Drucker School Announces Changes to Key Programs to Enhance Accessibility and Flexibility
When he looks back on his experiences in graduate school, David Sprott considers himself one of the lucky ones.
Why? Because he had time. Plenty of it.
Two important elements in many graduate students’ lives—children and a 9-to-5 day job—hadn’t factored into Sprott’s life yet. As a result, he was able to stay laser-focused on his MBA and doctorate at Kent State and the University of South Carolina. He organized his life around the often demanding, packed schedules one finds in graduate school.
“I was pretty much one of your traditional, 100%-grad student types,” says Sprott, who is Henry Y. Hwang Dean of the Drucker School of Management. “But that’s not the case for many graduate students. They need more flexibility. That is something that we recognize at the Drucker School of Management, and it’s an issue that needs to be addressed immediately.”
Sprott and his team are introducing significant new changes to the MBA, Flex MBA, and MA in Management (MAM) programs to increase accessibility and flexibility for students, including new modalities that allow for distance learning and a hybrid or fully online experience.
“The way that technology has been used during the global pandemic has demonstrated how it’s imperative to meet our students where they are in ways that older pre-pandemic modes of instruction never could,” said Sprott.
Program Changes & Enhancements
The new changes in the Drucker programs will start this summer and fit into the three following key areas:
- Enhanced accessibility
Although the Drucker School now provides online, hybrid, and in-person course options, new changes will mean that any students in the Flex, MBA, or MAM program can complete their program fully online as well as in combination with hybrid and on-campus options in Claremont.
Applicants to the MBA and MA in Management programs will be able to start in the summer and won’t have to wait until the fall semester to begin their graduate journey. Rather than wait until the fall semester begins in August, they will be able to start every year in May.
- Course flexibility
Electives will be scheduled with accessibility in mind, and summer coursework will be offered exclusively online for all students so they can still spend time away with their families and continue with their studies.
Another course area where more flexibility is being introduced is in the elimination of a concentration requirement for the MBA. That requirement has limited the freedom students had when selecting electives. Concentrations will still be available so that students can focus their studies but will only be encouraged when they support students’ professional goals.
- A Renewed Commitment to Working Professionals
Many of the new program changes reflect the Drucker School’s efforts to support working professionals who have chosen to pursue a graduate degree. As a result, students can better fit the school’s purpose-driven management programs into their busy lives with multiple options suiting their needs and preferences.
In particular, for students in the school’s ranked Flex MBA program, the program will feature a hybrid core that enables working professionals to complete their degree only coming to campus for 10 Saturdays each year. Flex MBA students will also be able to enroll in MBA sections offered in person or online if those suit their schedules or preferences better. This change is designed to support students living outside the region or who have circumstances limiting other options.
In addition, the Flex MBA will now introduce an explicit experience requirement that says all students in the program must have a minimum of six years of full-time professional work experience or the equivalent.
This requirement aims to create a classroom environment in which students sharing similar middle- and senior-level situations will be able to engage in more enhanced discussions and networking related to their professional backgrounds. In addition, the school will permit those with equivalent work experience in other programs to petition into these sections as well.
Maintaining a Vibrant Academic Experience
Regardless of how courses are offered, Sprott says, the objective is to ensure that the intimate academic experience with expert faculty, a hallmark of a Drucker School education, will be maintained across all in-person and online options.
Students will continue to benefit from accessible faculty, diverse peer groups, and the tight-knit community that is so definitive of Claremont.
“I’m very proud of these changes,” says Sprott. “They will ensure that all of our students are provided with the same liberal-arts experience that everyone expects from the Drucker School.”
- Learn more about the MBA, Flex MBA, MA in Management, and other programs at the Drucker School of Management.