Faculty Files: Dr. Yousuf J. Ahmad
By Amy Hellkamp
Recruitment and Promotions Coordinator
Dr. Yousuf Ahmad has been a part of the Health Services Administration Department for more than a decade. A few years after graduating from the program in 1999, Dr. Ahmad was contacted by the recently retired Chair/Director, Dr. Ida Critelli Schick. She asked him to join their team, this time, as an adjunct faculty member. Dr. Schick’s approach was simple: Try it out for one year.
“I could never tell her ‘no,’” says Ahmad. “(Dr. Schick) was my professor. To this day, I could never tell her ‘no.’”
Now, eight years later, he is glad that he said yes.
“(My experience) was phenomenal,” explains Ahmad, who also earned his Doctorate in Public Health from the University of Kentucky. “I learn as much as I teach.”
As an alum and practitioner, Dr. Ahmad is able to do more than just teach a few courses. “I bring the practical side of life, above and beyond the textbook,” he says. In fact, students don’t even own a textbook for his class. It is this real-world experience that he believes makes the MHSA program so successful.
One important characteristic he works to instill in his students is confidence. When Dr. Ahmad first came to the United States he was only 16 years old. By age 23, he was the Chief Information Officer at Group Health Associates in Cincinnati. Quite an accomplishment for someone who says English is his fifth language. “I was always told I could never do it,” recalls Dr. Ahmad. “If I can do it, anyone can.”
But his contribution to the program doesn’t end in the classroom. As the Divisional Senior Vice President and Chief Network Transformation Officer at Catholic Health Partners, Dr. Ahmad is able to give back in a different way. For years, Dr. Ahmad has been serving as a preceptor to MHSA residents.
“As a preceptor, I take a lot of pride and joy in seeing a student contribute to an organization’s mission and apply their learnings in a practical way,” he says.
But the end of this year will mark a new beginning for Dr. Ahmad as he steps away from teaching to focus on his career. “It’s kind of sad for me. Eight consecutive years of teaching more than 300 students . . . it’s very emotional for me.”
Though he will not be physically present on campus following this semester, Dr. Ahmad’s devotion to the program continues. “I’m married to this program one way or another,” explains Ahmad who will continue to serve as a preceptor and even plans on returning to teach someday.