neuroscience; and her Masters in Health Services Administration. Erin was an administrative fellow at Rush (21-22) where her project work focused on COVID-19 vaccine distrubtion.
Patricia Steeves O’Neil, MAE
Interim senior vice president and chief financial officer, Rush University System for Health and Rush University Medical Center, and treasurer, Rush University Medical Center
Patricia Steeves O’Neil provides strategic vision and management for the fiscal direction of Rush University Medical Center and the Rush system. This work includes responsibility for the protection of assets, treasury function, hospital revenue cycle, financial reporting, internal audit, financial planning and budgeting. In addition, she serves as a board member and the treasurer of Rush Health, the system’s physician-hospital organization, and chairman of its Finance Committee.
O’Neil brings to these roles more than 30 years of health care financial management experience, including more than 20 years as Rush University Medical Center’s treasurer. She became interim CFO and senior vice president in May 2020.
Most recently, she has navigated the financial challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic to stabilize Rush’s financial condition. Rush has been at the epicenter of the pandemic in Chicago, treating thousands of patients, including some of the sickest in the Chicago area. This effort has come at a cost: The combination of lost revenues (largely due to a state-mandated temporary halt on elective surgeries) and increased costs are projected to have totaled more than $175 million for the Medical Center and $200 million for the System.
O’Neil was instrumental in implementing a cash preservation strategy, securing liquidity from lenders and issuing $330 million debt in turbulent markets in order to invest in Rush’s growth strategies and the construction of the Joan and Paul Rubschlager Building, Rush's future state-of-the-art ambulatory cancer and neurosciences facility. She now is responsible for the Medical Center’s financial stabilization plan and restoring operating income while also preserving employee benefits in order to retain front line staff.
As treasurer, O’Neil manages the Rush University Medical Center Obligated Group’s indebtedness program, establishing debt targets, asset/liability objectives and overall debt structure. She directs the process for the issuance of debt, working with bond counsel, financial advisors, trustees, credit providers and underwriters.
During her tenure, Rush University System for Health has attained multiple upgrades and outlook improvements from Moody’s, Fitch and Standard and Poor’s. Most recently, in December 2018, Rush University System for Health was upgraded to a AA- rating, the first AA rating in Rush’s history. In January 2015, the system refinanced approximately $500 million of debt in order to reduce interest costs and amend its terms and conditions, resulting in an annual net present value savings of $7 million.
O’Neil also plans and directs all aspects of Rush’s investment programs, including endowment, Master Retirement Trust, strategic cash, Self-Insurance Trust, defined contribution plans, and planned giving program, which combined total more than $3 billion. She develops and establishes investment policies, procedures and controls and oversees the evaluation, selection, and performance of investment vehicles, managers, consultants, and custodian with finance leadership and board oversight.
In addition, she is an assistant professor in the Rush University College of Health Sciences, where she teaches in the nationally ranked Master’s in Health System Management Program. She received an Outstanding Faculty award in 2004, 2008, 2010, 2014 and 2016.
Prior to joining Rush, O’Neil was managing director of the Chicago office of Bank of America’s newly created Healthcare and Not-for-Profit Group, which she was recruited to lead. The group served clients including large multi-state hospital systems, universities and cultural institutions. Previously, she was vice president of First National Bank of Chicago’s Healthcare, Education and Municipal Services Group, during which time she received Series 7 and Series 63 designations. O’Neil received a bachelor’s degree from Mount Holyoke College in South Massachusetts, and a Master of Applied Economics from University of Michigan.
She has served on the board of Sacred Heart School and now serves on the boards of the Mount Holyoke College’s Alumnae Association and Spark Ventures (a non-profit global microfinance organization).
Angelique Richard, PhD, RN, CENP
Angelique Richard, PhD, RN, CENP, has served as chief nursing officer of Rush University Medical Center since October 2016 and for the Rush System since 2018.