Seeking guidance.

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by Koolcypher, Sep 18, 2014.

  1. Koolcypher

    Koolcypher Member

    Hello fellow forum members, here is my quandary.

    I currently work as a consultant here in Latin America (Nicaragua). The firm that I work for concentrates on brokering business deals and acts as liaison between companies wanting to conduct business in Latin America. (I concentrate mainly on regulatory issues). My background is in public administration (BA) and both my Masters degrees are in writing/communications (MA Professional Writing and a MFA Creative Writing). I'm 40 years old and have had over 15+ years of managerial experience, civilian and military combined.

    My company wants me to go back to school and work on a management degree, does not matter MBA or MA Management or MA Leadership degree. I have about 15 months left of my Post 9/11 GI Bill and the company will cover the rest. Several years ago I started an MBA program at Florida International University, however, I was not thrilled with the program and left. Only completed three courses.

    I have been accepted to the following programs:

    1. Umass Isenberg's online MBA program.
    2. Michigan State Broad SOB online MS in Management, Strategy and Leadership.
    3. St. Bonaventure University's online MS Strategic Leadership program.

    The problem is that I'm still not in love with an MBA degree. My mind says yes, for all the obvious reasons, but my heart says no. I'm no thrilled about an MBA to say the least. However, I know that an MBA degree brings in more prestige. I really like MSU's program, I also like St. Bonaventure's program. I'm still trying to decide which. That is where you fine members come in. I'm in need of some guidance as to which route to take. Which degree makes more sense? Which one would you chose? Again, I'm pulling a Maniac here :wink1: trying to wrap my head as to which course to take. Thank you all for your time and guidance. :notworthy::hail:
  2. rebel100

    rebel100 New Member

    With three courses down you are something like 25% done with the MBA at FIU, have you looked into finishing there?
  3. Koolcypher

    Koolcypher Member

    Hi Rebel,

    I was not happy with the course format. Also, all of the textbooks were e-books. And you could only get them from the school. Most of these e-textbooks were in the $200-$300 prince range. Extremely expensive. Also, I don't mind starting from scratch elsewhere. I did not like FIU at all.:no:
  4. airtorn

    airtorn Moderator Staff Member

    OK. That made me laugh.

    I know that on a personal note, there are courses in standard MBA curriculums that would bore me to tears and push me towards the MS programs you are looking at.

    TEKMAN Semper Fi!

    I would recommend an MBA at UMass.
  6. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    What will be interesting to you in the leadership programs? It is all about personal preference. I think business administration is boring, but a specific focus on leadership would make me want to jump off a bridge. I'm suffering through a leadership course right now because there was nothing else I could take this semester to add up to 9 credits. I can't imagine having to do a whole degree program in leadership. The Michigan State University program might be a good compromise. MS in Management programs tend to be less quantitative than MBA programs, but still cover a variety of topics.
  7. DxD=D^2

    DxD=D^2 Member

    Since you're not fond of getting a MBA, why don't you shoot for WGU's MA in Management and Leadership....? This is probably a better "soft" skilled degree (people side of business) verse a MBA which is more focused on the bottom line, I feel.

    Online Management and Leadership Degree | Online Masters Degree
  8. Koolcypher

    Koolcypher Member

    hmm, seems like a good program. Since WGU relies on competency based training, instead of a more traditional course approach, I don't know how the VA would handle it. Also, I don't want to apply to any more programs due to the costs involved, i.e. application fees, transcript fees, letters of recommendation, time constraints and so on. I narrowed down my choices to the three programs mentioned earlier.
  9. DxD=D^2

    DxD=D^2 Member

    You might be able to get credit for those classes you took at Florida, since it's a competency-based program. It might be in your best interest, plus it's a cheap route to go. :)
  10. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    WGU does not accept transfer credits at the graduate level. Even if you're already familiar with a topic, you have to complete the whole task. Did you check to see which of those 3 programs accept transfer credits?
  11. Koolcypher

    Koolcypher Member

    Isenberg is willing to accept up to 6 credit hours. Bonaventure and Michigan do not accept transfer credits. So far I have them ranked in the following order.

    1. MSU
    2. Isenberg
    3. Bonaventure

    I like St. Bonaventure's program because it has an international travel component to it. Through the Bonaventure program I have the opportunity to participate in the Francis E. Kelley Oxford Program at Oxford University's Trinity College in England. This program offers leadership students a chance to work on a project for an international client. So I really, really like this component. And the best part is that I have no problem attending the three week residency course. But I also like MSU's program, and to a lesser extent Isenberg's program as well. :aargh4::aargh4::aargh4:
  12. Koolcypher

    Koolcypher Member


    Seeking more insight. I'm leaning towards the MBA at Isenberg, eventually I would like to set up my own boutique consulting firm here in Nicaragua. I feel that the combination of my public administration degree along with my professional writing degree, and the MBA will give me the greatest bang.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 16, 2014
  13. TCord1964

    TCord1964 New Member

    UMass seems like a pretty solid choice. You certainly can't go wrong with that program, and the name recognition will help with your consulting business.

    Isenberg also sounds like Heisenberg from Breaking Bad, so I give it extra points for that alone. :AR15firing:
  14. dlcurious

    dlcurious Member

  15. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    To me that brings to mind the Uncertainty Principle.:dunno:
  16. Koolcypher

    Koolcypher Member

    Well, I had to make a decision today. And I went with my gut feeling, I chose the Eli Broad School of Business at Michigan State University. Several factors lead me to this:

    1. I was not completely enamored with an MBA program.
    2. I wanted a program that had a leadership and management strategy component.
    3. Eli Broad's School of Business is ranked higher than Isenberg.
    4. MSU is a member of the AAU.
    5. Big Ten football = higher exposure. Higher exposure = more name recognition. Although I must agree UMass has great rep and name recognition.
    6. Even though I now live in Nicaragua, eventually I will like to go back to the States, and probably move into Big Ten territory. Therefore, a Big Ten university has more recognition, and carries more weight. Thanks to those that chimed in, your input was much appreciated.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 24, 2014
  17. Koolcypher

    Koolcypher Member

    Final update (I promise). I've just found that the program at MSU is administered through University Alliance (UA). Therefore, everything will be done through UA, registration, VA payment and so on. This gave me some pause. I don't mind intermediaries, however, when it comes to education I rather deal directly with the school and not some third party. Especially since I live outside the United States, I want it to run as smoothly as possible. I've heard many horror stories with regards to UA and the way they run the programs. So after much soul searching and a gut check, I've decided (final decision) to stay at Isenberg.
  18. taylor

    taylor New Member

    I agree. The tuition is extremely reasonable for a MA from University of Alabama.
  19. taylor

    taylor New Member

    Thanks for the update! I've read a quite a bit of your posts because a lot of the programs you post about interest me as well. I must've missed your posts regarding the FIU MBA program though. I checked their website today and noticed that they have a pretty good selection of online masters degrees along with their online MBA. But knowing that you abandoned ship on their MBA after 3 classes, I guess it makes me think twice about their other programs. Anyway good luck at UMass!

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