In a changing work scape, business leaders need broad strategic skills to find unique
opportunities that others with a narrow focus might miss. Professional graduate programs that effectively merge data acumen, critical thinking, communication and managerial strategy into innovative thought and practice will produce the next generation of corporate leaders. As the workforce continues to demand strategic thinkers, Clemson University delivers on its promise to innovate the MBA.
Innovation is not simply a “buzzword” in the Clemson University MBA Program. Rather, it’s a commitment to the students and partners to continually improve the curriculum content and education delivery.
For Clemson faculty, innovation is looking ahead to what’s coming next in the world of business to prepare students for a quickly changing workplace. “The content of our coursework is not ‘set and forget,’” explains Associate Dean Gregory Pickett. “We are consistently working with corporate partners to address future needs and trends and develop new ways to deliver content to our students. Our commitment to constantly innovating our program alongside corporate partners has earned us our top ten ranking in student job placement. As a result, we place over ninety percent of students in jobs within thirty days of graduation.”
While other graduate degree programs hone one skill set, the MBA is one of the only degrees to offer a breadth of study to allow students to reset their careers and move into new fields. “The MBA holds so much value for students because it allows for more rapid career advancement or lays the foundation for a whole new career track,” explains Pickett. “Providing a broad focus on relevant workplace skills permits students to move into new roles or change careers completely. Around forty percent of our students change jobs after graduation. While, thirty percent receive promotions and raises before even completing the program — creating an immediate return on investment.” While another degree program may provide a student with one skill for one job, the MBA offers unlimited options for new career paths, positions, interest areas, leadership opportunities, career advancements and increased earnings.
Clemson faculty’s flexibility in facilitating learning is part of what makes the MBA so valuable to students looking to innovate the workplace. “We regularly review our curriculum to keep it as up-to-date as possible with the changing demands of the workforce,” explains Academic Program Director Jane Layton. “Each semester, faculty gather to share best practices and discuss new tools students will need for future advancement.”
In addition to the traditional full-time and part-time Corporate MBA tracks, Clemson has launched specialized concentrations in entrepreneurship & innovation, business analytics and most recently, digital brand communications. “These concentrations are the combined work of our faculty and corporate partners,” explains Pickett. “They are designed around demands that need to be met in the workplace right now, creating highly desired skills.”
Beyond the content itself, Clemson MBA faculty continuously innovates content delivery through in-person, online and hybrid programs. “Even online, our students have unique opportunities to connect with faculty, learn from peers and network with industry professionals,” explains Layton. “With the hybrid track, you truly get the best of both worlds.”
Current online MBA student Adam Lassiter could not agree more. “I’m so happy that I made the decision to go back and get my MBA and even happier that I chose Clemson,” explains Lassiter. “My work/family life is already extremely busy, and the online program has given me the flexibility to truly further my education. The professors are accommodating but challenge us too, which is the ultimate combination for working professionals. Lastly, the relationships I’ve built with other students have been invaluable — so many great professionals from so many industries. You’re constantly learning from them to bring back to your organization. All in all, it’s an awesome program!”
“We see students from all backgrounds, including fields like engineering and computer science, applying to the MBA program because they are looking for a more versatile skill set to move into management roles or entirely new careers,” explains Pickett. “With part-time and online options, these students can earn their MBA degrees while working.”
The MBA holds immense value for students looking to innovate the workplace because it provides the framework and varied skill set to apply critical thinking to any aspect of business and develop a solution. As the number one online MBA program in South Carolina and the number twelve best value online MBA, Clemson leads innovation — providing students with the resources and examples to succeed. As the modern work scape continues to change, innovative thinkers will continue to be in demand to plan the next move.
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