Graduate Certificates and School Choices

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by TheKaiBoe, Feb 9, 2017.

  1. TheKaiBoe

    TheKaiBoe New Member

    Hi all,

    I am new and have scoured the forums to find an answer, but I have not found a direct answer to my question.

    I am looking to pursue a Graduate Certificate prior to obtaining an MBA and am unsure of which school and program to choose. My concern really just boils down to Harvard vs Stanford finance offerings.

    Stanford: Quantitative Methods in Finance Graduate Certificate


    Harvard: Corporate Finance Graduate Certificate

    Are both programs Graduate Level courses actually offered by the schools? Does one school have a more revered Graduate Certificate program than the other? Are the courses actually taught by Harvard or Stanford profs?

    If anyone has any insight into these particular programs or has thoughts on other Schools and there certificates, please do not hesitate to reply.

    I know both are great schools, but at the end of the day; what looks better on the resume. Also, if someone has completed one of these programs, please do share your thoughts!

    Thank you all very much, I truly appreciate your assistance!


    TEKMAN Semper Fi!

    I have heard of Harvard University's Extension School (HES) has lot of criticism, such as it is not a real Harvard. Anyway, if you live in the West coast of the United States...then Stanford University's Grad Cert, if you live in the east coast of the United States...then Harvard Extension School.
  3. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

    Choose the one that is less expensive.
  4. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator

    I don't see how you could go wrong with either one. I remember Dr. Bear once used the analogy of having a choice between 2 fresh, beautiful, tasty, and nutritious apples, one happens to be a Red Delicious, and the other a Golden Delicious.

    You're also not choosing between regional reputations; both Harvard and Stanford are going to be brand names, wherever you go.
  5. Stanislav

    Stanislav Well-Known Member

    In this case, choose the one where the courses' contents are the most appealing. The two programs seem to have different focus; choose the one you like. I'd lean towards Quantitative Methods if I was in the market for either, but this is solely based on my personal interest. Both are not full degrees but rather nice resume boosters.
  6. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    While it is true that your diploma will say "Harvard Extension School" it will also say, rather prominently above that, "Harvard University." Graduating from HES means you are a Harvard alumnus. Are there people who will try to talk crap about that accomplishment? Of course. Screw them. You are a Harvard graduate.

    This sort of nonsense is not unique to DL. Cornell University is an umbrella term that encompasses a number of schools and colleges. You can't jsut graduate from Cornell University. You have to graduate from a specific college (i.e. Arts and Sciences, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, School of Hotel Administration, School of Industrial and Labor Relations etc). And so it happens, very often among non-Cornell alumni, that some people arbitrarily label chunks of Cornell as "not really Cornell."

    I had a colleague, a graduate of SUNY Cortland, who unilaterally proclaimed that graduates of ILR and CALS weren't "real" Cornell graduates because those two schools are statutory schools. Unlike the rest of Cornell they are supported by the state and charge a lower tuition rate.

    It's hogwash. But more importantly it's hogwash that is very unlikely to ever impact your career. These opinions are in the minority. And that colleague, though she worked in HR, was content to denigrate a person's education without trying to deny them work.

    In general, I've found the alumni of these schools to be far more favorable in their opinion of these programs. This is likely because they, from their time at that school, recognize that the graduates of ALL parts of the university have an equal claim to school pride as them. And everyone else? Who cares?

    When dealing with Stanford and Harvard you're not really going to run into serious reputational issues either way. There are many Stanford grads on the East coast. There are many Harvard grads on the west coast. This isn't a situation where the influence of the name wanes as you move farther away from the campus.
  7. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator

    I had a teacher once who was a Harvard grad, and he took great pleasure in dumping on HES students and graduates. I finally asked him "If Harvard University is such a shady place that they're giving away substandard credentials under the guise of an extension school, what does that say about the legitimacy of your degree?"

    Dumb-ass look at first, then a diatribe about how he went to the "real Harvard". :rolleyes:
  8. TheKaiBoe

    TheKaiBoe New Member

    Thank you all for your thoughts and wisdom! I understand that Harvard technically is Harvard, even though it is an extension school. However, does Stanford have this issue, if we can actually call it an issue, as well? I believe I heard that a Stanford graduate certificate caries the same credit value as the Stanford graduate program(s), this unlike what I am hearing in regards to HES.

    In all, how is the Stanford Graduate Certificate written upon successful completion and on a resume vs. HES Graduate Certificate?

    Both schools are power names so I am not necessarily concerned about East v. West coast. In fact, are there any other Tier 1 programs who offer excellent finance Grad. Certs. that I should be looking into?

    Thanks again everyone; I truly appreciate you taking the time to assist me!
  9. novadar

    novadar Member

    This warms my heart Bruce. lol. I can't say that happens very often on DI. Thanks for sharing.
  10. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    If you wish to have the option to apply the certificate to a Harvard of Stanford MBA then you must know if the certificate is from an extension school. New York University told me they treat their extension school as an outside school and it's surely the same at Harvard or Stanford.
  11. TheKaiBoe

    TheKaiBoe New Member

    This is very important. Being that Harvard is an Extension School, does anyone know if Stanford views their Graduate Certificate program as an extension school as well? Or does Stanford consider the Grad. Cert. Program to be, well, part of Stanford actual?
  12. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    Your Stanford program appears to be from the Center for Professional Development. I'm not sure if the following answers your question so the only way to know is to ask them:

    May I apply units (credits) from a graduate course and/or graduate certificate program to a degree program?

    If applicable, you may apply up to 18 qualifying units earned from individual graduate level courses taken through the Non-Degree option program. Check with your advisor once you are accepted into a degree program, to be sure that the courses you have completed are applicable to the particular degree you are pursuing. Professional Certificate courses cannot be transferred to academic courses or academic programs.

    Frequently Asked Questions | Stanford Center for Professional Development
  13. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator

    I wouldn't get too hung up on semantics. Harvard Extension School is a part of Harvard University; HES graduates are considered Harvard alumni, with all the associated privileges, such as being able to join the Harvard Club.
  14. Lerner

    Lerner Well-Known Member

    Usually extension classes are on the basis of main courses taught in the faculties of Harvard or Stanford University by the faculty of these schools.
    I earned a credential via extension and further learning unit of a well respected top university.
  15. TomE

    TomE New Member

  16. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    I don't have a dog in this particular race, but if someone simply listed their degree as, e.g., "Harvard University, Master of Liberal Arts, Management", I personally would consider that perfectly honest. HES is fully part of Harvard University, and I don't see why its graduates need to accommodate the prejudices of others.
  17. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    What's getting lost is that TheKaiBoe is seeking a graduate certificate with credits transferable to an MBA.
  18. TheKaiBoe

    TheKaiBoe New Member

    This being true, I would just like to say thank you very much for all of the positive input. I truly appreciate you all helping me make an informed decision.

    I am very interested in the Harvard certificate, but have been given advice to actually attend a masters program in finance for 35-40k more (such as Gtown) and will be better off in regards to financial positions than what an MBA can offer anyways.

    I am simply trying to gather as much information as I can in regards to all available avenues in order to make the most intelligent investment. Whether it be HES cert for 15k or just attending an online Masters in Finance program instead of an MBA -that is the question.

    Thank you all, I greatly appreciate it

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