M.S.M. Program Catching on at Lander
Thursday, Sep 24, 2020
Juan Hernandez
Juan Hernandez

A year after the establishment of its new Master of Science in Management degree, Lander University’s College of Business has its first four graduates of the program.

The M.S.M is a specialized program offering in-depth managerial skills, unlike broader, more general master’s in business administration programs. It’s proving to be a popular degree at Lander.

Dr. Michael Brizek, interim dean of the College of Business, singled out several reasons for the popularity of the program. Students like the idea of being able to earn a quality master’s degree in management in a year, he said. He added, however, that students can also take up to six years to complete the program, if they wish.

The ability to enter the program despite having an undergraduate degree in a field other than business is also attractive to students. Only one prerequisite is required of such students, B.A. 600, which provides what Brizek calls an “advanced overview of business fundamentals.”

It’s also possible for students to gain admittance to the program despite not having taken the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT). In such instances, as long as students earn at least a 3.2 grade point average on the first nine credit hours of required coursework, and complete those courses within their first two semesters in the program, the GMAT requirement is waived.

Meg LaCombe
Meg LaCombe

The fact that the program is fully online makes it an option for students who have already entered the work force, or who have other responsibilities and commitments, and students pay no more than they would to attend undergraduate classes at Lander.

“It’s quite affordable,” Brizek said, adding that Lander’s accreditation by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) confers additional value upon a business degree from Lander.

The first recipients of the M.S.M. degree were united in their praise of the program. Juan Hernandez, of Saluda, called his experience “amazing. I learned so much in the space of a year, from the R & R Commander program to strategy formulation and implementation. The M.S.M degree also helped me expand my knowledge in quality and supply chain management.”

Meg LaCombe, of Beaufort, graduated from Lander in 2018 with a B.S. in chemistry and a minor in business administration. “I loved Lander so much I decided to go back for my master’s degree in management,” she said.

Sarah Prince
Sarah Prince

LaCombe, a laboratory technician for the Greenwood Genetic Center, described her experience in the program as “excellent. Every course I took has been useful in my current position, and I know will benefit me later in my career. I had exceptional experiences with knowledgeable and passionate professors, and I’m excited to apply what I learned in this program to my career.”

Sarah Prince, of Forsyth County, Ga., appreciated that she was able to juggle her work at Lander with a full-time job, and still have time for her children.

One thing that stands out about the M.S.M. program, she said, is “the diversity of the students. My classmates were not only different ages and at various stages of their careers, but also had different undergraduate degrees.”

She said her degree “has given me great confidence in my abilities, and I look forward to transferring my skillset to a long-term career!”

Amanda Fallaw
Amanda Fallaw

Amanda Fallaw, a human resources specialist with 25 years of experience, wanted to continue her education after earning a bachelor of science degree in organizational management at Charleston Southern University, but “with a demanding schedule and active family life, the time did not seem right to advance.”

Then Fallaw, a resident of Ninety Six, heard about Lander’s M.S.M. program. “I recognized this specific degree would allow me opportunities to cultivate additional tools of management and leadership benefitting my career,” she said.

Fallaw said she is proud to be the mother of a sophomore at Lander, and “honored to be a Bearcat alumna.”

Brizek said that “these first four graduates of the M.S.M. are pioneers of the program and a testament that you can achieve a quality graduate degree in business in under one year. These impressive graduates will undoubtedly be successful in their future endeavors, and will make the college proud of their achievements.”

Applications are still being accepted for Lander’s M.S.M. program. Applicants are encouraged to apply online. Application forms may be requested by writing the Office of Admissions, Lander University, Greenwood, SC 29649; by phoning 1-888-452-6337; or by emailing admissions@lander.edu.