Sunday, October 26, 2014

Wake Forest drops full-time MBA program

Wake Forest announced Wednesday that it will no longer admit students to its full-time MBA program.  The class admitted this fall will finish in spring 2016.  Faculty will be redeployed to other programs -- undergraduate business, a one year MA in Management, and the Professional MBA.

Like many other smaller MBA programs, WF had seen a significant drop in enrollment, from 240 in the 1990s to 114 now.  With better growth opportunities in the evening and Saturday MBA, the school decided to focus its resources on programs with more upside potential.

Poets and Quants interviewed WF dean Charles Iacovou:

Asked why he believes there is declining interest in full-time MBA programs, Iacovou cited the proliferation of one-year specialized master’s degrees and the increasing demand for more flexible programs. “The change is coming from the students themselves. They are choosing to receive an MBA differently than they had. Many of them don’t want to walk away from income or they choose to get more specialized degrees." 
Two reactions:  
1) I am not surprised to see a well-regarded school drop its full-time MBA program.  The market remains strong for the 15-20 largest schools but the remainder are fighting over a shrinking pool of applicants.  I am surprised that WF made this decision when it did, just after moving into a new facility.  But they will have company.  Soon.
2) NC State has long relied on Working Professionals who want classes in the evening and online.  We are looking to create a more flexible program where students can take both face-to-face and online classes as needed.  

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