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Ohio University MBA Program Overview

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Brittany: Hello, everyone, and welcome to Ohio University’s Online Webinar presentation today: The Online Learning Experience. For today’s presentation you are in for a treat as you have the opportunity to hear from special guests who are directors of the online MBA program so sit tight. I hope the information shared is valuable for you in learning more about how you can become a future Bobcat in the online MBA program. So, just a few housekeeping tools for today’s presentation that will be useful. In the top left corner you’ll see Quick Links. Here is where you can utilize the links to schedule an appointment with your enrollment advisors to discuss your interest in the program and answer any questions that you may have. Also on the lower left corner you’ll see the Q&A box. Please utilize this box throughout the presentation to type in any questions that you have pertaining to the online MBA and we will address as many as we can toward the end of the presentation. You’ll look in the top right corner, you’ll see “e-mail a friend” and filling out that information to e-mail a friend a copy of this webinar recording. Also in the lower right corner, uh, you’ll see a bar with technical help, uh, the share button and a shortcut to our Facebook page along with other helpful links throughout the presentation.

For today’s webinar we’re gonna start with introductions of our webinar presenters and enrollment advisors. Then we’ll talk a little bit about Ohio University, specifically the College of Business. We’ll cover the program overview and curriculum as well as our Leadership Development Program and International Study Program. We’ll also cover the learning experience in our online program as it pertains to the Online Learning Platform and also cover what’s required to gain admission in the process and program. After that we’ll talk about our international student options and then, at the end of the presentation, we’ll have a Q&A session and answer as many questions as time permits. However, please remember to reach out to your enrollment advisors after the presentation for questions about the program.

Alright. So, uh, I’ll start off with a few brief introductions of our enrollment advisors. You have myself, Brittany Smith, I’m an enrollment advisor for the online MBA program. I’m happy that you all could join us today and I hope that the information shared is valuable for you to become a future Bobcat. Also we have Brittany Kraft, Sharon Diaz and Michael Johnson as enrollment advisors as well.

Alright. So we have a very special guest today for you all in today’s presentation, our Program Director and Assistant Professor of Business Analytics, Dr. Young. Hello, Dr. Young.

Dr. Young: Hello. Good afternoon, everybody. I just wanted to say I appreciate you spending the time with us today and/or watching the recording later. Uh, just a little bit about myself. I actually am a three-time Bobcat and I think that’s pretty typical of what you see around Ohio University because there’s a lot of pride that goes into going to Ohio University and people that tend to, uh, either grow up here or come to school here, uh, tend to find a way back here. As far as what I do in the college, uh, I am a Professor of Business Analytics so I teach a lot of the analytics courses that you all will take if you would sign up for one of our concentrations that we will talk about later. Uh, I’m actually pretty active around the college in doing different professional development programs. One program in particular, uh, I work with young adults and we go through a three week business boot camp, for lack of better words, and, uh, things like that, so, uh, definitely research and teach in the areas of analytics and, uh – yeah, just looking forward to answering your questions and seeing you in class and again, thank you for your time.

Brittany: Awesome, thanks, Dr. Young. We look forward to hearing from you soon. Uh, so also we have with us today Jill Nice. She’s the Associate Director of Graduate Student Services and Operations. Hello, Jill.

Jill: Hello, Brittany, and hello everyone who has joined us. I will echo what Bill said and just thank you for, uh, spending your lunch hour with us; for those of you who are watching the recording later, we really appreciate you taking the time to hear what we have to say and we hope you’ll find it valuable. Just a little bit about me. I’ve been with Ohio University for actually about 18 year – about 18 years now and I’m also a Bobcat, like Bill said, you’ll find a lot of us around here who are Bobcats. My primary role is, uh, working with Student Services and I’ve worked with adult students who are going to school part-time for my entire career here at Ohio University so I definitely understand the needs of those types of students and the focus of our team here is to make sure that when students, like yourself, would have questions, that we get answers to your questions as quickly as possible because we don’t want you out there, you know, wherever you live struggling and wondering and having questions and needing answers and you need those as soon as possible. And also we always just try to make sure that we keep the – sort the office the administrative side of the program as seamless as possible for the students so that you can focus more on the academics and not have to think about registration and billing and financial aid and all that stuff. So we just try to help out as much as possible. So, again, thanks for joining us.

Brittany: Awesome, great, thank you, Jill. So now we’d like to talk about the university itself, specifically the College of Business. Dr. Young is going to tell us a little bit about the history of Ohio University and the College of Business. Dr. Young.

Dr. Young: Yeah, sure thing. So the main cam – campus of Ohio University is located in southeast Ohio about 100 miles away from Columbus. It’s a pretty, hilly, beautiful area down here in Athens, Ohio. We’re actually the ninth oldest university that was established in 1804 so we have quite a deep history around Ohio University. Probably one of the selling points – probably one of the biggest selling points as you shop around for different MBA programs is our accreditation and so we are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools but predominantly we are accredited by AACSB which is the highest ranking accreditation body that there is for any school of business. And, as you see here on the slide only about 5 percent of the schools worldwide have this accreditation so that is definitely something we, you know, covet and treasure, I guess, uh, with our, you know, our programs that we offer here. Uh, more specifically about Ohio University, we have about 25 thousand students on campus here in Athens, Ohio. We have another 10 thousand students roughly from our, uh, satellite campuses, if you will, around Ohio, and then we have about another 10 thousand students online so that number is definitely growing. And, like I said earlier with being established so early, we do have an extensive alumni network of students that have graduated from our college.

In terms of our faculty, in terms of the College of Business itself, uh, this is also something I would look at in addition to the AACSB accreditation, when you’re looking for, uh, MBA program. This is something special. We staff our classes with roughly about 80% of our faculty holding terminal degrees, so the Ph.D. or the DBA Doctor of Business Administration or JD types. So unlike some schools that you might be taking a course from another graduate student and maybe this terminal degree holder faculty member is overseeing this course, you’re being instructed directly by our terminal degree holders so that’s actually something, uh, that’s a little different and differentiates ourselves certainly from other programs out there. The 20 percent that don’t hold these terminal degrees are definitely people that have been deemed professionally qualified by AACSB so they’re the practitioners, the whole different position. For example, CPA’s in Accounting or other distinct – distinguishing facts, uh, you know, and certificates and other accolades, uh, that they might have. Uh, you know, this is an exciting time for the college because we’re actually submitting all of our statistics for the new rankings so you can see on the side we have been ranked in 2017 for a couple of different things that we’re certainly excited about. One of the things that we’re consistently rated for is our best value for an MBA so again, going back to that AACSB accreditation and our price point we find we feel our program is very attractive and that’s something I would encourage you, uh, to compare against other schools if you’re looking.

The other thing we consistently get rated highly from US News and World Report is just the quality of our program. And, uh, of course, one of the biggest news of late, we actually were ranked 15th Best Public Business University, uh, by Business Week, Bloomberg Business Week about a year ago and if you look at both public and private institutions for business schools, we’re ranked 38th so we were very, uh, pleased with that ranking, certainly being the best – top of the, uh, 15 best programs in the nation is certainly something that we have a lot of pride with.

Okay, so if I was to give you an overview about our program, uh, we definitely have a rigular – a rigorous curriculum but, you know, with I don’t want to scare you by saying that – it’s just that this is a real degree program. So, you know, I think a lot of students at times think there’s a big difference between face-to-face and online education and I think that might have been true very early on but that has certainly changed in recent years. So, uh, the degree that you would earn, uh, your diploma, is not going to say online MBA; it’s gonna say MBA only and that’s because we feel strongly that the curriculum matches what you – your experience would be like if you were on campus face-to-face with an instructor so its definitely comprehensive in the terms that you’ll be taking – if you would enroll into our programs, you’ll be taking one course at a time and that course will be offered in a seven week format and, uh, for example, you’ll take two courses every semester so the first seven weeks and the last seven weeks of a semester.
Something that differentiates ourself from other schools: We definitely take a practical side to our curriculum development so the real world approach is definitely something in every course that you should find, something that you can immediately apply to your, uh, current career. I know I teach a course called Data Analysis for Decision-Making amongst other analytic classes and I continuously hear, uh, about how students are taking their skills directly back to work and getting value from their MBA and that certainly is true with other courses as well.

The platform that we use is a flexible one so we actually – uh, we’ll talk a little bit more about this later – but we have asynchronous and synchronous environments so asynchronously you might watch videos or participate in discussion boards on your own time – it could be 1 a.m., it could be 6 a.m., it could be 3 p.m., you know, it’s really at your time, and then there’s certain times where you’ll be able to connect with all – with your instructor, uh, live synchronously.

Uh, in terms of the support I think that’s another differentiating factor, uh, from our program. We have enrollment advisors, student advisors, faculty and, you know, other students as well that – that basically makes up our support team and like Jill said earlier, we make this as seamless as possible. You know, we have people, uh, gathering information and, uh, supporting you in a variety of ways down to giving you telephone calls, giving you course information about the books that you might need, uh, which courses you might have to register for, uh, if you need to step out of the program for a semester, uh, for a number of reasons, you got a promotion, have to move, you are pregnant, you get a promotion, you have to deal with something in your life, uh, you know, there’s people here at the college that are going to help you navigate, uh, your way through this two year program, so, uh, that’s something we definitely think is special as well.

And I just can’t – I can’t pass this opportunity up again to say we are very, uh, impressive in terms of our value, as far as the AACSB accreditation or top ranked school and you can complete the program in as little as two years and we provide the flexibility of concentration for that, uh, deeper dive in one subject matter. So with all that being said, uh, it is an impressive value and I encourage you to, uh, look at other schools to compare us and, uh, I think you’ll feel that we are impressive in terms of our value.

Uh, let’s talk a little bit about the core curriculum. What you’re seeing here on the table is a list of courses that everyone in the online MBA would take. It’s a very generalist MBA path, if you will, so you’ll definitely see the beginnings of analytics with the data analysis course, you’ll see OBHR in Human Resources, you’ll see your traditional accounting, finance, marketing, uh, operations, strategic leadership, uh, courses. And then to cap it off we have an applied business experience at the end of your program that you would take so it’s a very traditionalist program and, like I said earlier, we’ll talk about this later but we octually – actually do provide some concentrations if you want a deeper knowledge set in one of our four functional areas.

So, uh, let me talk a little bit about the entire curriculum itself. There are nine courses, there’s 26 core courses in the program, uh, each course is three hours. That last course, of course, is two hours, uh, to make our total program 35 credit hours. Like I said earlier, you’ll take two courses each semester and, uh, the first course will be the first seven weeks of a semester, the second course of that semester is the last seven weeks. Uh, sometimes you’ll have a break in between those, other times, depending on the year and our scheduling, maybe you won’t but we try definitely to, uh, give you a week in between if we can.

Uh, let’s see, what else? The program can be completed in two years or six semesters. There are options to step out even though it’s not always encouraged. We do realize that life events happen and we will accommodate requests of that nature. Uh, our four concentrations include Finance, Health Care, Executive Management and Analytics. And now that we have been around since 2012 in the online space we’re starting to get recognized. Uh, but before I talk about the recognition I definitely want to say we’ve been offering graduate programs for more than, uh, a number of years so 30 or so years from my recollection. So it’s not something that this is new to us, by the way, but from our online program that is relatively new. We started in 2012 and, like I said, we’re starting to get recognized by the concentrations that we offer. So MBA today ranks our Finance concentration Top 50 Program nationally; same with Health Care. Our Executive Management is our highest ranking concentration and a Top 15 and our most recent concentration that we have created in Business Analytics and within the first two years of that program being live, we got ranked in the Top 30 Programs nationally so that’s definitely something that we’re proud of and, uh, you can see the list of courses – each concentration has three courses so if you’re interested in our Executive Management, uh, you would take an analytics course, a Prescriptive Analytics course that deals with how to apply quantitative methods to make decisions and/or evaluate when you’re making a risky decision. We have other courses, such as Leadership and Change Management so how do you lead your organization through change which is not always easy, of course. And then we have an Ethics course that deals with compliancy and other related ethical issues within business. Um, analytics, you know, it’s hard for me to not talk about analytics and Jill is probably rolling her eyes here now but in terms of prescriptive it is the exact same course that you would take as the Executive Management track but then we do a deeper dive into Predictive Analytics which is all about looking at historic data and making forecasts for the future so you can, uh, lead your company through different planning initiatives, different changes that might occur based on some of the forecasts that your company might make. And then we get into Data Based Management which might sound intimidating but, uh, we are looking at different ways to simply manage data so we can do the analysis, so we can do the prescriptive and predictive type of analyses. So, uh, that in addition with our finance, you’ll get a breadth of finance courses in terms of financial markets, investments, and advanced corporate finance as well as our three course health care track with a breadth of an introduction to US health care system, financial law and financial health.

Brittany: Thank you again, Dr. Young, for sharing that insightful information about our curriculum and the MBA specifics on the program. Uh, everyone please remember as the presentation continues to type any questions you may have in the Q&A box to address at the end of the presentation. So now for one of our more unique pieces of our online MBA program, the Leadership Development Program. This is an opportunity for students to come to campus and participate in an interactive weekend-long experience so Jill, can you tell us about the Leadership Development Program?

Jill: Absolutely, I would be happy to. This particular program is something that all of us that work with the online MBA program are very proud of and we really feel like this adds a lot of value to our program for the students because it is unique to our program and it differentiates us from a lot of the other online MBA programs that are out there. We give you an opportunity to come to campus, see what a beautiful campus we have here in southeastern Ohio. You get to meet faculty and network with other classmates and it’s just really something that seems to be very valued by the students once they’re here once. So the workshops are offered twice a year, uh, in April and August, and they’re offered in between semesters so the April one is between the spring and the summer semester and August is between the summer and fall semester. So if you would – for instance, if you would start the program in the spring we would ask that you come to the LDP that takes place in August. If you start the program in the summer you would also be asked to come to that one that occurs in August. If you would start in the fall we would ask you to come the next April. So, as you can see here on the slide, your tuition covers you to come – covers your meals and your housing and pretty much everything that – while you’re here on campus but you would just have to be responsible to get yourself here to campus. Then once you’re here you’re pretty much covered.

So, uh, one thing that we’re really proud of about this program is the quality of the speakers that we get here and the content is always fresh. So you’ll see here on the slide some of the things that you’ll work on while you’re here. You’ll get, as I said, network with other students. You’ll get to meet the faculty that you’ve been working with, watch some keynote presentations and then we offer breakout sessions depending upon if you’re a first time attendee or we also have breakout sessions by your concentration. So we really dive into a lot of content while you’re here for that day and a half.

Here we have an example of some of the sessions that were held at the April LDP so you can see we had a couple of really, uh, high value keynote speakers who really gave a lot of great information to our students that were here, that we got some really great feedback from the students saying that this particular LDP was – they just find it better than any conference that they’ve ever attended and it really adds a lot of value to the program. And then we have an example here of some of the breakout sessions that we do for the concentrations so that you can see there an example of, depending upon what your concentration is, what you might be able to participate in while you’re here on campus.

Brittany: Awesome. Thank you, Jill, for that insightful information. If you are interested in learning about how business is conducted in other countries, our online MBA program does offer some of those opportunities for you. Dr. Young, can you tell us a little bit about the International Study opportunities available to students in the online MBA degree?

Dr. Young: Yeah, absolutely. (clears throat) Excuse me. So, uh, one totally optional opportunity that we offer is to go abroad and you can see the list of different places around the world, uh, that we have been to. I most recently went to Cuba last summer with a group of 20 students from our MBA program and it was just eye-opening to summarize it, at the very least. It was very interesting to understand the culture. It was very interesting to understand how business is conducted, uh, in a totally different environment than what we’re used to here in the United States. Uh, it was also very enjoyable as far as getting to know students. We had different social events planned around different cultural events and things like that so it was very nice. Much like the LDP, you know, you get a chance to meet your fellow students and your faculty members and probably more important than the faculty members is the students that you have e-mailed, you used the discussion board with and you’ve communicated with all along the way, it’s – it’s just a great environment and I’ll be frankly honest with you, when I came to the university in 2012 after my Ph.D. program I thought: “Really? We’re offering a residential program and experience for online students.” I thought they were taking the online program because they didn’t want to come to campus and I could have not been more wrong about that decision and about that program. I can tell you that students come back to multiple ones, even though you’re only required to come to one, uh, people come to multiple ones and, like Jill said, we get feedback all the time saying: “You know what? This isn’t a traditional conference where I’m sitting in a big room, bored to tears, waiting to get out of there to go to lunch or something.” You know, these are really engaging, uh, events, much like our international study program, that students really enjoy and, uh, like I said, have come back to many of them.

Brittany: Great. Thank you, Dr. Bill. Uh, so now we’re going to jump into the online learning experience, the platform of our courses and how the courses are run through our learning management system. So I’m going to turn the presentation over to my colleague, Michael Johnson, to cover that information with you.

Michael: Thank you, Brittany. Um, as you mentioned, I was looking to cover the online experience and provide a brief kind of overview of the online learning management system. Obviously, as Dr. Young mentioned before, it’s an asynchronous learning system. The online MBA program is designed for the working professional and the majority of the course work is being asynchronous. There’s no predetermined log in amount of time each week. You have the flexibility to log into your assignments when you have time, typically Monday to Sunday, and you have individuals due dates within that given week. Also it’s based on a module base format. So assignments are broken into sections by topics each week. These sections cover weekly overviews, objectives, reading and multimedia pieces such as recording and lectures, uh, and they also synchronize lectures, they segment those recordings by topics. So you can go to specific topic 30 minutes in, for example, of the recording. And they have the flexibility to complete the modules when you have time so you’re not being overwhelmed. So you can come in, do an hour here or there throughout the week to get your assignments done. Also the system is very interactive. It’s not just gonna be you and the textbook. There is – will be simulations of multimedia video assets in the experience, there’s a variety of ways to communicate with your classmates and teachers through e-mail or interactive discussion boar – uh, boards, professors can provide virtual office hours where you’ll get to meet with them face-to-face via webcam, and lastly there’s an online grade book that allows you to check your progress and recei – receive feedback on your assignments so there’s no guessing where you are and where your grade is at the time. That’s kind of – that concludes my kind of brief overview of the online learning experience. I’m going to pass it back over to Dr. Young who is going to go into more detail about – give you the kind of course demo at the Backboard. Dr. Young?

Dr. Young: Absolutely. So what I wanted to do is just walk you through the online experience and give you more of an example of what the first course would look like that you would enroll into if you selected Ohio University for your MBA program. So what we’re looking at now is a picture of Blackboard. Blackboard is our ler – learning management system. Uh, as you go through the program you’ll definitely see the courses on the right hand side of your screen that you’ve taken. In general you have at least a year’s worth of access to these courses so if you take, for example, Data Analysis for Decision-Making in the first semester your have and then maybe in semester five you take an Analytics course, uh, you can always reach back to that Data Analysis course to get some prerequisite material that you might have forgotten or need to refresh yourself with.

Uh, this is a typical calendar layout. You’re seeing a partial view of that calendar and essentially these green, light green cells in a spreadsheet are the virtual office hours. And I definitely wanted to clarify, uh, the virtual office hour environment. So, as we’ve noted, there are times where we have synchronous activities and sessions, uh, that’s what we’re calling the virtual office hour and we will be there, faculty are required to, uh, be there twice a week so the first week there’s an extra session to launch the course in all courses, uh, but then usually these sessions are one every Wednesday and one on the weekend, uh, so that’s what you’re seeing here. So, again, faculty are required to be there during that hour so if you want to reach out to them and talk either through the microphone or through the chat or whatever it is – everybody conducts their virtual office hour a little differently – and I’ll talk about what we do in Data Analysis but you’re more than welcome to go to them. And even if you can’t attend those these sessions are recorded and of course we have a lot of students from the West Coast or even in the East Coast that might be working all night or just have a conflict that you’re not able to attend – these sessions are recorded so you can simply watch those recordings later.

Most of our assignments are due on the weekend, by the way, by design. It’s actually in the program policy document that I wrote and gave to faculty so if you have an assignment, they are due on the weekend with the exception that we do some courses, not all courses but some courses have a minimal amount of group work – (clears throat) excuse me, but, uh, if there is group work it’s not like you have to get together necessarily. You might have to post on a discussion board, for example, mid-week and then you let your teammate or the person that you’re paired with respond to that discussion board post. So, again, teamwork is minimized in the learning or the online learning environment but it does exist and when it does exist we’ve really thought through, uh, what we’re asking the students to complete.
Uh, jumping back into Blackboard here, this is an activity that we’re looking at and in my particular course, uh, we assume that you have never opened a Excel workbook and so I’m giving you a tour of Excel in the first few videos of the course and you would simply watch these videos. This first one is a tour video. It’s maybe a little on the longer side of things, uh, but you would watch this video and we would give you a starting Excel file so you could mimic these steps and action taken on the video on your own worksheet so you’re learning by doing. Uh, so that is really the whole premise of our analytical courses for sure in the online MBA program. And I would just say if you have a two-screen monitor setup that is very beneficial.

But, anyway, we’re jumping into the homework. Like I said, homeworks are due on the weekend, usually Sunday night at midnight. Our modules run from – the first day of the new module is Monday, the last day of that module is Sunday night at midnight and then we start all over again on Monday. With this particular homework you’re seeing, its four problems that you would complete in an Excel environment and then you would submit those. Can you work ahead? Absolutely. I’ve had some students, not a lot but some students work through maybe five different modules in the first two weeks of the class and, you know, if that’s – if that’s something you can pull off, by all means do. We’re not going to hinder your ability to work ahead, we encourage it and that’s typical of the classes that we offer in the program. I would say it’s fairly rare though, you know, because we all have responsibilities with our work, with our spouses, uh, even if, you know, and other responsibilities that we have to consider. But its reasonably placed – uh, paced and the facts of the matter is you can focus on one thing at a particular time. So when you have a Data Analysis course, for example, you also don’t have to think about OBHR simultaneously and worry about competing due dates or how are you going to read these chapters of an OBHR case study and do some statistical analysis in Excel. You don’t have to worry about that because we’ve designed the curriculum so you can focus on one thing at a time which has been very successful.

Uh, the discussion boards are something we highly encourage to use and, again, everybody, uh, that has designed the course, all of our faculty members, use this a different way but in Data Analysis what we do is we really encourage open communication and, uh, we could have anywhere from 30 to 100 different posts in a given week in these environments and our instructors are trained and, uh, you know, they check on these things daily, you know, uh, I would hate for an online student to post on a discussion board and have a faculty member saying: “Oh, yeah, I’m teaching that one online course.” You know, which I’ve heard from other institutions and other programs that they do, they forget that they are engaged. That’s not going to happen at Ohio University. Our faculty are award-winning faculty members that care deeply about your education and, uh, they’re responding to these things daily – e-mails, discussion boards and any other form of communication and quite frankly we’ve had a lot of faculty and students later say that they really appreciated one-on-one telephone call at times, you know. And our faculty are willing to do that. One story, not to get sidetracked, but I deal with a lot of book representatives from companies and they say: “You know, the one thing about OU that’s different from everywhere I go is that there’s a line of students waiting outside of the faculty member’s office door.” And one, there’s actually a faculty in there – a faculty member in their office wanting to talk to their students and, uh, you know, it’s just a very, uh, active, sort of caring, learning environment and we’re lucky that we attract faculty members who care deeply about teaching more so than I would say research. Uh, and that’s okay.

But anyway, open form of discussion is something we encourage and you’ll have a chance to ask questions along the week in the asynchronous environment and, uh, you’d be surprised how quickly you post a question, how quickly it will actually get answered, either by another student of another faculty member.

Oh, this is a Dolby Connect (clears throat) excuse me once again. Uh, this is a Dolby Connect and this is the much like WebEx or something that you would use in a – in a web conferencing environment. A Dolby Connect is set up a little bit more to be engaging in an educationally centered tool and what you’re seeing here is a number of participants – myself and another faculty member in Analytics, Andy Goodnight, leading a section – a session, I should say, of virtual office hour and you can see the chat in the chat room and what you can’t see if that bottom left pod, if you will, filled with questions from our students that we addressed. So the way we conduct this session is that the leader – it looks like Andy Goodnight is actually leading, uh, with the microphone and the screen chair and what you’ll see actually from me is answering the chat questions all during the same session and Andy would be the one, uh, answering the Q&A, but we go back and forth about rotating who does what and things like that and, uh, its very engaging. We have you guys fill out these simple polls so we know what areas we need to focus on that night, if you have questions, so we’ll have materials prepared that if you have a certain question about some sort of learning outcome, you know, we’ll be able to go through an example, in addition to the videos that you, uh, have available to you to watch. And like I said, those sessions are usually at night, Wednesday or Thursdays, either 7 p.m. or 8 p.m., depending on the faculty member’s schedule and they’re all recorded and you can watch those recordings.

Uh, one example of how student-centered we actually are is we send out that recording which is the announcement you’re seeing right now. We actually provide you with a table of contents so if there’s one particular homework problem – for example, there’s a problem called Specialty Steal in our course. If you just needed help with that one particular problem, you don’t have to watch and hunt and peck for an hour, uh, through an hour-long video to try to find that one part about Specialty Steal. Uh, we want you guys to get the right information at the right time and, uh, that’s just one example of, uh, what we do to help you.

Brittany: Awesome. Thank you, Dr. Young. So now we’re going to talk about next step. How can you apply the information already covered in the presentation if you’re looking to apply to the degree program and become a future Bobcat. So first you need to have a regionally accredited Bachelors degree, also 2-5 years of professional full-time work experience, specifically with the work experience we’re looking for consistency and career progression. If you have management or supervising experience that’s also a plus. Also a 3.0 GPA. The GPA is preferred; however if you have less than the 3.0 or you’re fairly close, don’t be discouraged to not apply. The application process is holistic. Uh, now for the application process we do ask that you submit an up to date copy of your resume. We do need to see that career progression and consistency on your resume. Also you need to submit three letters of recommendation. With the letters of recommendation we require one from your current supervisor or manager and then the other two from individuals that are going to speak highly on your behalf in regards to your overall work ethics and your professionalism. We need a personal goal statement. With the goal statement we’re looking for you to elaborate on your strong sense of purpose, of why you’re interested in the online MBA program and how the program will help with your career goals; also pointing out anything in our curriculum that stands out to you as well as the concentration. We would need transcripts from all institutions. With this one it is very important if you’ve transferred any credits into your degree-seeking institution or you’ve attended any other institution outside of the Bachelors, we would also need copies of these transcripts as well. And then last would be the fifty dollar application fee which you would pay upon completion and submission of the application. Please note GMAT and/or GRE are not required for this online MBA and transfer credits are not accepted as well. If you look to the right hand side of the slide you’ll see our tuition costs for the program. For our instate Ohio residents you’re looking at a total cost of $35,140 and our non-state residents you’re looking at $35, 805 for the total cost. Um, that breaks down to a cost per semester credit hour of $1,004 credit hours for instate residents and $1,023 for non-Ohio residents. And if you do the math, that calculates out to be a total of 35 total semester credit hours in the total cost of the program. So now I’ll turn the presentation back over to Jill Nice. She is going to speak to some very exciting international student options that we have in our program that are available. Jill?

Jill: Yes, absolutely. Um, this is something relatively new that we’ve just been able to offer to people who are potentially interested in our program. Because the OMBA is an online part-time program we’re not able to issue regular student visas so we have never been able to admit students who are international students but recently we’ve been ab – given the go-ahead to go ahead and allow H1B visa holders who are actually already here in the country and you would be able to apply for our program just like any other student in the U.S. So the only caveat to that is that you would need to make sure that you would be available and here in the United States to attend one of the Leadership Development Program weekends. So we help – we hope that that helps some people who have been interested in the program in the past who were disappointed that they weren’t able to apply so we’re really excited that this is something new that we’re able to do.

Brittany: Awesome. Thank you, Jill, for that insightful information as well. Ladies and gentlemen, we’ve come to our Q&A section of the presentation. For those of you who have questions, please utilize the Q&A box, type your questions and we will answer as many questions as time permits. So I’m going to turn it over to my colleague, Michael Johnson, and he is going to cover the Q&A section of the presentation.

Michael: Thank you, Brittany. So first off a question that comes across is payment options, financial aid specifically. Is Financial Aid available for this program?
Brittany: The answer to that question will be yes. Um, we do accept financial aid if you qualify. You definitely want to go ahead and utilize the FAFSA.gov website to fill out that application. It doesn’t hurt to apply. Once you know if you’re approved we definitely can utilize that to fund your degree program. Also, just so you know, we also accept tuition assistance from your employer and then if you’re paying out of pocket we do have unique payment plans that will assist you in that process as well.

Michael: Wonderful. Thank you. Now another question that I have here: Is there ability to take multiple concentrations? Um, there is the ability to do that so you have, for example, the student and the question was asking is they wanted Health Care but also was interested in Business Analytics. So you would complete the program, do the 12 courses with the Health Care concentration and then you’d be able to come back and take the three concentration courses. Now obviously that’s not getting you a dual MBA, you’re just adding those additional concentration courses onto your course load for your transcripts to obviously add to your resume and things of that nature as well.

Now, I have another question here as well in regards to a student standard…

Dr. Young: Michael…

Michael: Go ahead.

Dr. Young: I just wanted to add one thing that’s something that we’re working at – (clears throat) Excuse me, I’m losing my voice. Uh, but there’s one thing that we’re working on at the college which would be, uh, the ability for students to take a certificate and the certificate would mirror the courses in our concentration and, uh, the students wouldn’t have to necessarily wait to delay their graduation to take a second concentration. What they could do is graduate the MBA and then later take a certificate program, uh, based on the concentrations that we offer.

Michael: Wonderful. I appreciate that, Dr. Young. I actually have another question here that I was going to address to you. It’s about the Business Analytics. Uh, the student was asking, regards they don’t have a math background so the – but they are interested in the Business Analytics. Would you be able to describe that it’s not necessarily someone coming into that pro – that particular concentration without a math background?

Dr. Young: Yes, absolutely. So I do understand that analytics and business intelligence can be very intimidating if, uh, if you don’t have a solid mathematical or maybe engineering background but I would not let that persuade you. Uh, in fact a lot of times students come into the program with that fear and then later change their concentration, uh, after maybe their first or second semester once they’ve had data analysis. I can tell you that we walk you through step by step what you need and we work closely together as faculty to develop the curriculum in a manner that you’re not taking these large jumps at a time. Uh, you know, I personally pride myself on being able to take something that’s difficult to break it down and to explain it clearly to anybody that wants to learn it, you know, so will it be easy? I mean nothing is easy. Nothing worth pursuing is ever easy, uh, but if you’re willing to focus on the topic you’ll be fine, regardless of your math background.

Michael: Thank you, Dr. Young, for providing that detail. Uh, another question that I have here is the course structure which we kind of mentioned through as to how flexible is it. Uh, to reiterate, it is on a part-time basis, it is designed for the working professional so you have two terms within a semester. You have a term A and a term B. Term A is seven weeks. You take one course and then you move onto term B for seven weeks. Um, and it is designed to be done within two years; however you have up to six years to complete the program. As Dr. Young mentioned earlier on saying that if something were to come up, you can take a step out of the program, you have the ability to do that. So it is very flexible in that regard.

And another question I have is in regards to the duration is two years and also: Does your diploma state online? Uh, actually your diploma is going to state, uh, Ohio University – Masters of Business Administration from Ohio University. It doesn’t list was it online, whether you did it on campus or you did it blended learning or you’re doing an online MBA. We just look at it as a delivery method. Your diploma does not state that delivery method. You get the same quality education regardless. Uh, I’m just checking here for another question. Now, time commitment to this kind of goes to my prior point for full time student; most students in the program are working professionals so kind of estimated time per week, and obviously this is going to vary depending on your, uh, strength and weaknesses on the top – on the topic that’s being covered, but you’re looking at about an estimated 15-20 hours a week, uh, you know, to do your assignments and readings and things of that nature and discussion forums. Now in the beginning you might do 20-25 just to get acclimated to the online platform if you’ve never done online course work before but obviously as you get more comfortable with it, you won’t have to put as much time to navigate the online platform.

Checking for another question here – one second. Now, to kind of go back to piggyback on my prior, you can take time off. Like I said, if you needed to, uh – Sue was asking if they needed to step out of the program. To reiterate, you can take a step out of the program, uh, you’ll just put, uh, a notice with your program coordinator or your student advisor and just saying a leave of absence to take a step out of the program. In the nine business core classes offered every semester and the concentration courses offered at certain time throughout the year and you’ll outline a plan when you – before you start classes with your program coordinator on how long you plan to graduate, if it’s the two years or if it’s three years, the outline on when you’re taking what course throughout that time period, based on your individual plan on when you want to graduate.

Dr. Young: Michael, there’s at least two things – I’ll try to remember – but those that I want to say. One thing is I mentioned that students change – can change their concentration after they enter the program. Uh, I would suggest that if you do change, based on the manner in which we offer courses, you would have to do that before semester – before you would start semester three. That would give you plenty of time to get introduced into the program, learn more about our concentrations and the faculty members that might be associated with that and then you can safely change within delaying any of your timeline as long as you do it as – uh, before semester three or technically semester three term fee but you will have time.

The second thing I wanted to, uh, just make a comment of was about applications. Uh, a lot of times we get questions about: “Well, my GPA wasn’t quite 3. Should I even apply?” And I will say it’s the collection of things that we look at. There’s never really always one thing that, uh, we would deny your application with if you didn’t meet that requirement. It’s the – it’s the collection so if you think maybe your GPA is low and it does appear to be around the 3.0 range, I would encourage you to submit and I would encourage you to be open and honest about why maybe you didn’t have some success previously. You know, so, uh, what we don’t necessarily like to read is when things are vague and people tend to just not talk about some of the issues that might have caused, uh, well, limited their success, let’s just say, earlier. So, uh, you know, not everybody’s application is going to be filled with stars and accolades so just be open in your cover letter and, like we said earlier, talk about your, uh, rationale for pursuing this degree. Talk about your experiences that you’ve had and how – your progression of your leadership and where you want to be in the near future. Uh, those are all important. Get good letters of recommendation. Don’t get ‘em – don’t get ‘em from your father or your brother, your cousin – get ‘em from people that you’ve worked with that have seen you in a leadership role, uh, and things like that. So make that meaningful. Take some time. Proofread your cover letter. All these little things are going to accelerate your chances of getting accepted.

Michael: Thank you, Dr. Young, for providing that detail. And to kind of echo that, you know, as a support system, your enrollment advisors, um, are there to work with you through the admission process to give you feedback on those things and recommendation letters, your goal statement, your essay – things of that nature to work with you, trying to give you your best chances for admissibility.

Now, I have another question here and, uh, Jill, if you could answer this for me in regards to: How many times can you attend the Leadership Development Program?

Jill: You can attend up to three…

Michael: Up to three?

Jill: …after that we could maybe talk about it. (Laughter)

Michael: Okay. And I know they’re kind of elaborating on that question, too, is kind of the interaction. What are things that I know for Leadership Development Program you guys have guest speakers, you have different activities and things of that nature, different breakout sessions based on concentrations – it is very interactive, it’s not – and then also I know we implemented later this year the application that people can download which creates another interactive tool between you and your classmates, what it gives is like an activity feed so then all the people that are participating can take photos in their breakout session and comments as well so a great another interaction tool. And also they also have guest speaker bios and things of that nature as well. And it’s all about leadership skills and leadership knowledge is what makes a great leader compared to great manager and they go into detail and they talk about, you know, important topics. One of the guest speakers earlier this year was talking about, uh, whether you like millennials or not, in the next, you know, the 5-10 years they’re going to be 75% of the workforce and how this is going to adapt to your workflow and compensation, things of that nature, to be more in line for millennials and things of that nature.

Now we have time for one more question, uh, and then if we don’t get to these – all your questions, by all means you can go on the left hand side and you can click on your advisor and set up an appointment and they’ll go in more detail and we’ll definitely be following up with the people we didn’t get a chance to answer all your questions as well. Uh, looking at – just checking here. Last question. And then how flexible, uh, are the professors, Dr. Young? I know you were talking about how supportive they are in regards to being able to reach out and things like that. A students asks here in regards to how supportive are they in regards to being able to reach out to them on a week-to-week basis?

Dr. Young: I mean that’s why we’re here. (Laughter) You know, I don’t know really how to answer that other than we expect you to reach out to us, uh, certainly if there’s times of need, if you don’t feel you’re positioned well in the course in terms of your grade, we expect that communication, quite frankly. Uh, so we’re here, like I said, twice a week; in a seven week course we’re here 14 times, actually 15 times in the virtual office hour and/or virtual class. We expect e-mails. We expect calls if you need to talk about something, uh, maybe that’s of a personal matter. I know I could tell you a number of times I’ve talked to students, uh, who I “needed to” – well, I won’t say that. I’ll just – they were in sort of a – I don’t know, what would be a – they’re worried, you know, they’re concerned…

Michael: Struggling.

Dr. Young: …struggling. There you go. They were struggling. And I’ve talked to students on the weekend for an hour. I’ve talked to students who have planned to have surgery that were worried about getting a homework assignment in and I’m saying: “No big deal. You know, we’ll work together. We will work through this. We want you to succeed. We will find a way.” You know, be proactive, reach out to your instructors, let them know. Don’t go dark for three weeks and then say: “You know, I missed those three weeks because, you know, this, that and the other reason.” Be up front, be proactive, reach out to them. They’re more than willing to help. I can tell you I staff the best faculty members I can possibly staff into this program because it’s important to us. You need a high quality faculty member to teach in an online environment. You don’t need a graduate assistant doing that at other programs. So the people that have won the most awards, who are constantly noted for their achievement in education are teaching in our programs.

Brittany: Awesome. Thank you, Dr. Young. So I want to thank everyone for all of your great questions. Again, please reach out to your enrollment advisors if you have any further questions or your questions were unable to be answered. Uh, I want to say a special thank you to all of our guests who attended today’s presentation. Again, I hope that you were able to find value in the information shared today. Jill and Dr. Young, as always a pleasure. Everyone, we are currently accepting applications for our upcoming semester. I encourage, if you’re interested in applying, to apply early, the earlier the better. Be sure to reach out to your enrollment advisor for the next step and to guide you through that process. We will also be sending out today’s presentation by e-mail so for those of you who want to review the information again, please feel free to do so or, if you know someone who is interested in obtaining an online MBA, please pass along the information as well. Thank you again and go, Bobcats.

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