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Renowned and flexible MBA program boosts doctor’s professional growth

(Feb. 1, 2021) For Dr. Guillaume Dumont (’19 MBA), he wanted to continue working full time as a USC School of Medicine orthopedic surgeon and faculty member while pursuing his MBA. 

Engineer strengthens business acumen by completing MBA

(Feb. 10, 2022) Moore school alumna Lacey Wildes (’19 MBA) decided to pursue her MBA so she could expand her experience in supply chain and broaden her knowledge of the business field as an engineer.

PMBA program candidate will be one of first to complete new Strategic Innovation Certificate

(March 2, 2022) Moore School candidate Yolanda Mills (’09 USC economics, ’22 expected MBA graduation) was inspired to learn more about strategic innovation after completing the Strategic Management of Technology and Innovation course.

Women health care leaders leverage an MBA for career advancement

(March 11, 2022) PMBA program alumna Gabrielle Pierce Cranford (’18 USC pharmaceutical sciences, ’20 MBA, ’20 USC Pharm.D.) and candidate Kelley Jordan (’22 MBA expected graduation) take pride in their health care roles. 

USC’s Professional MBA program ranks in top 30

(April 7, 2022) Business Professional MBA program is ranked No. 1 in South Carolina and No. 27 in the country for part-time MBA programs, according to U.S. News & World Report‘s Best Graduate Schools publication for 2023.

Strengthening business acumen to lead in life sciences field

(May 4, 2022) Medical device sales executives solidifying leadership skills with PMBA program. 

From the army to aerospace company

(May 11, 2022) Moore School recent MBA graduate and U.S. Army veteran Sterling Davidson (’22 MBA) is combining the skills from his military background and MBA courses to begin a finance career with an international Forbes 500 aerospace company.

MBA propels engineer to leadership position with Google

(Aug. 17, 2022) Alumnus Kausik Ghosh (’17 MBA) has made the most of the skills he gained in the Moore School’s full-time MBA program.

Gaining multinational insights

(Aug. 30, 2022) PMBA recent graduate Anna Codron (’22 MBA) and PMBA candidate Kyle Radtke (’24 MBA expected graduation) were able to see business through an international lens with a May 2022 global classroom immersion in Vienna and Prague.

MBA alumnus shares tips for owning a successful franchise with aspiring entrepreneurs

(Jan. 15, 2021) Moore School alumnus Kimico Myers (’05 MBA) has utilized the skills and knowledge that he gained from the PMBA program to start his own franchise of a successful national IT company and mentor other entrepreneurs.

Moore School announces standardized test exception for fall 2021 PMBA applicants

(Jan. 20, 2021) In response to the challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the PMBA program has modified its standardized test requirement for the Fall 2021 application cycle. 

Client services manager completing MBA to boost her resume, create promotion opportunities

(Jan. 28, 2021) PMBA student Sandra McNeal ('21 MBA) looks forward to seeing how her degree will assist her in advancing in her career at Nuveen.

MBA alumna rounds out business skills to advance to chief operating officer

(Feb. 4, 2021) Moore School alumna Karen Canup (’20 MBA) decided to obtain her MBA to expand her business knowledge and take on more responsibilities in her position as a chief financial officer. 

Alumna completing her MBA, earns two promotions with technology company in less than a year

(Feb. 12, 2021) PMBA student Tiffany Crumpton (’02 marketing and human resources management) chose to get her MBA because she wanted to enhance her leadership skills and allow for more opportunities for advancement. 

PMBA student obtaining MBA to accelerate her financial services career

(March 8, 2021) PMBA student Stefani Farmer decided to get her MBA so that she will be equipped with the necessary skills and knowledge to advance to a more senior executive role in the financial services industry.

PMBA program alumnus, Marine veteran advocates for military service members, veterans at USC

(March 11, 2021) PMBA program alumnus Jared Evans (’12 USC sport and entertainment management, ’17 MBA) combined his military experience with the business skills he gained from his MBA to lead veteran initiatives at the University of South Carolina.

PMBA program equips entrepreneurs with skills to successfully launch and run their own companies

(March 18, 2021) For Moore School alumna Nancy McCartney (’15 MBA), her MBA skills proved to be an invaluable asset when she started her own business.

MBA provides upward trajectory for former insurance executive

(March 22, 2021) Moore School alumnus Charlie Bagwell (’20 MBA) enrolled in the PMBA program to further develop his business skillset while also continuing to grow in his career and support his family.

Alumnus wields MBA to elevate global career with Bank of America

(March 24, 2021) For Moore School alumnus Alfredo Azpurua (’10 MBA), obtaining his MBA has provided him with the opportunity to progress in his career at Bank of America and undertake more duties and responsibilities on a global scale.

PMBA program propels medical professionals to executive positions

(April 2, 2021) For Moore School MBA and USC alumna Caroline Brown (’11 USC public relations, ’19 MBA) it was a no brainer to go back to school to get her MBA.

PMBA program provides skills for alumnus to acquire role of chief operating officer with growing beverage company

(April 12, 2021) Moore School alumnus Chad Webb (’19 MBA) has utilized the skills and knowledge that he gained while in the PMBA program to advance in his career as the chief operating officer.

Financial advisor gains leadership and management skills with Professional MBA program

(April 15, 2021) PMBA student Dipali Patel ('21 MBA) looks forward to strengthening the skills she has gained from the PMBA program to assist her clients in making smart and informed financial decisions.

PMBA program student promoted to innovation lead for multinational company just ahead of graduation

(May 5, 2021) PMBA student Nathalie Baulain ('21 PMBA) looks forward to taking the skills and knowledge she has gained from the Moore School and implementing them in her career path after she graduates this week.

Chemist diversifies his professional skills with completion of MBA

(May 14, 2021) Moore School alumnus Jack Johnson III (’20 MBA) enrolled in the PMBA program so that he could better understand the business side of his role as a technical specialist at BASF.

U.S. Army veteran, PMBA alumna hired as chief financial officer

(May 21, 2021) PMBA alumna Caroline O’Sullivan (’18 MBA) merged her business and military skills to become a chief financial officer for regional petroleum distribution company Dearybury Oil & Gas Company.

Pharmacy resident pairs Pharm.D. with MBA to eventually open her own pharmacy

(July 6, 2021) Moore School alumna Kiera Diggins Emery (’18 USC pharmaceutical sciences, ’20 MBA, ’20 USC Pharm.D.) applies the business skills that she gained while in the PMBA program in her role as a clinical pharmacist resident at Moose Pharmacy in Concord, North Carolina.

Medical doctor credits his MBA skills with helping his practice withstand effects of COVID-19

(July 21, 2021) MBA alumnus Marcelo Guimaraes (’19 MBA) chose to complete the PMBA program alongside his full-time job as a medical doctor at the Medical University of South Carolina to further develop his leadership skills. 

Surgeon exponentially grows medical practice with acquired MBA skills

(Aug. 13, 2021) USC double alumnus Dr. James Loging (’96 USC biology, ’19 MBA) decided to further develop his business acumen at the Moore School so he could make more informed business decisions for his orthopedic practice and a few other businesses he owns.

Energy company manager strengthening business decision-making and leadership abilities with PMBA program

(Nov. 15, 2021) PMBA program student Conitsha Barnes decided to get her MBA after more than 20 years with Duke Energy Corporation so she could enhance her foundational business knowledge and add to her leadership skills.

Pharmacy, MBA alumna finishes specialty residency, begins executive fellowship

(Nov. 16, 2021) Alumna Gabrielle Pierce (’18 USC pharmaceutical sciences, ’20 MBA, ’20 USC Pharm.D.) just moved to Washington, D.C., for an Executive Fellowship with the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists.

PMBA program opens doors for Domtar senior director

(Dec. 16, 2021) Moore School MBA alumna Vanecia Carr (’20 MBA) has used the skills and knowledge that she has acquired from the PMBA program to broaden her duties and responsibilities in her position at Domtar.

Two PMBA program students work with two SmartState Centers, two South Carolina companies to further new technology applications

(Jan, 15, 2020) The Moore School and PMBA students collaborated with two SmartState Centers and two South Carolina companies to apply new technologies in aerospace manufacturing to prosthetic limbs.

PMBA program prepares Michelin employee for more responsibility

(March 2, 2020) Moore School alumnus Lyderic Champetier (’18 MBA) immediately applied the skills he learned through the PMBA program to his full-time position at Michelin.

Moore School MBA affords alumna advancement opportunities with MUSC

(March 20, 2020) Moore School MBA and USC alumna Caroline Brown (’11 USC public relations, ’19 MBA) earned a new role with the Medical University of South Carolina after she completed her MBA last year.

Moore School announces standardized test exception for fall 2020 PMBA applicants

In response to the challenges many are experiencing due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the PMBA program has modified its standardized test requirement for the fall 2020 application cycle.

Three MBA alumni among most impactful in the state under 40

(May 18, 2020) Three Moore School MBA alumni were named some of the most impactful individuals in the state of South Carolina.

Pharmacy graduate builds on clinical knowledge with MBA

(June 24, 2020) Recent graduate Gabrielle Pierce (’20 MBA, ’20 USC Pharm.D., ’18 USC pharmaceutical sciences) wanted to be a more well-rounded leader as a pharmacist, so she decided to combine her Pharm.D. with an MBA. 

Engineer capitalizes on promotions with skills of his MBA

(July 2, 2020) Moore School and USC alumnus Cedric Green (’15 USC Ph.D., mechanical engineering, ’08 USC Master of Mechanical Engineering, ’02 MBA, ’97 USC mechanical engineering) has realized growth opportunities with large energy companies by combining his engineering skills with his MBA degree.

MBA alumnus relies on degree’s skills to open men’s barbershop and spa in midst of COVID-19 pandemic

(July 28, 2020) Alumnus Landry Phillips (’19 MBA) immediately applied the skills he learned in the PMBA program by creating a business plan for and opening his new business.

PMBA program alumnus applying data analytics skills to multiple industries

(Aug. 31, 2020) Moore School alumnus Joseph Etris (‘15 MBA) has used the skills he learned at the Moore School for a variety of industries.

Moore School announces standardized test exception for spring 2021 PMBA applicants

(Sept. 8, 2020) In response to the challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the PMBA program has modified its standardized test requirement for the spring 2021 application cycle.

MBA presents engineers with a broader scope beyond operations

(Oct. 14, 2020) The skills learned through the PMBA program help engineers have a broader understanding about business and strategic decision making as managers.

Navy veteran combines experience abroad with Moore School MBA skills to lead international teams

(Nov. 10, 2020) Moore School alumnus Matt Pangle (’18 MBA) uses his experiences from being in the U.S. Navy along with skills from the PMBA program in his role at Global Lending Services LLC.

MBA alumnus and U.S. Army veteran takes on military staffing company COO role amid COVID-19 outbreak

(Nov. 11, 2020) Moore School alumnus (’18 MBA) and U.S. Army veteran Dave Duffy was already an entrepreneur when he enrolled in the PMBA program, but he credits his courses with helping him more successfully run his businesses.

PMBA program enhances leadership, management skills while students work full-time positions

(Dec. 10, 2020) Whether you are seeking advancement within your company, a career change or the opportunity to launch your own business, a comprehensive MBA education is one of the best ways to get there. 

Double alumna enjoys flexibility, diversity of programs

(Feb. 12, 2019) Caroline Jones (B.S. ’08, PMBA ‘15) did not stop with her bachelor’s degree — she completed the Professional MBA program in 2015 while working a full-time job. 

New Professional MBA site will serve military community in Beaufort area

(May 8, 2019) The Darla Moore School of Business is opening an eighth Professional MBA regional site at Parris Island Marine Corps Recruit Depot in Beaufort.

PMBA alumnus finds growing success with his jet sharing sales company

(Sept. 17, 2019) Glenn Gonzales ('13 MBA) has combined his experience with the Air Force, flying and sales with his Professional MBA program business skills to launch Jet It.

MBA candidate appreciates program flexibility with new executive job and busy family life

(Oct. 25, 2019) Moore School student Nicholas Fernandez ('19 MBA) intends on finishing his final five classes even while balancing a new leadership role, being a husband and parenting three young children. 

Veteran combines military skills with MBA degree to land challenging position

(Nov. 7, 2019) Moore School alumnus K. Derrick Brosius ('18 MBA) transformed a military career into a successful business career with the help of the Professional MBA program. 

Moore School recruiting more military veterans to pursue MBAs at USC

 (Nov. 7, 2019) The Moore School implemented a military MBA initiative to encourage more military veterans to pursue their MBAs at the University of South Carolina.

MBA alumna uses international experience to gain Michelin promotion

(Dec. 19, 2019) Moore School MBA alumna Erika Davis (’18 MBA) has already seen her hard work pay off.

With the University of South Carolina PMBA program, a well-respected MBA is closer than you think.

You don’t have to amass huge amounts of student debt to earn a quality business degree. The best part, with eight classroom sites and a flexible, distance-learning format, the Professional MBA program allows you to access your coursework in your region.

While the Darla Moore School of Business is physically located on USC’s main campus in Columbia, South Carolina, seven distant classrooms join the Professional MBA program classroom in Columbia. Professor Bob Lipe, the faculty director for the PMBA program, said the “telepresence” technology used in the PMBA program allows students to learn alongside their peers, even if they are situated in various locations across the state.

“In my class, students attending in Greenville, for example, feel like they are in one big classroom where they can gain insights from me in Columbia or another student in Charleston, even though we are many miles apart,” Lipe said. “Yet, when it is time for an in-class group exercise, the Greenville students huddle with their colleagues in the classroom for in-person debate of the problem I have assigned. The experience is like being in a classroom where all of the students are learning together without the long drive to Columbia each week.”

Further, if a student’s work schedule or other commitments interfere with their ability to be present in one of the live classrooms, a web-based platform for lectures is available. This allows students to be a part of the class from wherever they may be. During the spring 2020 semester, Lipe said he had a student complete his course via the web-based platform from Wuhan, China.

The web-based platform allows students to attend sessions from virtually anywhere. Nicholas Fernandez, a PMBA student who enrolled in the program when he lived in Charlotte, North Carolina, received a professional promotion in the middle of his MBA coursework that required him to move to Florida. Fernandez was able to complete the program virtually; he plans to graduate in summer 2020.

“As you can imagine, this promotion was a great opportunity for me as it was a chance to participate in an executive role at a regional level,” Fernandez said. “Luckily, I have full flexibility to complete the PMBA program, but I definitely rely on the remote connectivity [to complete my coursework].”

Lipe added that the synchronous component of the PMBA courses, which allows students and professors to interact during every session, is far superior to fully asynchronous online programs offered by some competitors. Even if students’ schedules prohibit them from attending the live sessions, they can watch the replay of the course and still benefit from the live instruction.

Whether class is attended live from a distant classroom, your own home or a different country, the Moore School PMBA program allows working professionals like you to earn a valuable MBA degree that can advance your career.

Taking on the work associated with earning a graduate degree while maintaining a full-time job may sound daunting, but the flexibility of the University of South Carolina’s Professional MBA program allows students to find a balance between their course work, career and personal life.

“The nature of the program helps you develop and hone time management and prioritization skills,” said Thomas Victa, a PMBA candidate who began the program in 2018. “Working a full-time job while in graduate school is a challenge, but the PMBA program is designed to help you manage your time.”

PMBA student Nicholas Fernandez has three young children and accepted a leadership promotion at First Citizens Bank during the final stretch of his PMBA coursework. Fernandez relocated to Boca Raton, Florida, in fall 2019 and is completing the remainder of the PMBA program remotely while overseeing the integration of two banks into the First Citizens Bank system.

“Flexibility has become key in my life as things change routinely and I have to adapt,” Fernandez said. “Time slots are limited, so I try to make the most of my schedule and catch up on the weekends. I have full flexibility to complete the PMBA program, but I definitely rely on the remote connectivity. I also routinely travel back to Columbia, South Carolina, for the Saturday sessions when I can.”

The blended learning format of the PMBA program allows students to complete their courses while managing the demands placed on today’s working professionals. Fernandez said that, due to the time commitment that the bank mergers require during the workday, he often does not begin his schoolwork until after dinner.

“Balancing a family, my new role and graduate school has been extremely challenging,” Fernandez said. “Effectively, without the flexibility of the PMBA program, I don’t think it would have been feasible for me. The balance lies in effective time management, sticking to a routine/schedule, prioritizing deadlines/tasks/projects well in advance, flexibility to adjust and adaptability.”

Erika Davis, a 2018 PMBA program graduate, is also thankful for the flexibility she experienced while completing the program. Now RDI North America logistics coordinator at Michelin, a promotion she earned while completing the PMBA program, Davis managed her coursework while raising her then-10-year-old daughter, Alessa.

“Finding work, home and school balance required a lot of sacrifice,” Davis said. “In the beginning, it was more of a challenge to find how all aspects of life and the new challenge of the PMBA program would fit together. By the second semester, a routine formed, and time management was a key factor in the driving success of course work.”

Finding immense success from her perseverance through the PMBA program, Davis said she is grateful that the program allowed her to “show my daughters that you can accomplish anything you want if you put in the work.”

“Professionally, [the PMBA program] has shown me that I can manage my time and put in the work to succeed at the tasks presented. It has opened doors for new job positions to advance in my career,” she said.

The PMBA program at USC’s Darla Moore School of Business offers a flexible, accessible MBA for professionals from all industry backgrounds who are looking to gain the skills and networks needed to accelerate their career.

Are you ready to advance your education and career and apply for the University of South Carolina’s Professional MBA program? Applying for the PMBA program requires a bit of planning on your part, but the process is not as intimidating or time consuming as you may think. Plus, with the fall 2020 round-three application deadline on July 15, 2020, there is still plenty of time to prepare and submit your application.

As you prepare to apply for the PMBA program, consider these steps to help you simplify the application process.

Begin compiling your transcripts from your previous educational institutions. Unofficial transcripts are accepted for the PMBA application, so reach out to the institution if you don’t have an updated version of your transcript.
Identify and reach out to individuals who will write your recommendation letters. The PMBA program requires two recommendations, so it is a good idea to begin engaging early with the people who will write your references.
Determine your GMAT (Graduate Management Admissions Test)/GRE (Graduate Record Exam) status with the Moore School.In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, any PMBA candidate that can demonstrate strong academic performance and quantitative skills may apply for fall 2020 admission without GMAT or GRE scores. Learn more about test exception requirements.

If you need standardized test scores to strengthen your application, both the GMAT and GRE are currently offering virtually proctored exams, so there is still time to fulfill this application requirement. You may submit your PMBA application and send in your test scores after you receive them. Candidates who have previously taken the GMAT or GRE may submit those scores; GMAT and GRE scores remain active for five years.

Once you have gathered your transcripts, recommendations and test scores (if needed), you are ready to begin applying for the PMBA program.

May 2020 PMBA graduate Karen Canup attended an information session, applied for the GMAT/GRE waiver and was accepted into the program in a matter of weeks.

“The application process was very simple. I attended one of the information sessions at the USC-Upstate campus, and the recruiter who hosted the session was very helpful in guiding me through the process,” she said. “It seems very intimidating to take on the challenge of the PMBA program while in the midst of a full-time career, but it is an awesome learning experience and so worth the effort!”

If you have questions about the application process or the program in general, you should contact a PMBA recruiter.

The part-time Professional MBA program at the University of South Carolina Darla Moore School of Business offers students the opportunity to earn an MBA degree with flexibility, affordability and access to industry-experienced faculty.

The program, designed for working professionals with at least two years of professional experience, can help you secure a promotion, gain insight into your industry and expand your business knowledge.

The top-ranked part-time MBA program in South Carolina, the Moore School’s PMBA program is ranked the number 23 program in the United States by the U.S. News and World Report. This highly accessible program works with your schedule and allows you to complete your coursework in tandem with your work schedule. Because PMBA sessions are held in the evenings and on select Saturdays, you can attend class after work and then apply what you learned the next day at the office.

With eight educational sites across South Carolina and Charlotte, North Carolina, the USC PMBA program allows students to experience most of what the full-time MBA program offers with flexible course options. As a PMBA student, you can virtually attend class or download recorded lectures and watch them on your own time, so you don’t have to sacrifice attending courses if you travel for work or have other obligations.

Even if you chose to complete the program virtually, you are still able to go to one of the eight sites to network with other students and engage with professors.

“The class delivery format is the best compromise — nothing is quite as good as sitting in the real classroom, in my opinion, but the live class through TVs at the remote sites is very good,” said Lyderic Champetier, a Michelin service operations account manager who graduated from the PMBA program in 2018. “The option to take the classes live through Blackboard Collaborate is far superior to an online, non-live delivery.”

Many of the Moore School’s faculty members are actively engaged in industry and work with Fortune 500 companies. This means that what you learn in the PMBA program is relevant, fresh and immediately applicable to your career.

“The richness of experience and skill building in the PMBA program has provided a really powerful stepping-stone for me in my career progress,” said Tiffany Crumpton, a marketing director who is currently enrolled in the PMBA program. “The talent caliber of my fellow students and the faculty has truly blown me away and encouraged me to power up my level of engagement and learning.”

Through applying the knowledge they learned in the program, many PMBA candidates have earned job promotions during and after completion of the program. Carolina Brown, for example, was promoted to chief external affairs officer at the Medical University of South Carolina after earning her MBA in 2019.

“Without the Professional MBA, it would have been difficult to continue to progress in my career and especially to earn a role in the C-suite,” Brown said. “The program helped round out my business acumen and ensured that I can speak the language of colleagues and external partners who work in essential functional areas including finance, operations, marketing and quality. I improved my negotiation and leadership skills, which I use on a daily basis to influence decisions and create partnerships, affiliations and joint ventures with outside groups.”

Additionally, since Moore School PMBA program students pay tuition based on the number of credit hours they are enrolled in, the program is a tremendous value. The total cost of tuition to earn the MBA is less than $40,000, which is highly competitive with other part-time MBA programs across the nation. This allows students to receive a high-quality degree at an affordable price. What’s more, out-of-state students in areas like Augusta and Charlotte pay in-state rates. “If you’re considering an MBA and think it will help advance your career or personal goals, start now,” Brown said. “The time is going to pass regardless, and you will be so glad you didn’t wait any longer to begin your journey.”

The International MBA program at the University of South Carolina Darla Moore School of Business is again ranked the nation’s best according to U.S. News & World Report’s Best Graduate School 2020 Rankings. The program has been ranked in the top three for 31 consecutive years and No. 1 for the past seven years.

The 22-month International MBA program begins annually in July and features two tracks of study: the Global Track for in-country immersion where English is widely spoken or the Language Track for immersion in an international environment that includes language study.

“Ranking as the No. 1 International MBA in the nation is a credit to our outstanding faculty and the educational excellence of our program,” said Darla Moore School of Business Dean Peter Brews. “The Moore School is committed to delivering exceptional business programming that not only prepares graduates for future career success but teaches them the value of teamwork, integrity and resilience and hard skills like data analytics and understanding international marketplaces so that they can better lead and make a difference in corporations around the world.”

“The No. 1 ranking showcases our commitment to prepare students to compete in global marketplaces,” said Satish Jayachandran, Moore School associate dean for full-time MBA programs and marketing department chair. “Our international business faculty are experts in their fields, and our students go on to have successful and high-level careers with an array of multi-national companies.”

Another Moore School standout according to the rankings is the part-time MBA program. The first of its kind when it launched in 1970, the program is the No. 1 program in South Carolina and is among the top 25 programs in the nation. The Professional MBA program is currently ranked at No. 23 for part-time MBA programs, according to the 2020 U.S. News & World Report publication.

“Having our Professional MBA program rank in the top 25 part-time MBA programs is an amazing accomplishment,” said Brews. “The innovative, multi-location classroom offerings, combined with stellar teaching and networking opportunities, ensures that our graduates gain the preparation needed to become the impactful and highly productive business leaders that companies seek.”

The Professional MBA program’s flexible, part-time format allows professionals to complete their MBAs while continuing to work. The program can be completed in 28 months with start dates in both January and August. Regionally networked classrooms connect students with peers across eight different locations on Saturdays and evenings, and on-demand access – real-time and delay – enables students to take classes on their own schedule.

Learn more about our top-ranked International MBA or Professional MBA or other MBA programs at the Darla Moore School of Business.

Marjorie Riddle Duffie

There’s a good reason more than 200,000 students earn a master’s degree in business each year.

At first blush, you might think their goal is to boost their earnings or accelerate their career. But there’s often much more that comes with the degree.

An MBA Fulfills Higher-Level Needs
Abraham Maslow is one of the most influential psychologists in modern history. In studying humans’ desire to live the best life possible, he discovered our needs had different levels. Once foundational needs are met — food, shelter, safety, love and belonging — our attention can turn to two higher-level needs: esteem and self-actualization.

With basic needs secure, we can focus on aspirational needs such as personal growth, confidence and achievement. That explains, in part, why the MBA is one of the most popular graduate degrees. Not only are there limited ways to leapfrog to the top of the pyramid, with an MBA, you can do it in just a year or two. That alone is powerful ROI.

But your definition of esteem and self-actualization is yours alone. Someone with a strong passion for entrepreneurship, for example, might be influenced by a need for independence. Someone who seeks employment at an elite consulting powerhouse could be driven by prestige. Another peer may be motivated by the desire to know that their work is appreciated and recognized.

That also means the ROI of your MBA begins with an understanding of your unique values and priorities.

An MBA Offers Unparalleled Career Exploration
The first step in securing any dream job is to make sure the job is exactly that. What you think you want to do and what you will enjoy doing are not always the same thing. And it’s better to find that out before you accept a job offer.

That’s why the Darla Moore School of Business integrates the Birkman Method, a multi-dimensional scientific assessment. This approach is the one trusted by many Fortune 500 companies to identify a person’s underlying needs and motivations, interests and expectations, and occupational focus. The Birkman Method can also help you crystallize your business interests or open your eyes to career avenues that you didn’t even know existed. Throughout your time in the program, your Birkman results are customized guidance we use to create an interview-ready resume, compelling LinkedIn profile and even your elevator pitch to employers.

Beyond Birkman, you’ll work with individual career coaches who will help you with career exploration and job search strategies. You’ll also have the opportunity to network with employers at exclusive MBA recruitment fairs.

An MBA Is Your Ticket to Elite Employers
There’s an old adage: You can tell a lot about someone by the company they keep. And the same can be said of business schools.

In the past four years, our graduates have been hired by leading global companies such as Accenture, Amazon, Bank of America, BMW, Boeing, Coca-Cola North America, Credit Suisse, Deloitte, ExxonMobil, Google, Honeywell, IBM Global Services, Michelin, Mondelēz and UPS. We also place students in firms that may not be as widely known, but offer equally exciting opportunities in consulting, finance, technology and other in-demand industries.

The Moore School never stops cultivating employer connections. In fact, our employer team is on the road throughout the year, meeting companies in major metropolitan areas such as Atlanta, Charlotte, Houston, New York City and other top job markets.

An MBA Invigorates Your Personal Network
Some business schools boast about the size of their alumni network. Frankly, we don’t blame them. After all, we’re pretty proud of our more than 45,000 Moore School alumni, which include leaders at more than 100 top-performing global companies.

Yet we know that impressive numbers aren’t enough. You need an alumni network made up of people who will promptly answer your career questions and earnestly introduce you within their companies.

The Moore School maintains strong relationships with students well beyond graduation. We can connect you to alumni who can be most helpful in your career search. Our strong alumni relationships are a super highway of opportunity for you. We’re equally proud that Moore School alumni maintain involvement with our program. We often know about internship and job opportunities before the marketplace ever does.

An MBA Doesn’t have to be Extravagant
Finally, there’s no ROI equation without calculating the cost of the investment. That’s why we provide generous scholarship and fellowship packages and offer the option to spread your program payments out over your total enrollment.

As you consider the net cost, we also encourage you to ask another question: will this program offer the same placement outcome as another program, but at a more sensible cost?

The ROI of your MBA will ultimately depend on the amount of effort you put into your studies and career search. But one thing is 100 percent certain. You’ll have our support at every stage of the program to achieve the greatest return possible.

Jeff Rehling
30 Years of Marketing & Consulting Experience
Clinical Faculty – Marketing
Director, Center for Marketing Solutions

Many students I meet with know the value of learning from a leader in global business. What they’re far less sure about is which type of MBA program is right for them.

Before I discuss degree options, I want to understand two aspects of your pursuit: why you want an MBA and what you hope it will do for you. Between my experience and your answers to these two questions not only will a degree path emerge, it’ll be one that fits your career goals, experience and time requirements.

While the process is not as cut and dry as it sounds, this career reflection, goal establishment and long-term planning is imperative to completing your MBA on-time and with the most value for your investment.

Here’s how we get you thinking through these key questions to find the degree that fits your goals, plans and timeline.

1. Think about your career focus and answer the following questions:

  • What do you like about your current position?
  • What do you dislike about it?
  • Would adding concentrated business knowledge and expertise to your current experience enhance your career?
  • Would global business expertise open up additional opportunities for you?
  • Do you seek to increase your leadership potential?
  • Are you where you want to be industry-wise, but want to skip a few rungs on your career ladder?

2. Think about what you’d like to gain through your MBA studies:

  • Would you like to learn another language and gain higher-level fluency through international immersion?
  • Do you want international experience that has the potential to create global career opportunities?
  • Do you want to acquire specialization in a functional area of business such as finance or supply chain management?
  • Would you like the opportunity to enhance your degree with graduate or industry certificates in specific areas?

3. What are the advantages for me to study at the University of South Carolina?
Some schools will have specific advantages when you consider your unique interests, timeline and educational goals. Here are points to consider:

  • South Carolina is consistently a top state for foreign direct investment so you’ll have a path to multiple Global 100 company headquarters as well as the service providers and manufacturers that support them.
  • Our MBA curriculum incorporates projects with corporations and business entities through our university’s nine Research and Partnership Centers.
  • You’ll join a tightly knit alumni organization featuring leaders at more than 100 top-performing companies including Accenture, Amazon, Apple, Coca-Cola, Delta, ESPN, Johnson & Johnson, L’Oreal, Microsoft, New Balance, Siemens, Starbucks, Wells Fargo and more.
  • In the past four years, our graduates have been hired by companies such as Bank of America, BMW, Boeing, Credit Suisse, Deloitte, ExxonMobil, Google, Honeywell, IBM Global Services, Michelin, Mondelēz, UPS and Zulily
  • You’ll be part of a school community that cares as much about you as a person as your personal success.
  • You’ll live in a vibrant city recently ranked among the Top 50 “Best Places to Live” by U.S. News & World Report.

4. What can you realistically afford from a financial perspective?
Here, you’ll have choices and opportunities that can make your education more affordable or enhance the value of your degree, such as:

  • If you’re on a short timeline due to a career transition or change, our one-year MBA can offer significant ROI.
  • If you’re seeking greater global opportunities, our International MBA was one of the world’s first International MBA programs and remains the #1 program in the country according to U.S. News & World Report.
  • Nearly 100 percent of our incoming classes receive scholarships, fellowships or some level of financial support and the most qualified can earn awards of up to 100 percent.

While there are many choices to be made as your MBA journey begins, know that at the University of South Carolina you’ll have a team alongside you for guidance, insight and support. As you work through your degree and specialization decisions, your application and admission, our team — from fellow students to program administration and faculty to alumni mentors — is here to help you.

You don’t have to be an applicant to get started. Just email me or call me at 803-777-7903 to discuss your career aspirations and plans.

Jennifer Ninh
Managing Director, Full-time MBA Programs

If you look on my resume, you might notice that I haven’t always been a faculty member or an educator, for that matter. Before I became a full-time faculty member at the University of South Carolina’s Darla Moore School of Business, I’d spent 25 years in marketing strategy development for real-world businesses. While I don’t have a doctorate in the academic sense, I joke that those 25 years were a Ph.D. in the ‘real world.’

One thing I learned in more than two decades in business is some things simply can’t be picked up from a textbook or in a classroom. This dynamic is what I often call the art and science of marketing. Yes, science can answer many questions but, frequently in the business world, there’s some degree of art also needed to create successful outcomes. But teaching such instinct and skill isn’t easy. How do you teach creative thinking, agility, curiosity, independence, resiliency and relationship building? Certainly techniques and tools help, but I believe the best way to build these artistic skills is through practice and application. The answers to marketing questions don’t always live in textbooks; they live inside you. You have to leverage this combination of art and science to identify a winning solution, to communicate it and ultimately lead it to successful completion.

In teaching my students, I bring the real world into the classroom every day, through direct connections to a real client, a real marketing problem or a real learning opportunity. While some schools talk about experiential learning, at the University of South Carolina, we embrace and integrate it throughout our curriculum.

The Moore School of Business features nine Research and Partnership Centers for experiential learning and I’m fortunate to lead the Center for Marketing Solutions. Other research centers include the Operations and Supply Chain Center, the Risk and Uncertainty Management Center, the Folks Center for International Business, the Center for Executive Succession, the Center for Applied Business Analytics, the Center for Sales Success, the Riegel & Emory Human Resources Center and the Faber Entrepreneurship Center. Each center is committed to deepening our relationship with leading companies to ensure the Moore School’s programs provide the absolute best experience for our students, the next generation of business leaders.

As an example, in the Center for Marketing Solutions, we reach out to organizations and build direct connections between our faculty, students, courses and our corporate partners. Learn more about our collaborative approach and see ways we harnessed our connections in 2017:

  • Corporate partners such as Textron, FedEx, Ingersoll-Rand, Sonoco, Lionsgate Entertainment and Coca-Cola Bottling provided our center with projects each semester that were integrated into our courses.
  • Dozens of marketing and sales executives spoke in our classes and shared the current state of their industry, along with their company’s unique business and marketing challenges. These sessions feature cases, simulations and networking, all led by our corporate partners.
  • The Center for Marketing Solutions advisory board includes more than a dozen senior executives who meet annually to review our curriculum, interact with faculty, help us identify new corporate partners, and share hiring opportunities for both student internships and full-time jobs.
  • Our students are invited to attend the University of South Carolina CMO Summit, an annual event featuring as many as eight senior marketing executives speaking on current topics, networking with our students and participating in panel discussions. The 2017 event, co-hosted by Forbes, featured speakers from Disney/ESPN, Nationwide Insurance, IBM Watson and Coca-Cola.

The marketing discipline and the business world overall is transforming at a pace we’ve never seen before.  The opportunities, challenges and tools we have today will be very different in 10 or even five years. We can’t predict the future so our efforts to formalize experiential learning are a critical piece of our curriculum, not because we don’t believe in the science but because the art is more important than ever.

As you’re researching options, pay particular attention to a formal connection to the real world.  Our commitment to you is to provide the optimal balance of art and science so you can successfully impact the real world today and tomorrow.

Jeff Rehling
Clinical Faculty – Marketing
Director, Center for Marketing Solutions 

There’s a great deal of information about business schools in the digital sphere. That means you’re one search query away from a pipeline of information and advice — much of it conflicting. So where can you turn for advice about choosing a business school knowing that even the most well intentioned co-workers, friends and family can have biased opinions?

That conundrum is one reason media rankings are so popular. In the search for an objective third party, many prospective students rely on publications such as Bloomberg Businessweek, Financial Times, Forbes, Poets & Quants, The Economist, The Princeton Review, or U.S. News & World Report.

But even in these publications, “experts” often disagree. Results vary widely depending on the publication or even the year. That’s why one of the most common questions I’m often asked is about our rankings and what they mean.

Here are four things you need to know about MBA rankings.

1. Each media ranking is based on a different methodology.
Comparing one ranking to another is like comparing apples to oranges. They’re all different. Some rankings place more weight on corporate recruiter surveys. Others factor test scores of admitted students. The variance in criteria among rankings is what leads to different results.

U.S. News & World Report, which ranked the University of South Carolina MBA #1 for international business in 2017, calculates its specialty ranking of the best business schools according to ratings by business school deans and directors of accredited MBA programs. It considers the opinions of industry leaders who are deeply immersed in the business school sector on a daily basis and have an extensive purview of best practices. They attend numerous conferences around the world to share knowledge about exceptional programs with cutting-edge curriculum or subject matter expertise. In other words, they know which business schools excel in international business, and rank programs accordingly.

2. Media rankings are multidimensional.
Many prospective students focus on the total ranking of a particular program, but it’s equally important to look at individual components. For example, the Financial Times considers 20 different criteria in their overall ranking.

In their 2017 ranking, the University of South Carolina MBA program is ranked in the top 40 in the U.S. (#77 in the world). With respect to the individual criteria, we’re ranked:

  • No. 1 in the world for international course experience
  • No. 2 in the world for percentage of female MBA students
  • No. 2 in the U.S. for international mobility for MBA graduates

Dig deeply into cumulative rankings for metrics that are meaningful to you. That single overall number is sometimes strongly influenced by factors that may be inconsequential to you.

The Financial Times calculates 20 percent of their ranking on the increase in alumni salaries, but only 3 percent on alumni aims achieved — the extent to which alumni fulfilled their stated goals or reasons for doing an MBA.

You may be considering an MBA because you want to work at a startup or in social entrepreneurship like Kate Williams, 2015 MBA. Before attending the Moore School, Kate was a microfinance consultant and business project manager in the Peace Corps in Nicaragua. Today, she’s an impact manager at Fair Trade USA in Oakland, California. Alums like Kate achieve their stated goals yet their chosen career path is “worth” less in the Financial Times ranking.

3. You need to take a long-term view of rankings.
We’ve proud to be ranked in U.S. News & World Report as one of the top 3 graduate international business programs for 28 consecutive years, but it’s important to note that media rankings fluctuate year to year for trivial reasons. For example, an editor may modify the ranking’s methodology or expand the number of schools included. Changes like these can realign programs from previous rankings.

A school can even inadvertently omit a data point the survey as one top business school did. They dropped nine points in a major ranking last year. Rankings can be unpredictable so it’s critical to take a long-term view.

4. Some schools don’t even get ranked or drop out of rankings for good reason.
Schools may not be eligible to participate in some rankings based on the longevity of their program or class size, among other reasons. If your targeted MBA program is small by design, the advantages of that small, tight cohort and network may not be as apparent if you’re evaluating purely by ranking.

Often, schools simply choose not to participate in rakings. It takes a lot of internal resources to manage and submit surveys required by ranking organizations. While larger business schools may have a staff person dedicated to coordinating and managing rankings year-round, smaller schools invest those resources into services that benefit students such as scholarships or strengthening employer relations in major cities.

You may have noticed that the Moore School isn’t included in the Bloomberg Businessweek ranking.

Marcelo Frias, managing director of Full-Time MBA Programs, explains why. “Bloomberg Businessweek calculates its’ ranking, in part, based on a minimum amount of survey responses from alumni. That’s always going to be easier to achieve for programs with hundreds of students,” he says. “Our intentionally small class size impacts our ability to meet these thresholds. As a result, our high level of alumni satisfaction doesn’t get reflected in this ranking. Instead, we communicate it through stories on our website and social media channels, and are always happy to connect prospective students to chat directly with alums.”

Suffice to say that there’s a lot more to rankings than meets the eye. Look into our rankings and then talk to us. In fact, you can email me or call me at 803-777-0262. I’m happy to any questions you many have about rankings or, even better, discuss how our placements can impact your career aspirations and plans.

Jennifer Ninh
Managing Director, Full-time MBA Programs

When you step in your first class at the Darla Moore School of Business, you’ll notice something different right away. Your cohort wouldn’t fill up an auditorium. Our average cohort size is 40 to 50 students. And that’s good for you on several levels.

Our priority isn’t enrollment quotas. We created the Moore School to be an environment that’s conducive to personal interactions and relationship building. Here’s why.

Whether you work in business development or finance, it’s relationships that drive business. So we ensure our students have space to collaborate and lead with ample opportunities to practice their business skills.

As part of that process, we know you’ll need to understand yourself as deeply as you understand others. You’ll need to experience different situations — including stressful ones — to know how you’ll respond or adapt.

Self-awareness is so important in business that we employ the Birkman Method, a multi-dimensional scientific assessment trusted by many Fortune 500 companies for providing the highest insight into people’s motivations, perceptions and behaviors.

In your first weeks as Moore School student, you’ll take a Birkman assessment to identify your personal perspectives in key areas including behavioral styles, underlying needs and motivations, stress behavior, interests and expectations, and occupational focus.

Throughout your program, you’ll work one-on-one with career coaches to address these insights, and use them to guide decision-making and identify your preferred work environment.

Your Birkman insights can even shed light on job offers. If you have two job offers, its easy to see which would best align with your workplace needs and preferences, and which might offer you the greatest opportunity for personal success.

The Birkman Method isn’t just about the warm and fuzzies. We found job placements increased by 30 percent once we started using the test. It’s also prescriptive. Through it you can learn how to better manage relationships — a key skill in the business world that can be the difference between receiving a promotion and a pink slip.

We believe the global managers we educate are really global relationship-builders. That’s why we help our students build individualized business awareness, skills and knowledge that will help them thrive — in every situation.

Jennifer Ninh
Managing Director, Full-time MBA Programs

I’ve been an admissions professional for more than nine years so I know you could earn your MBA anywhere. Why should you even consider the University of South Carolina?

I can tell you that as assistant director of admissions I see students benefit from being part of one of the nation’s most experiential MBA programs every day. I see them leave our doors, headed for careers at leading companies and global enterprises at levels you can’t reach with an undergraduate education. It’s an opportunity that impressed me so much, I pursued my own University of South Carolina master’s degree.

I know the MBA experience we’ve created at the Darla Moore School of Business amplifies your one or two years of intensive study like no other program. And because an MBA is a significant investment, we work hard to make your experience more fruitful, meaningful and even enjoyable at the University of South Carolina. Here’s how:

You’ll go global.
Our International MBA offers the first-person perspective and language fluency no classroom can provide. You live and work in a foreign market during the longest immersion of any international MBA program in the U.S. I know of no greater opportunity for an international-minded candidate than the nation’s #1 international program.

Interested in a one-year MBA but crave that global worldview? At USC you can spend your spring break on an international trip that exposes you to the culture, practices and environment of a foreign market.

You can enhance your degree.
During the program, you can ratchet up your own market value by earning top industry certifications — even in the one-year MBA structure. You can earn SAP and Six Sigma certifications that enhance your marketability and save the thousands it would cost you to pursue them independently.

Our students enjoy a level of experiential learning that’s unique in the southeast and in the nation. We take learning out of the classroom and into thriving Research and Partnership Centers with executives at leading companies. I see students create connections and opportunities that change their trajectory overnight.

We support you.
Here, support takes a number of forms. In each class, 100% of candidates receive financial support through scholarships and special tuition awards. We also match admitted students with current student mentors, whose experienced insight can help you as you work through key decisions.

At the University of South Carolina, you’ll find the international business coursework you expect. The big differentiator, according to many of our graduates, is the extras — like our international immersion, degree enhancements and career support.

From my perspective, considering the University of South Carolina isn’t just smart. It’s a step in the right direction.

If you’d like to talk more about our one-year MBA or International MBA, I’m happy to help. Just email me or call me at 803-777-0262 today.

Jennifer Ninh
Managing Director, Full-time MBA Programs 

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.