In 2013, the Villanova School of Business (VSB) received a $50M gift from alumnus James C. Davis, founder of Allegis Group, and his wife, Kim. The donation—part of a $600M capital campaign—was the largest in the school’s history and was reportedly “earmarked to improve academic and career advising, increase internship and study abroad opportunities, perform technology upgrades, and provide scholarships,” according to Bloomberg Businessweek. VSB also planned to use a portion of the funds to “beef up its faculty roster to include more professors focused on teaching as opposed to research.”
With a satellite campus in Center City, Philadelphia, VSB specializes in part-time programs for working professionals, allowing them to enjoy the benefits of a full-time curriculum without leaving their job. In this vein, the school offers an accelerated, two-year, part-time Fast Track degree option, which meets twice a week, as well as the more customizable Flex Track degree option, which typically takes three years to complete and accommodates varying course loads.
One advantage of the accelerated option is the opportunity to partake in the school’s two-part consulting practicum project, which includes the “Social Enterprise Consulting Practicum” and the “Global Practicum” capstone courses—each lasting 14 weeks. In the former practicum, students work with local nonprofit organizations to identify strategies in such areas as branding, funding, and membership retention. Alternatively, the latter practicum entails working with a multinational corporation to gain firsthand experience analyzing market issues. VSB also hosts a variety of elective international immersion courses, through which students may travel abroad over winter break or during the summer.
Another MBA for professionals—in this case, specifically those with a background in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM)—is available at Purdue University’s Krannert School of Management. As technical knowledge becomes increasingly relevant across diverse industries, many MBA programs seem to be vying to dominate the intersection of science and management education.
Supplementing its global focus, Purdue University’s Krannert School of Management launched a one-year, full-time MBA program for STEM professionals in 2014, which was designed to bring management education to applicants who possess at least four years of work experience in a technical field.
The specialized STEM program reflects, as Bloomberg Businessweek suggests, the growing role of STEM professionals in entrepreneurship, consulting, and managerial positions. The program’s curriculum entails five modules, including a summer session, that combine a business core and a wide selection of electives with STEM-related case studies and learning projects.