Fellowship Focus/Program Structure

This one-year fellowship gives postgraduate students a rich, professional learning and working experience in health care operations and administration. Spectrum Health is a leading integrated health system and West Michigan’s largest employer.

The goals of the program include:

  • Develop the problem-solving and decision-making skill sets used in complex health care organizations.
  • Lead or be involved in projects covering a wide range of administrative areas, including finance, human resources, hospital operations, health plan operations, medical group operations, strategic planning, insurance, marketing, information technology, facilities, quality and medical affairs.
  • Enhance leadership and critical-thinking skills by working one-on-one with senior executives.
  • Participate in valuable networking experiences that promote future career opportunities.

The structure of the Spectrum Health fellowship allows individuals to study and work in every area of the health system while also participating in projects suited to their specific interests and career goals. At any one time, a fellow could be involved in projects in finance, information technology and strategic planning—all varying in size and scope.
Fellows report directly to Tina Freese Decker, president and chief executive officer of Spectrum Health.

Under her supervision, fellows work with and participate as members of the senior management team, enabling them to gain experience through interaction with executive leadership. This is accomplished by attending board meetings, attending executive and medical staff meetings, and participating in strategic planning.


Tina Freese Decker, FACHE, is president and chief executive officer of Spectrum Health and will serve as preceptor. Following her administrative fellowship in 2002, she was named system director of planning and strategic development in 2003 and promoted to vice president in 2006. In 2011, Tina transitioned to president of Spectrum Health United and Kelsey hospitals, followed by senior vice president and chief strategy officer for Spectrum Health. In 2014, Tina became Spectrum Health Hospital Group president and served in this role until April 2017, followed by executive vice president and chief operating officer until September 2018.

Tina earned her bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa, and two master’s degrees from The University of Iowa in Iowa City—one in health administration and one in industrial engineering.

About Spectrum Health

Spectrum Health’s vision is to be the national leader for health by 2020, and we are on the right track. Spectrum is the largest not-for-profit health care system in West Michigan with 12 hospitals, 181 service locations and 2,075 licensed beds system-wide. We are the largest employer in West Michigan with more than 26,000 employees and 1,900 physicians and advanced practice providers. Spectrum Health has been ranked among the nation’s best by U.S. News & World Report in its Best Hospitals 2017-18 rankings. It also was recognized as high-performing in five medical specialties.

About Grand Rapids, Michigan

Grand Rapids is located in the heart of West Michigan, on the banks of the Grand River and less than one hour away from spectacular Lake Michigan. It is the second-largest city in Michigan, with a metropolitan population of more than 1 million.

Grand Rapids features most urban amenities with few of the shortcomings. It anchors a strong, diverse regional economy with an affordable cost of living.

The city is a great place for entertainment and recreation. It is home to major museums, cultural attractions, fine restaurants, and sports and entertainment venues. Grand Rapids also boasts abundant golf courses, parks, trails, inland lakes, campsites and ski areas—all within a short drive.

Application Process

To begin the application process, candidates must provide the following:

  • Cover letter and resume
  • Personal statement explaining why the applicant is seeking the Spectrum Health fellowship
  • Official transcripts
  • Three letters of recommendation

Address documents to Tina Freese Decker and mail or email them to:

Lynn Patterson, Executive Assistant Spectrum Health
221 Michigan Street NE, Suite 501, MC060
Grand Rapids, MI 49503

Important Dates

  • Spectrum Health must receive all applications by Monday, September 24, 2018.
  • Those selected will interview in October.
  • The typical start date is between May and July.

More Information

If you wish to speak with a current fellow, contact Claire Fleming at claire.fleming@spectrumhealth.org, or Dave Fife at dave.fife@spectrumhealth.org.