Becoming an HLA Student

Once you have decided that the Healthcare Leadership & Administration program at Winona State is for you, there are a series of steps you must take to get started as an HLA student. Carefully read through what is required of you before, during and after your HLA advising appointment below. For a printout of these steps, download the Becoming an HLA Student Checklist (PDF).

Before Your HLA Advising Appointment: Getting Admitted

Review the HLA website to learn the details about the major and program entry requirements:

From there, fill out the HLA pre-application form. After submitting your pre-application, an HLA advisor will contact you by e-mail to schedule a phone conversation to share additional information, answer your questions and determine whether or not this program may be a good fit for you.

Access the Winona State application online. Declare the "Pre-HLA" (PHLA) major.

If you meet the Adult Entry requirements, please check the box for the adult entry program. (Adult Entry Requirements: minimum of 4 years since completion of high school diploma or GED for students who have not previously enrolled at a post-secondary institution. Transfer students must have a minimum 2.4 GPA from their transfer institution(s) or have a minimum of one year since their last enrollment.)

Be sure to check the application deadline, which is usually 45 days before the semester begins. We highly recommend that you apply early, preferably four to six months before the semester starts.

If you are admitted, you will receive an acceptance letter. With questions contact: Office of Admissions, 111 Maxwell Hall,

Instructions on transferring coursework are available on the Admissions website.

NOTE: If you attended another Minnesota State institution, Admissions can pull your transcripts for you, with your prior authorization. For questions contact: Office of Admissions, 507.457.5100, or

Send an official ACT/SAT score electronically from ACT or SAT, either by choosing us as a school to receive your score when you take the test, or by contacting ACT or SAT to request an official score be sent.  Once you request from the testing company, allow 7-10 business days for score processing.

NOTE: Adult Entry students are not required to take the ACT or SAT test. However, if you do not submit scores you will be required to take Accuplacer examinations for Math and English, if you have not taken equivalent courses at another institution that have successfully met minimum requirements.

If accepted, you will be sent an acceptance letter. 

Classes fill quickly, so make an HLA advising appointment as soon as you receive your notification of acceptance to the university. Appointments can be done over the phone or in person. Plan for one hour. To set up your appointment call 507-457-2315 or email

If you plan to apply for financial aid, begin the financial aid process as early as possible, and be sure to watch for deadlines.

Take a minute to learn about financial aid and how to apply. Then, refer to the HLA Tuition & Financial Aid page for specific HLA tuition and fee information.

Consider your work schedule, which may dictate your availability for coursework. HLA major courses are fully online, but you may also consider classroom-based courses and hybrid courses for your general education needs.

It is recommended that for every online credit, you allow two to three hours of time per week for homework, reading, projects, etc.  Consider the number of credits and plan of study that best meets your needs. Two-year, three-year, and four-year options are available.

The Day of Your HLA Advising Appointment

Collect all paperwork that you received in your acceptance packet from Admissions

Meet with your HLA advisor & complete the initial registration process (in person or via phone)

  • Your HLA advisor will ask you questions related to your educational goals and needs in order to give you recommendations on HLA plan of study, elective courses, and any general education coursework you may need.
  • You will gain access to the WSU web registration system and will create a new password
  • You will be shown how to navigate the web registration system
  • You will be given your registration access code that will allow you to register for classes
  • You will choose courses for which to register for your first semester of classes and either add them to your “Wish List” or actually register for them

To find out the next steps after your HLA Advising Appointment, click here.