We recently had the pleasure of speaking with Toby McChesney, Santa Clara University Vice Provost for Graduate Programs, about Santa Clara's well regarded online MBA program.
What is the latest news with Santa Clara’s online MBA: any upcoming enhancements or changes?
Students can now take up to 12 units of classes in our top ranked Evening MBA program if they want any face to face classes. We have a new concentration- Data Science & Business Analytics. With the launch of our new Online MS Programs (OMSFA and OMSBA) students have even more elective options and networking opportunities with our MS students.
What are the differentiating factors that make Santa Clara’s online MBA program unique?
Silicon Valley touch points and a focus on innovation. Students have a high touch experience with our career team with 1:1 mentoring, workshops embedded in the residencies, resume reviews, company info sessions, professional development workshops, career fairs and more. A robust number of electives to customize the MBA for their career. Community-focused: cohort based & smaller class size where students build relationships with their classmates and faculty member.
Approximately how many students enroll each year?
100-150 in a year with 4 intakes a year.
What is the ratio of students to faculty?
Describe the type of student that typically enrolls in Santa Clara's online MBA program:
Our students are required to have at least 3 years of professional work experience. The average age is 31 years old with 10 years of work experience. We are proud of our diversity: female (47%), out of state (5%), minority (66%)
Describe how students in the online MBA program interact with faculty:
Face-to-face at residencies, networking events or office hours. Zoom through live Q&A weekly sessions, networking events or office hours.
Do students work in a cohort or other structure? Can you share examples of teamwork and collaboration within the program?
The program is designed with a cohort structure where students are enrolled with the same group of students throughout their core courses. More importantly, most of our courses (upwards to 90%) have group assignments. These can be group discussion boards, case studies, or projects that span the term. This means they are working closely with one another throughout the program regardless of being asynchronous. Students debate, share their experiences in their industry, work on homework problems, explain their analyses, and present their group findings. By working so closely together students learn better, have greater satisfaction with their experience and build ties that last a lifetime.
Describe any residency or on-campus requirements for students in the online MBA program:
We have an on-campus 3-day residency experience at the beginning and at the end of the program. This way, the cohort begins together and ends together. Residencies are attached to a course and they will get unit credit for the weekend. Other activities include a career workshop, Executive speaker panel, Silicon Valley company tour, networking with faculty and an orientation seminar.
What companies typically recruit MBAs from your program?
Companies from across various industries and sizes recruit online MBA students from Santa Clara University. From large technology, biotech and consulting companies, to early stage start-ups, students can find connections with SCU Alumni across the globe.
What advice would you give a prospective candidate for your online MBA program?
Join us for networking events. Apply early for early access to our pre-coursework for the residency. Reach out to us if you would like to speak with a current student to hear about their experience.
Tell us about the career services and professional resources that are offered to online MBA degree candidates?
Santa Clara University Graduate Business Career Management Team offers Online MBA students a variety of professional resources. We partner with you to provide coaching and resources to support your career by:
- Fostering career self-reliance
- Offering tools to maintain job search readiness
- Knowledge and skills for life-long career planning
- Individualized career consulting and coaching
- Networking and corporate connection opportunities and events
Do most students live in the San Francisco bay area or are they more remote?
70% live in the Bay area. 30% live in the Sacramento, LA, San Diego, Portland, Seattle, New York, Austin, Houston areas.
Lastly, why should a prospective MBA candidate choose Santa Clara?
Top rankings not only by Online MBA Report at #31 overall, but with the following:
10th OMBA Program by Poets& Quants
14th OMBA Program by Princeton Review
15th OMBA Program by Fortune Education
40th OMBA Program by US News & World Report
Silicon Valley touch points in the curriculum, emphasizing the skills and values needed to success in the world’s most innovative industries
Structure, Electives and Concentrations to customize MBA
Dedicated Career support (top feedback from our students about our career team)
Thank you to Toby for participating in our Online MBA Report Interview Series!