North Dakota State Announces Online MBA Program

North Dakota State University's new online master of business administration program is aimed toward professionals with five years of work experience.
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Published on March 13, 2024
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  • North Dakota State University will launch an online master of business administration program in fall 2024.
  • The program is geared toward working professionals with at least five years of experience.
  • The program will include built-in networking opportunities and collaboration for students.
  • The MBA will also include instruction in the high-demand field of business analytics and organizational change management.

An online master of business administration (MBA) program can help students level up their careers without leaving their job — and another regional institution is adding an online MBA option geared toward working professionals.

North Dakota State University (NDSU) will launch an online MBA program starting in fall 2024, school officials announced, joining a number of other regional public and private institutions in offering the popular graduate business degree.

An MBA's broad instruction on leadership, management, and even more focused areas within the business world can help students advance their careers and get a return on their investment.

NDSU College of Business Dean Kathryn Birkeland said in a press release that the online format "will empower professionals to elevate their careers while accommodating their busy schedules."

NDSU's MBA program is aimed at working professionals with at least five years of experience and will feature synchronous evening classes. The program will bring a heavy focus on collaboration, featuring built-in networking opportunities for students.

"In our online MBA program, we don't just teach business, we immerse students in it," NDSU interim MBA Director Linlin Chai, who is also an associate professor of marketing, said in the release.

"Through simulations, case studies, and cutting-edge technologies, we offer an experiential learning journey that equips our students to tackle real-world challenges head-on. It's about transforming theoretical knowledge into actionable insights for tangible success."

The online MBA program at NDSU will feature instruction in high-demand fields like business analytics and in managerial skills. Those areas can set students up for rapidly growing careers, with the Bureau of Labor Statistics projecting growth in the employment of management analysts and in management occupations as a whole.

"The online MBA degree path is the latest example of how NDSU is transforming to reach students and meet workforce demands," NDSU President David Cook said in the release. "The program is built for working adults, bringing the virtual classroom, expert faculty, and industry connections to learners who need flexibility but want a degree that will advance their careers."

Growth of Online MBA Programs for Working Professionals

A growing number of colleges are offering online MBA options geared toward working professionals.

Washington University in St. Louis (WashU) plans to launch a flex MBA program starting in fall 2024. That program, which aims to let students work toward their degree while remaining at their jobs, will feature both online and in-person options for students.

WashU Olin Business School Dean Mike Mazzeo said in a January press release that part-time students "value choice and flexibility in an MBA program."

"WashU Olin's Flex MBA program will meet the needs of these students, enabling them to grow and learn within a program that fits their needs and lifestyles," Mazzeo said.

Schools at all levels, from selective private institutions like WashU to major flagship universities and regional public and private schools, are increasingly looking to make their MBA programs flexible for working students. Texas A&M University's Mays Business School will also debut a flex MBA program later this year, featuring asynchronous instruction.

NDSU isn't the only North Dakota school to recently announce an online MBA: The University of Jamestown, a private university, will launch an MBA program through its online division starting in fall 2024. That program will feature "specialized microcredentials," allowing students to customize their education and apply it to their job in real time.

Credentials include high-demand areas like business analytics, supply chain and operations management, healthcare management, and more.