Posts by Alanna Shaffer

Nov 21, 2017 by

Rotman MBAs Take Home Top Prizes in International Business Competitions

roman mba business competition

From Chicago to Amsterdam, MBA students from the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto have been taking top prizes at recent international business competitions.

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Nov 20, 2017 by

Finding The Right Online MBA For You

right online MBA

With so many amazing online MBA programs available throughout the country—and without location making the decision for you—it can seem nearly impossible to choose which Online MBA degree program is right for you.

With the increasingly available option to customize your degree in a particular area of emphasis—just as most full-time MBA programs offer—students can gain a competitive edge in their field without ever having to leave their house. In addition, the kind of specialization offerings at each program may help students narrow down the perfect Online MBA for them. Whether your looking to gain industry expertise in accounting or entrepreneurship and anything in between, understanding the areas of emphasis and structure of each degree can be a big help when confronted with such a vast number of impressive programs to choose from.

We take a look at most in demand concentrations available at each of the schools in MetroMBA’s new Online metro, finding what sets each program apart and may make it the perfect degree for you.

Fox School of Business – Temple University

At Temple University’s Fox School of Business, accounting is seen as much more than just calculating numbers—at Fox, it’s “the language of business.” It’s also the most popular area of concentration for students pursuing their MBA online.

The Department of Accounting at Fox focuses on an intense study of the field of accounting, providing students with several opportunities to gain “real-world” experience in the discipline. This sort of experience provides a competitive edge no matter what career path accounting students choose to pursue, which both include and go beyond public accounting.

In addition to students who choose to concentrate in accounting, the Online MBA at Fox is already strongly rooted in the accounting discipline, with all students being responsible for taking an accounting course as a key part of the degree and its curriculum.

Hough Graduate School of Business – University of Florida

If you are looking for a flexible degree that can expand your entrepreneurship knowledge, the Hough Graduate School of Business’ Online MBA may be the perfect degree for you. One of the four options in which students can focus their degree, Entrepreneurship skills are a core part of the Hough School’s curriculum.

Students looking for a more immersive or even global entrepreneurship experience can also take the courses for their concentration within just one week on campus in Gainesville, or taken during a one week international study trip. Of course, students who don’t have the ability to take a week off for this purpose may choose to pursue their Entrepreneurship electives online, as with the rest of the core courses of the degree.

Kelley School of Business – Indiana University

Students looking to focus their MBA in finance will find themselves in good company at Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business. Studying the discipline with the same highly ranked faculty who teach in the full-time MBA program, online students have the chance to round out their degree with electives that particularly focus on the financial applications of their MBA degree.

One reason the study of finance is so popular for online MBA students at Indiana University may be the opportunity to pursue a dual degree, combining their MBA with an online MA in subjects like Finance, Strategic Management, and Business Analytics, among other options. Such an interdisciplinary degree with a strong finance background will give Kelley graduates a competitive edge as they enter the workforce.

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Kenan-Flagler Business School – University of North Carolina

The Online MBA@UNC provides students with a world-class MBA curriculum that allows students to specialize their degree within one of eight special areas. In high demand at UNC is the Management Consulting degree, which prepares students for positions as business consultants.

Even though online programs don’t typically scream “hands on,”the MBA@UNC is build this way, providing consulting students with ample experiential learning and guided practice to gain the necessary leadership and client management skills for success in the consulting field.

Tepper School of Business – Carnegie Mellon University

The Tepper School of Business, ranked as the second best Online MBA by the U.S. News & World Report, is a top MBA for students interested in specializing in Business Analytics.

Students at Tepper have the chance to set their MBA within a particular track, and with the decision to focus on Business Analytics students will be provided with the necessary skills to transform massive amounts of data into usable and analyses to improve the worlds of both business and technology. Graduates from the Business Analytics track at Tepper have accepted jobs from such companies as Amazon, Microsoft, IBM, McKinsey, and more.

W.P. Carey School of Business – Arizona State University

Students looking to specialize their MBA in Supply Chain Management/Logistics may find the perfect degree at Arizona State University’s W.P. Carey School of Business. With so many of the degree’s core courses centered around logistics- such as ‘Decisions, Market Structure and Games’ or ‘Operations and Supply Management’—MBA students can use their electives to even further customize their degree with courses like ‘Supply Chain Cost/Design Issue, ‘Suppler Management and Negotiations,’ among others.

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Nov 16, 2017 by

Why The Blackstone Group Loves MBA Grads


It’s no secret that pursuing an MBA can help business professionals to open new career opportunities, boost their earning potential, and accelerate their careers. And for those employers that deeply understand the value of an MBA education, these sorts of benefits can be hardwired into a company’s DNA.

At a firm like the Blackstone Group, hiring and using the skills of MBA graduates to improve the company is just part of doing business. In fact, for many of the top investment banking firms in the United States, an MBA is pretty much a requirement for advancement. During a 2015 Korn Ferry executive search for a senior-level investment banker at a top firm, just two of the twenty five top candidates did not possess an MBA.

What is Blackstone?

The Blackstone Group is one of the world’s leading investment firms, with more than 2,300 employees in 25 offices throughout the globe. Founded in 1985 by Chairman and CEO Stephen A. Schwarzman and former Senior Chairman Peter G. Peterson, Blackstone aims to create a positive economic impact and long-term value not just for the companies and investors involved with the firm, but also for the communities in which they are involved.

As of September 2017, Blackstone has $387 assets under management, which include private equity, real estate, credit, and hedge fund solutions.

Why MBAs Love Blackstone

Blackstone is consistently named among the top MBA employers in the country, and it’s pretty clear why: in addition to a high earning potential, the company is well-known for providing autonomy and opportunity early on in a new associate’s career.

“New hires can expect to take on client-facing roles that make them an integral part of the company’s decision-making right away,” said Bronwen Baumgarder, who runs the company’s MBA recruiting program.

MBA degree or no, its clear that Blackstone provides an excellent work environment for its employees. Ranked “Best Place to Work” for three years in a row by Pensions & Investments, Blackstone considers its employees as an integral part of the firm’s identity and culture of integrity. Blackstone also offers many opportunities for both undergraduate and graduate business students to get involved while still in school—through summer internships and even full-time positions—making the firm an ideal place to start your career.

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Life at Blackstone

Graduate students may apply to join Blackstone’s full-time program starting in their second year of business school. Starting in August, the company sponsors recruiting events on university campuses throughout the globe, and students may begin applying for a number of available positions within the company.

The full-time program at Blackstone is open for candidates interested in a full-time role as an analyst or associate. Candidates may apply for multiple groups within the vast company, but MBAs are typically placed within the firm’s restructuring, advisory or private equity businesses. Other possible groups within the company include:

  • Charitable Foundation
  • Equity Healthcare
  • Finance/Accounting
  • External Relations & Strategy
  • Investor Relations/Marketing

Landing a Job at Blackstone

Although Blackstone actively recruits MBA candidates throughout the world, securing a position with this top firm is still highly competitive. Each year, the company typically hires eight to twelve full-time MBAs, which is only a small percentage of the total employee base of more than 1,600. While the full-time program is an excellent way for business students to get involved early, summer internships are another way for talented students to get their foot-in-the-door early in the recruitment process.

The summer internship is a unique experience, typically lasting 10-12 weeks and aimed at students in their first year of business school. The summer interns at Blackstone do a lot more than get coffee—summer analysts and associates are considered an integral part of all deals, transactions and projects throughout the summer. In 2012, thirteen summer interns were hired full-time from top business schools around the country.

First and foremost, the firm seeks talented individuals who demonstrate strong leadership skills and the potential to grow with the company.

“Our corporate culture is very important and we have very little turnover,” Baumgardner told CNN Money. “[S]o longevity is very important to us.”

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Nov 15, 2017 by

Ted Rogers Dean Advocates Closing the Gender Gap by Engaging Men

closing Gender Gap

Dr. Stephen Murphy, dean of the Ted Rogers School of Management at Ryerson University, recently shared his thoughts on the gender gap in business with The Globe and Mail, following a visit from Catalyst Canada.

In October, Tanya van Biesen, Executive Director of Catalyst Canada, recently visited the Ted Rogers School of Management to discuss gender inequality with current MBA students. Founded in 1962, Catalyst Canada has been working for more than fifty years to build welcoming workplaces for women by providing the necessary research, tools, and solutions to create leadership roles for women. “Gender inequality is not a women’s issue, it’s society’s issue,” van Biesen told Ryerson MBA students.

Dean Murphy agrees. “The gender gap is everyone’s problem,” he told The Globe and Mail, noting that only 68 of 142 countries increased their gender gap score throughout the past year, while 74 countries actually moved backwards. According to Murphy, a crucial part in reducing the gender gap lies in not just engaging women—but also men.

In Canada, women hold just 19 percent of S&P 500 board seats. Yet despite constant evidence revealing the benefits of gender and racial diversity in the workplace, 27 percent of directors in a recent survey (97 percent of whom were men) said there was an unnecessary amount of attention placed on gender diversity.

While many organizations and initiatives, such as HeForShe, exist to try to close this gap, dean Murphy emphasizes how important it is for men within a company to also see the importance of reducing the gender gap. At companies like PwC—which was able to increase the number of women in their global leadership team from 8 percent to 47 percent—training involves a discussion of the implicit biases that may lead to gender discrimination.

“Educating leaders on implicit and explicit bias is key to cracking the diversity nut,” Murphy said.

You can read the rest of his article in The Globe & Mail here.

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Nov 15, 2017 by

University of Dallas Students Make Lasting Change Through Capstone Consulting Experience

Capstone Consulting Experience

A group of MBA students at the University of Dallas Satish and Yasmin Gupta College of Business recently made a lasting change for the town of Greenwood, Louisiana, through the university’s Capstone Consulting Experience (CCE).

A team of UD MBA students was put to the task of collecting and and analyzing community input that would ultimately lead to the creation of a new logo for the town. This included extensive market research work to help students “discover what makes Greenwood, Greenwood.” The MBA students conducted online surveys, asked for community input through social media, and attended town hall meetings.

“I enjoyed getting the responses to the surveys and talking with the citizens,” Mary Weisse, MBA ’17, and one of the students on the Greenwood consulting team, said. “The people were interested in moving their town forward—even though there were several points of view on how to do that. On the last day of the semester,w e gave our presentation to the mayor and city officials.

The consulting team of MBA students was the result of the university’s Capstone Consulting Experience, a requirement of all MBA students in their final year. During this project, students will apply their knowledge and skill to an organization as it faces a business challenge.

After the MBA students gathered the research, results were sent to a branding company that designed the new logo around the community input. The logo was revealed at the 38th annual Pioneer Heritage Festival, a community gathering which celebrates the town’s heritage.

“In the Capstone Consulting Experience, we look to help any organization that needs our students’ expertise. In this case, the town of Greenwood didn’t have the resources to hire a marketing research firm, so they turned to us,” commented Scott Wysong, a UD associate professor of marketing who served as faculty adviser for the project. “The mayor and other leaders of Greenwood were very pleased with all of the data collected and the recommendations made by the students.

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Nov 8, 2017 by

Lazaridis MBA Students Learn Sustainable Practices from Unilever Expert

Lazaridis Sustainable Unilever

MBA students at the Wilfrid Laurier University Toronto recently had the opportunity to hear from Catherine McVitty, Specialist in Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability at Unilever, on creating sustainable business practices.

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