Are you a liberal arts or engineering major who is interested in accelerating your career in business? Did you miss out on taking introductory courses that would prepare you for roles in consulting, banking, or general management? You might consider a Master in Management (MiM) or Master in Management Studies (MMS) degree. These early-career, pre-experience master’s degrees prepare you to pursue entry-level roles in business. With a greater understanding of the fundamentals of business and enhanced soft skills, you will be well qualified for positions that your peers who majored in business, finance, or economics secured directly out of college. Think of these degrees as a post-graduate year in business! If you have fewer than two years of post-undergraduate work experience, you may be eligible for some MiM or MMS programs.
An MiM or MMS will provide you with the intellectual and professional skills to accelerate your career in business. These programs have existed for years in Europe, where HEC Paris’s Master in Management is the standout. The program has recently gained traction in the United States. The newest addition to this field of programs is Chicago Booth’s Master in Management (MM), which will matriculate its first cohort in the fall of 2024.
As you decide whether a master’s degree in management is right for you, consider the following questions:
Who typically gets this degree?
A master’s degree in management prepares non-business undergrad degree holders to secure entry-level roles in business. Most MiM and MMS programs require applicants to have a four-year, non-business degree. MiM programs tend to be geared toward early-career or immediately post-undergrad candidates, and they often accept applicants with a maximum of two years of post-undergrad work experience. Some MiM and MMS programs are STEM designated, which can provide additional ability to work in the United States post-graduation through a STEM Optional Practical Training (OPT) Extension.
How are programs structured?
MiM programs are typically offered full time, are immersive, and take place on campus. Most programs at US business schools are held over ten to twelve months and begin in the summer, shortly after university graduation. The majority of MiM programs have a standard business curriculum covering accounting, finance, operations, marketing, strategy, and economics. Many offer robust courses in leadership development and career readiness along with real-world projects to test classroom learning. Some programs boast concentrations or tracks that focus on finance, analytics, or marketing to provide a more targeted experience.
Deadlines for full-time programs generally start in the fall (October/November) and extend through the spring (March/April), with multiple rounds. Most programs require essays, a standardized test score (GMAT or GRE), a resume, undergraduate transcripts, and one or two recommendations. International candidates may be required to submit a test of English proficiency such as the TOEFL or IELTS. Interviews are offered to select applicants and are often required for acceptance. Some programs waive standardized testing requirements for current undergraduate students at the program’s university or applicants whose undergraduate GPAs exceed a minimum threshold.
Here are details on the application deadlines, curricula, and class profiles for some master’s degree in management programs:
- Duke Fuqua’s Master of Management (MMS) offers two program options (Durham, NC, or both Durham and Kunshan, China) and four deadlines starting in October. All students take the same courses throughout the ten-month program. For the Class of 2024, the Durham cohort has roughly 250 students from two dozen countries, with just under half women. Meanwhile, the Kunshan cohort is much smaller at approximately 60, with more than 50% women and only five countries represented.
- Chicago Booth’s Master in Management (MM) has four deadlines starting in November. The program consists of five core courses, after which students can choose to specialize in Analytics, Entrepreneurship, Finance, Marketing, or Strategic Management. All students participate in Boothcamp at the beginning of the program and take “Succeeding in the Workplace” to prepare for job placement and success.
- University of Virginia McIntire’s Master of Science in Commerce has five deadlines starting in October. Students can select tracks in Biotechnology, Business Analytics, Finance, or Marketing & Management. All students complete a three-week global immersion experience. The Class of 2024 has roughly 125 students, with approximately 40% women and about 20% international students. More than half of the Class of 2024 attended UVA for undergrad.
- Northwestern Kellogg’s Master in Management (MiM) has three deadlines starting in October. Students take classes in downtown Chicago, not at Kellogg’s global hub in Evanston. The top 25% of Kellogg’s MiM graduates are offered deferred enrollment for the school’s one-year MBA program.
- Michigan Ross’s Master of Management (MM) has five deadlines starting in September. After taking core classes, students complete an action-learning project while taking electives. The Class of 2024 comprises roughly 150 students, the majority of whom are women, with just over 10% international students.
- Georgetown McDonough’s Master of Science in Management (MiM) has five application rounds. MiM students take all of their classes together to create a highly collaborative cohort. More than half of the Class of 2024 are international students, and roughly half are women. The MiM is a STEM-designated degree with a focus on tech and innovation, culminating in a hands-on global consulting project.
- Notre Dame Mendoza’s Master of Science in Management (MSM) has four application rounds ending in March. The 11-month program offers specializations in Finance and Marketing and culminates in an immersive learning experience through Grow Irish Week, when students work with businesses and organizations on real-world challenges. The Class of 2024 consists of approximately 75 students, of which just under half are women and 15% are international students.
The popularity of pre-experience business master’s programs continues to grow, with more opportunities available each year, including the following:
- Cornell Johnson’s Master of Professional Studies in Management
- Emory Goizueta’s Master in Management
- Fordham Gabelli’s Master’s in Management
- Wake Forest’s Master of Science in Management
- University of Florida Warrington’s Master of Science in Management
- Boston University Questrom’s Master of Science in Management Studies
- University of Maryland Smith’s Master of Science in Management Studies
Where will you work after graduation?
A significant component of MiM programs is career support. Most programs offer personalized guidance to supplement formal recruiting. MiM, MM, and MMS students start in a variety of entry-level business roles, across industries in consulting (Accenture, Deloitte, EY, PwC Strategy&), technology (Amazon, Google, Microsoft, Oracle, Samsung), consumer packaged goods (Clorox, Johnson & Johnson, PepsiCo, Unilever), manufacturing (Cummins, General Motors, Schneider Electric), investment banking (Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Morgan Stanley), and finance (American Express, Bank of America, Capital One, Wells Fargo). Since these programs are typically offered through the business schools, master’s degree in management candidates have access to similar career resources as MBA students such as recruiting workshops, career coaches, alumni databases, and targeted career treks.
Why would I pursue an MiM, MM, or MMS instead of an MBA?
An MBA and a Master in Management are not mutually exclusive. Many MiM, MM, and MMS graduates work for several years at an accelerated pace—thanks to their additional training—and then become successful applicants at top MBA programs. And some top MBA programs offer accelerated MBA programs such as Northwestern Kellogg’s One-Year MBA and Duke Fuqua’s Accelerated Daytime MBA for candidates who hold an MiM, MM, or MMS. If you are a current undergraduate, an MiM, MM, or MMS program would be a better option, as most MBA programs require a minimum of three years of work experience.
The Stratus team is knowledgeable about not only MBA degrees, but also other specialty business master’s programs such as MiM and MM. Sign up for a free one-on-one consultation with one of our experienced counselors today!