What Makes the Blended MBA Different?

Dr. Norrie: Welcome back to yet another episode of UCTV and hopefully this is not the first time you’ve seen one of our episodes. But if it is, you’ll know this is a repeat guest. This is Professor Rick Fenner. Rick is the Chair of Business and Economics (department) here at Utica College and was instrumental in the development of our new Blended MBA. And that’s what we want to talk about today. So, Rick, let’s start there. What makes Blended different?

Dr. Fenner: Well, as an instructor, I’ve taught courses that are online and I’ve taught courses that are on ground. This incorporates both of these modalities. So in a typical class that I teach, I will have some students who are present in the physical classroom and I will have others that will be taking part online. And we will also have the option of archiving all this so students that can’t either be there physically or at the moment online (while the class is in session) can still take part in the class.

Dr. Norrie: So this really does sound like the best of both worlds to me. A student could be on ground, a student could be online, and if they can’t do either of those for whatever reason, they can pick up the content archived.

Dr. Fenner: Definitely. Our goal is to take two modalities and have one experience. I think what’s happened in the past is that online students have been cheated somewhat of being able to share in the same kind of experience that on ground students have. And our goal here is to ensure that both sets of students benefit fully.

Dr. Norrie: So if our viewers were thinking, perhaps, that this was more of an online program, they really need to find out more about this because it sounds like Blended really isn’t just online.

Dr. Fenner: It isn’t. I think it’s a very exciting way of developing curricular materials and I’m very excited to start teaching in this.

Dr. Norrie: Great. Well, speaking of the curriculum, we know that this MBA is really quite different. It blends this general management contemporary core ...

Dr. Fenner: Right.

Dr. Norrie: ... with these really market-driven specializations. Tell me a little bit about each of those.

Dr. Fenner: Again, our idea here was to develop an MBA that was very heavy on experience, was very heavy on application and used theory where it could benefit students in these areas. And so, by taking a solid business core and adding on industry specific specializations, we’re going to be providing students with career opportunities and the ability to improve their futures, by linking the business core with their specific areas of interest.

Dr. Norrie: Hence the logo that we use for the school, "UC Means Business ..."

Dr. Fenner: Business, that’s correct.

Dr. Norrie: Right? Get your UC degree to get you the job. Okay well, one last question. I think all graduate students are concerned about the return on investment for their studies and the cost of their studies. What can you tell us about that around this MBA program?

Dr. Fenner: Well, I think we set out to design an MBA that would be affordable. And I think if you take a look at the total cost of our MBA and you add in that the fact that we are providing a curriculum that helps students immediately in their areas of interest, you’ll see that the return of investment from a Utica College MBA is going to be very high.

Dr. Norrie: So, as an economist, you would say, "Take our program."

Dr. Fenner: Take our program, definitely. I thought you were looking for supply and demand.

Dr. Norrie: hanks, Rick. Thanks for joining us today.

Dr. Fenner: Sure.

Dr. Norrie: Really great, another great episode. If you want more information about our market-leading contemporary MBA and its core and all of its various specializations, you can get that information here. Have a great day.

The Utica College blended MBA program offers a new take on the flex MBA concept, providing students with the opportunity to learn the core material in the way that suits them best . Master of Business Administration students can choose to physically or virtually attend class sessions, or they can watch a recording of the classroom session at a later time. This is especially helpful for students:

  • With a schedule conflict during class time

  • Who prefer to learn the course material in a specific format

  • Who want to use the recording to review and strengthen learning of the material

Watch this video of UCTV host, Dr. James Norrie, Dean of Business and Justice Studies interviewing Dr. Rick Fenner, Chair of Business and Economics, as he discusses how this blended MBA structure was accomplished and why this was a main focus of the program.