Meet LLM in Health Law Student Coral Rivera
- LLM in Health Law, 2017 JD, Pontifical Catholic University School of Law BA, Pontifical Catholic University
- In-House Counsel, Hospital Auxilio Mutuo, Puerto Rico
Why did you decide to pursue an online degree at Loyola University Chicago?
I am an attorney licensed in Puerto Rico with more than ten years of experience, three of them litigating and counseling clients in the health care industry. After leaving my attorney position for an academic position, I realized my desire to improve my knowledge and skills in the health law field and pursue a career as an in-house counsel or compliance officer. Because I have a full time job and many other responsibilities, I knew the online program at Loyola University School of Law would allow me to pursue in my goals without leaving my family behind. In addition, the health law program includes a compliance concentration, which is essential for any health care attorney.
How has what you learned impacted you in your current position and/or your future career goals?
All I have learned during the live classes, lectures, case scenarios, and discussion boards gave me confidence about my legal expertise in the health law field. In addition, the thesis project really helped me comprehend the impact of fraud and abuse laws for teaching hospitals and other health care entities. My professors’ feedback and support during my courses contributed a lot to my professional growth.
What are the benefits of learning online?
Learning online is the best educational experience I have ever had. First, it allowed me to engage in an exciting new way by connecting with other professionals from different states and countries. Second, I enjoyed sharing experiences with my professors and classmates without leaving my work or family behind. The online program was the only way that I was able to reach my goals from a distance.
What courses did you find most influenced your thinking about your current position or your future career goals?
I think every course influenced in my career goals because they added an important part of my preparation as a health care attorney. The courses that were most helpful to me were: Health Care Compliance, Advanced Privacy Compliance, Fraud and Abuse-Stark Intensive, Conducting Internal Investigations, and the thesis project.
Describe your experience researching and writing your thesis.
The thesis process was demanding. It challenged me because I needed to be very organized, setting short and long term goals to be satisfied with my final paper. It required a lot of effort and commitment, but I never felt alone. My professors were so helpful; their feedback during the process was invaluable. They made me feel very comfortable along the way knowing they were there for me whenever I needed.
Are you planning to pursue (or continue) a career in compliance? If so, what about the field excites you?
Compliance is the core of any organization. I think it is a very exciting field because compliance professionals never stop learning about the rules and regulations that are applicable to their organizations. Also, they are always working with others to improve the policies and procedures to avoid noncompliance. To be successful in compliance requires teamwork and a lot of motivation.