If you are an international student or professional seeking an MBA you should consider the United States. American MBA programs are world renowned for giving students a competitive edge in the business world through excellent education, diverse specialized programs and unparalleled networking opportunities and resources.
There are over a thousand MBA programs in the U.S. You will find an array of options to fit just about any need—from specialized degrees to unique programs geared toward international students.
Diversity of MBA Programs
Most American business schools-regardless of the major focus-will train you in the principles of general business management. These principles include a combination of accounting, economics, finance, marketing and statistics, among other topics. American universities also offer a wealth of specialized M.B.A. programs and classes to tailor your degree. Depending on your intended career goals, you'll find programs that offer a more focused approach, including business administration, finance, human resources, information technology, marketing, nonprofit administration, and more.
For instance, at the Edward S. Ageno School of Business at Golden Gate University (GGU) in San Francisco, you can focus your M.B.A. on a variety of areas, including accounting, business administration, finance, general management, human resource management, or international business.
Golden Gate University, as well as many other schools, offers both in-class and online programs that allow for greater flexibility. Online programs can allow international students to earn full degrees and professional certificates without leaving home.
One of the reasons thousands of international students enroll in MBA programs in the United States is because of the diversity of choices and concentrations.
Graduate business students can focus their master’s degree in finance, accounting, entrepreneurship, marketing, business management, supply chain management, global business and so many more. We live in a global market and it is growing. Gaining fresh knowledge and expertise in one area of business will meet an economic need and make you more professionally competitive. Furthermore, an American MBA will show that you have international knowledge and experience.
Regardless of degree specialty, most American business schools will train you in the principles of general business management. These principles include a combination of accounting, economics, finance, marketing, ethics and statistics.
Theory in Practice
At every level, the American higher education system is different. Foundational principles and theories must be taught, but they are only mastered through practice. MBA programs in the United States strongly reflect this teaching philosophy. You will examine real-world case studies and business scenarios in order to devise strategies, business plans, budgets, etc. These types of projects will prepare you for real-life business situations and to approach them with practical knowledge.
“In logistics management class, we had case studies to discuss: Ford company, HP, Ralph Lauren, and so on. We assumed that we were managers and analyzed the problems and solutions. We applied strategies that we learned from the textbook to solve problems. This is a very good part,” explains Boonpa Ing-Anuraksakul, from Thailand, studying Logistics Management at Truckee Meadows Community College in Reno, Nevada.
The majority of MBA programs will have an internship requirement. Internships are an excellent way to really explore your future career and apply your studies. The companies for which you intern are thriving businesses and you will be working in a fast-paced environment. They will have professional expectations of you.
While internships provide you with a practical learning environment, they are a prime setting for networking. Networking is one of the most powerful tools for your career. While you are an intern, take advantage of the opportunity to meet and network with current professionals. They may help you get a job or be your future colleagues.
“An internship is a requirement in my curriculum. I believe this is helpful because the college encourages students to apply the skills outside the classroom and develop experience in the real world before graduating,” says Heejoong Kim, from Korea, studying Management and Marketing at Loyola University New Orleans.
An internship will not only give you valuable experience, you will find that having a reputable American company listed on your resume will be invaluable.
“When I graduate with my MBA, I will be competing in a very global job market. Having experience interacting with people from different cultures I believe will give me an edge in the professional world,” stated Juri Adrianto, from Indonesia, an MBA student in Information Systems at Fairleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck, New Jersey.
University of California, Berkeley, Extension
In less time than it takes to complete an MBA program you can earn a certificate that combines intensive management education with opportunities to apply your knowledge at a U.S. business. The University of California Berkeley Extension’s International Diploma Programs (IDP) gives you three options: a four-month program of study; an eight-month program which is comprised of four months of study and a four-month internship; or the year-long Management and Business Track which incorporates study in two areas of business over an eight month period, plus a four-month internship.
The International Diploma Programs coordinate student internships at a variety of San Francisco Bay Area companies, nonprofit organizations, and government agencies. Most students are placed at small to medium-sized companies so interns have a better chance of building close working relationships giving them a more meaningful internship experience. Student interns have recently worked for a broad range of companies: advertising, computing, entertainment, e-commerce, finance and banking, information systems, healthcare, hospitality, international trade, marketing, public relations, and telecommunications. An internship-related project is integrated into the program. Students have helped build a company's client base by establishing contacts internationally, while another devised a software technology plan for a high-tech music database company.
University of Arkansas
Supply chain management is one of the fastest growing business specialties across the globe. The Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas has created a Supply chain management department where MBA students specialize in this popular career.
In fact, the majority of international students in the Walton MBA choose to specialize in Supply Chain due to the quickly expanding global job market in the field and the international reputation of the faculty. MBA Supply Chain majors study subjects such as modeling, forecasting, transportation strategies and global logistics.The Walton College MBA program also allows them to customize the program with special workshops such as Negotiation Skills, Networking, RFID technologies and Advanced Access. The program also provides one-on-one personal coaching in resume writing, job interview skills, salary negotiations and how to create the best first impression.
Fairleigh Dickinson University
A one-year accelerated MBA with a concentration in Global Business attracts students from around the world to Fairleigh Dickinson University, near New York City, because of its focus on managing a multinational workforce and expanding into global markets. Having met the highest standards, the program is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). The MBA program features a curriculum that covers the models, theories, concepts and practices that successful organizations utilize to gain a competitive advantage within the framework of the global economy. Concepts are brought to reality for students, with structured corporate visits and a 10-day overseas business trip.
Loyola University New Orleans
Loyola University New Orleans M.B.A. program prepares students to become leaders in both for-profit and not-for-profit organizations in the increasingly global marketplace. The program is extremely flexible with student's schedules, allowing them to attend either full-time or part-time. Students are given advanced training in courses, such as: Leadership Dynamics, Ethical and Legal Responsibility, Advanced Financial Management, Global Supply Chain Management, Management Control and Decision-Making and Total Global Strategy. Partnerships with local businesses allow M.B.A. students to apply their studies outside of the classroom. Recently, the Entrepreneurial Consulting class partnered with the South Coast Angel Fund. Students' research and due diligence produced a $500K investment in a Social Media startup company.
HOW TO CHOOSE AN MBA PROGRAM THAT’S RIGHT FOR YOU
1.) THINK ABOUT THE KIND OF ACADEMIC FOCUS THAT IS IMPORTANT TO YOU
By identifying your personal and career goals you’ll help refine the list of schools. You will have a better idea of the educational features and offerings that best suit your needs. Do you want a general MBA degree, or a program tailored toward a specific career goal?
If you aspire to a career in a specific industry you may consider the school’s location. Most MBA programs have relationships with local businesses and community business leaders. Therefore, attending certain schools may provide you with extensive networking opportunities and job prospects within your chosen field. New York City, for example, is one of the major banking and financial centers of the world, while the San Francisco Bay Area is home to many leading technology companies.
2.) IDENTIFY SCHOOLS THAT OFFER PROGRAMS AND SERVICES SPECIFICALLY GEARED TOWARD INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS
Before beginning your application process determine which schools offer special enrollment programs for international students. Most American MBA programs are open to students with a bachelor’s degree from a four-year university in the United States, or an equivalent degree from another country. If you attended a three-year university, you may need to complete preparatory courses in order to enroll in certain MBA programs. Golden Gate University, for example, offers a preparatory program called Bridge that allows international students to enroll in graduate study without completing a second bachelor’s degree.
Many U.S. schools also offer special services to help international students ease into their new academic environments. Along with academics, admissions and advising services for international students (and their dependents) can support integration into the local community. Some schools offer flexible admissions policies.
Please be aware of services and programs that help international students connect with each other, find roommates, and assist with immigration and visa issues. Be sure you know how much guidance you will receive regarding academic and career topics, as well as adjusting to the new academic environment.
3.) LOOK FOR PROGRAMS THAT FIT INTO YOUR LIFESTYLE
Many international students want to capitalize on their time earning an MBA in the United States by experiencing American culture. When you research an MBA program look at the school’s location, as well. Find out about the area, its recreational activities, arts and entertainment programs, historical and sightseeing opportunities.
4.) FOLLOW YOUR DREAM!
International students are an important resource for American students; you provide a global perspective that is becoming increasingly important in our shrinking world. With such a wide range of programs available, you are sure to find a program that will give you the training and contacts to reach your goals.