Flexible business curricula have become all the rage. Most enable aspiring MBA candidates to take on a significantly decreased course load staggered across more semesters. Others are swift, precise, undemanding, and yet still packed with opportunities. With today’s MBA candidates more diverse than ever — some of which are older, high-achieving individuals who are already playing pivotal roles in organisations — the need for the latter has never been greater.
Kansas State University (K-State) has just the solution. Located in Manhattan, Kansas — also known as “The Little Apple” — its College of Business Administration offers a Professional MBA (PMBA) that broadens horizons, advances careers, and fills toolkits, with no need to sacrifice professional and personal duties.
If anything, this is a programme that encourages the immediate application of newfound knowledge in the workplace. Virtual delivery makes it possible. Once students complete their sessions for the day, they test out the tips, tricks, and best practices taught to them by the same qualified professors that teach graduate courses on site.
Thanks to these experts, PMBA students enjoy a learning experience that strongly resembles traditional, in-person classes — but better. Think rolling admissions, programme pauses, pre-recorded lectures with on-demand playback, and a suite of elective and concentration options to choose from.
Candidates only need to be physically present twice during a PMBA. First, it all kicks off with a two-day regional student orientation, which includes team building, networking, and professional development components. While this time is used to help new students find their bearings, returning students are frequently found using it as an opportunity to mix, mingle, and form strategic connections.
“It was a great fit for me 10 years ago, and it still is for me now,” Alycia Nelson explains. “The best experience so far has been orientation, when Suzy Auten brought all of us together. Even after many years, there was still that K-State feeling I felt in my freshman year as an undergraduate.”
Enduring relationships are built abroad as well. The programme guarantees a faculty-led, 10 day to two-week international trip to every student before they graduate. In fact, Suzy Auten, director of the PMBA, got her first passport as an adult to travel alongside the class. Her first international excursion was spent witnessing students gain and appreciate cultural perspectives.
Throughout the entire PMBA experience, support services abound. Many candidates are working professionals’ however, many begin the course to achieve career advancement or explore their options. The right guidance is needed for both. Students are encouraged to take full advantage of executive mentorship programmes and are assigned dedicated advisors that are ever-willing to provide personalised attention and expert counsel.
“If you join this programme, you will have me as your advisor the entire time,” says Auten. “I’m often logged on and answering emails throughout the day and into the night. Our entire faculty, as a matter of fact, spends their mornings checking their email since our distance students are in many different time zones. Our rule is that faculty members have to respond within 24 hours.”
They’re happy to do it. This enthusiasm made it easier for Nelson to advance her finance skills while caring for her family and fulfilling her professional duties. At night, she would burn the midnight oil and send in her queries. By morning, answers were ready.
“Any type of feedback that I got from my professors was almost instantaneous,” she explains. “Even if I send something at midnight, I’ll still have an answer when I wake up at 6 a.m. It’s been an awesome learning experience.”
Such experience reflects the college’s accreditation status by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) — the highest quality, most widely recognised validation possible.
The best part? Aspiring upskillers never have to reach too deep into their pockets for a business education of a lifetime. The PMBA’s affordability is what truly sets it apart, costing just a fraction of what is considered “typical” for a business school experience. Textbooks and other study materials are provided for free. GMAT and application fee waivers are available, as are various scholarships.
Choose K-State and your journey to business excellence could begin very soon thanks to five start dates annually: January, March, June, August, and October. To secure your place, click here.