Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The Past and Present Forms of the Executive MBA Program

Most of the persons in EMBAs some years back were sponsored by their companies, and were thus studying in order to contribute positively to their companies' personnel. However, majority of the participants in executive MBA program courses these days are paying for their fees themselves. Because of this, according to a top B-school, more are seeking to make a career change, whether during their program study or after graduation.

The executive MBA was not as much of a household name until fairly recently. After the financial crisis in 2008, the need for executive MBA career programs accelerated further. According to a survey on students regarding their needs, about 30 to 40% of them are seeking to make a career shift.

It seems that many colleges are currently being regarded by students as a place to pause while they consider shifting careers. There is a trend of EMBA students planning to make some sort of transition, whether in their present company or an overall change elsewhere. The universities responded by offering advisers for the students thinking about taking their careers in another direction.

Most of the persons in the Executive version of the MBA simply trump their non-executive counterparts when it comes to the years they have spent in the actual business arena. However, most of these are still being helped along their professional routes by the universities they attend. Still, majority of the students are complaining that their universities do not provide the help they need.

Now, most business schools provide EMBA students with career counseling services and resume review, which often replaces actual recruiting, and many graduate students are satisfied. There are even those who give specialized individual counseling sessions. The main goal is to teach graduates the skills important to develop their careers now and in the future.

There is no abatement in the increase in number of those requesting that their schools assist them. There are a lot of courses at the moment, but relatively few job openings. This is in fact partly why so many are in the course: they are hoping to network in order to make a career shift easier.

Most EMBA programs are hesitant to restructure and formalize career programs, thinking many companies are still willing to sponsor majority of students. However, that is now a thing of the past. This is now becoming a course where students decide to take themselves from their companies and to other ones.

Indeed, times have changed. Changing careers is widely accepted as a possibility for EMBA students, so much so that universities are beginning to institutionalize career services. Most EMBA universtities still do not provide true career programs, even so.

Many people say the ideal would be to have placement and job fairs regularly at EMBA colleges. However, a number of colleges are not entirely keen on the idea. It is said that because the EMBA degree-takers go into the course with an occupation, they do not require career placement.

The many types of Executive MBA program, schools say, are intended to train students, not to lead them to other jobs directly. While some say firms will soon resume sponsorships for their employees, most see the EMBA becoming a place for professional change. Universities shall simply have to keep up with the times.

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