Master of Health Administration student, Maggie Schad, nominated for “Sisters in Arms” honor following Women’s History Month.

CPT Maggie Schad, AuD

March is Women’s History Month. It is a time to celebrate all the accomplishments and achievements our female leaders have contributed to society. Since 2015, the University of Cincinnati, in conjunction with the Department of Veterans Programs and Services, has prioritized highlighting this time of year by hosting an annual honors dinner and award ceremony for our servicewomen. The annual Rosa Sanders-Moore Sisters in Arms award is given to UC students who show praiseworthy qualities of military and community service and academic achievement.  “We created the Sisters in Arms program in 2015. Originally, for Women’s History Month, we would just hang photos of UC women veterans around the campus as a way to highlight their service and bring attention to their contributions to the defense of our nation. We decided then to do an awards ceremony as a way to thank our veterans and Sisters in Arms was born.” states Terence Harrison, Director of Veterans Programs and Services. This year, one of our online Master of Health Administration students, Maggie Schad, AuD, was nominated by faculty member and military alumni, Dr. Debra Zevallos, DBH, MHA, FACHE.

A Standout Servicemember and a Standout Student

Schad is a military audiologist and a Captain in the U.S. Army. After commissioning in 2016, Maggie dove headfirst into the world of leadership during her first appointment at Fort Polk in Louisiana. She was named Hearing Program Chief for the entire installation, a significant undertaking. “The autonomy of running my own clinic and an installation wide program immediately upon completing my degree was, again, a challenge, but one I consider myself fortunate to have encountered. It enabled me to learn how to problem solve, find answers, create my own policies and practices, and develop as both a leader and a clinician while serving patients, staff, and my fellow Soldiers,” says Schad.

Schad moved quickly through the ranks, and after completing her Army Captains Career Course, she was assigned her next challenge, this time at Fort Riley in Kansas. “This was a larger installation and came with another unique set of challenges. For a year, I worked tirelessly to establish a hearing conservation program that served more than 20,000 Soldiers and their families…” recounts Schad. In recent years, the military has made it their mission to make its ranks more accessible to women, and Maggie is a shining example of what we can expect from the future of the armed services. As far as her time at Fort Riley, Schad continued, “…I wrote policies that would ensure that the clinic followed evidence-based practices and set a schedule in place for annual retraining for audiologists, technicians, support staff, and units across the installation. My metric of success was that the program would continue to run, even if I was not there to be the constant driving force behind it…”.

CPT Maggie Schad assumed responsibility of the Medical Company at Irwin Army Community Hospital during her Change of Command Ceremony in 2020.

At the end of the summer of 2020, Maggie was selected to serve as the Irwin Army Community Hospital Medical Company Commander. Schad states, “Few military clinicians have the honor of serving as commanders. It is the epitome of being a servant leader, and it has been my most rewarding and challenging job to date.”  She went on to say, “The position is highly demanding in every sense of the word, from the time commitment, emotional investment, mental toll, and physical requirements…”.

In Pursuit of a Master’s Degree at the University of Cincinnati

Fast forward to 2022, Maggie was admitted into the online Master of Health Administration program at the University of Cincinnati during the fall semester. She felt that an advanced degree like this could propel her career in the military even further and set her up for future endeavors in civilian life. When asked about Maggie as a student, Dr. Zevallos stated, “…She is talented, dedicated, and professional, and always gives her best effort on course assignments and activities. She never settles for the surface-level or simple answer and continuously challenges herself to learn and grow. One of my favorite aspects of having Maggie in class is how she draws upon her experience and insight to strengthen our class discussions and adds depth and value through her genuine and engaging interactions with peers”.

CPT Maggie Schad and her husband CPT Fields Stallworth before an airborne operation at the Joint Readiness Training Center.

The University of Cincinnati is a unique player in online education. When online degrees were first created, the industry was dominated by several for-profit institutions like the University of Phoenix, Capella, and Western Governors, to name a few. What sets UC apart is that it adapts its on-campus experience to an online environment. A team of instructional designers formats the curriculum to ensure it is easy to digest from a distance. It simultaneously makes you feel like you are still part of a major university. In talking with Schad, she mentioned, “…I enjoy being on a team, and even though UC’s MHA program is online, the group projects still allow for teamwork and networking with fellow students.”

When asked how an MHA degree will help her in her career, Schad continued by saying, “The MHA degree will help me in my career by providing a solid foundation of knowledge and skills in leadership, management, health systems, and policies. This will give me the confidence to seek out more leadership roles in healthcare and the ability to provide quality services in those roles.”  Program Director Dr. Michelle Chyatte, Dr. Zevallos, and the rest of the faculty are no strangers to ambitious students. That is why they have built a robust alumni network and mentoring program supported by a healthcare advisory board filled with high-ranking members of hospitals and clinics in the greater Cincinnati area.

Recognizing Excellence

Maggie has had a fair bit of success in her career as well. Throughout her time in the military, she has been given several awards. We have compiled an extensive list of Schad’s achievements dating back to 2017.

04/2022 – Expert Field Medical Badge Earned distinction of an Expert Field Medic through graduation from the course hosted by the U.S. Army Medical Center of Excellence.

03/2022 – Meritorious Service Medal For meritorious service while serving as the Medical Company Commander. Captain Schad’s leadership, expertise, professionalism, and selfless service were instrumental to the continued success of the organization’s mission.

05/2021 – Army Achievement Medal For supporting the Irwin Army Community Hospital’s Expert Field Medical Badge selection.

02/2021 – Armed Forces Service Medal For operations performed at Irwin Army Community Hospital in response to COVID-19.

05/2019 – Army Commendation Medal For exceptionally commendable service and performance while serving as the Installation Hearing Program Manager. Captain Schad’s leadership, expertise, professionalism, and devotion to duty are of the highest caliber and distinction.

11/2018 – Certificate of Achievement For exceptionally commendable performance during the execution of the Retiree Appreciation Day at Bayne-Jones Army Community Hospital.

10/2018 – Army Achievement Medal For exceptionally commendable service while serving as the Officer-in-Charge of the 2018 Bayne-Jones Army Community Hospital’s Organizational Day. Captain Schad’s attention to detail and expertise led to a successful event.

02/2018 – Certificate of Achievement For exceptionally commendable performance during the execution of the Retiree Appreciation Day at Bayne-Jones Army Community Hospital.

07/2017 – Joint Service Achievement Medal For commendable service while serving in the Army Audiology Externship Program at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, including being selected to participate in the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center ENT/Audiology MEDRETE in San Pedro Sula, Honduras.

05/2017 – Certificate of Achievement For exceptional achievement in your performance and obtaining a 300 on the April 2017 semi-annual Army Physical Fitness Test.

Maggie’s story and nomination are certainly well deserved and a great example of the caliber of students accepted into the MHA program at UC. With another Women’s History Month at an end, we are proud to highlight the achievements of this exceptional leader and hope it serves as an inspiration to the next generation of female professionals in the healthcare industry and beyond.

Congratulations again to Maggie Schad, AuD.

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