MINNEAPOLIS — The University of Minnesota is trying to keep its master of business administration programs as schools across the country are closing their programs because of declining enrollment.
Full-time MBA enrollment across the U.S. has dropped 20 percent from 2006 to 2016, according to a report from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. Enrollment in specialized master’s degree programs has almost doubled in that same time period, the report said.
While enrollment in the university’s full-time MBA program has remained steady, with 565 applicants in 2017 compared with 548 applicants in 2010, the university’s Carlson School of Management is trying to offer more course options that align with the changing MBA market to attract students, the Minnesota Daily report ed.
The school offers six specialized masters programs in addition to full-time, part-time and executive MBA programs. The school is offering more interactive class time, face time with instructors, classroom assistance and online components as it attempts to sustain admissions.
“It’s a changing market and a changing environment,” said Phil Miller, the assistant dean of MBA programs at the university. “We’re evolving and we’re adapting.”
A rise in student debt could be partly to blame for the decrease in enrollment in full-time MBA programs, Miller said. Such programs typically cost about $60,000 a year, he said.
A strong economy also means students are less likely to leave the workforce to pursue more education.
“In a poor economy, students are more likely to leave stable jobs and go back to school to get higher levels of education, rather than wait on a promotion or a better job,” Miller said.