UMass, West Texas A&M, Uni of Texas- Tyler...

Discussion in 'Business and MBA degrees' started by sonya316, Feb 26, 2015.

  1. sonya316

    sonya316 New Member

    Hello everyone,
    I'm am stuck in such a rut! I cannot choose a school for online MBA in Healthcare... So many options and I barely know anything about any of these schools.
    I want to pick a school where it is highly recognized but at the same time affordable and also not crazy difficult and stressful (I have a full time job in Healthcare Administration). I want to finish between 14 to 24 months (at most). My main choice has been UMass Amherst, however I recently found out that taking 2 classes at a time will take 2 to 2.5 years to complete. Normally I've heard 1 class at a time would take that long and 2 classes would take nearly half the time.
    I recently came across West Texas A&M...which is different than Texas A&M but I found I can finish sooner than 2 years, plus the GMAT will be waived since I have an undergrad GPA of higher than 3.0, BUTTTT is this school considered a good school?? Is it comparable to UMass? What about comparable to Texas A&M? I live in California and want the school I choose to get me a good job/recognition when seen on my resume.
    And lastly- University of Texas at Tyler. This school, I know, is not looked at like the other two are....but it's way affordable and can be completed in 12 months which is what has caught my eye.
    Any recommendations of schools other than what I've listed? Any advice? Opinions? I want to spend at most $35k.
    Ahhh help me! Please :)
  2. japhy4529

    japhy4529 House Bassist

    If you're not opposed to considering an MHA (Master of Health Administration), then I would have a look at the following program from LSU-Shreveport: ONLINE Master of Health Administration

    This program is AACSB-accredited, available 100% online, GMAT is not required unless your GPA is < 2.5. Best of all, tuition is only $351.44/credit (for in AND out of state applicants). This 30-credit program will only set you back around 10k! Note: there are two foundation courses which may or may not be required depending upon your background. Both courses can be taken simultaneously with the MHA courses.
  3. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    UMass - Amherst and Texas A&M are nationally-ranked and nationally-known universities. West Texas A&M and UT Tyler are regional universities that don't even have much of a regional reputation in Texas. They are kind of just there -- not good or bad.
  4. sonya316

    sonya316 New Member

    Thank you for your advice! I personally don't want an MHA for the reason that I'm not sure if I want to stick with Healthcare forever. I figured I'd get a well-rounded degree, such as an MBA, so I will have different options. I do want a concentration on Healthcare Management since it's an addition to the MBA and since it's my current profession.
  5. sonya316

    sonya316 New Member

    Thank you for your advice! I personally don't want an MHA for the reason that I'm not sure if I want to stick with Healthcare forever. I figured I'd get a well-rounded degree, such as an MBA, so I will have different options. I do want a concentration on Healthcare Management since it's an addition to the MBA and since it's my current profession.
  6. major56

    major56 Active Member

    While West Texas A & M or UT-Tyler is not considered as a nationally known brand name (e.g., as Sanantone remarks … I concur, both are simply regional universities just as there are comparable universities in CA). Even so, WTAMU is a member university of the second largest university system (Texas A & M University System) in the U.S. and UT-Tyler the University of Texas System. Both university B-Schools are equally AACSB accredited. Regarding the additional comment by Sanantone referencing WT and UT-Tyler (e.g., “They are kind of just there -- not good or bad.” … could be measured as merely impulsive opinion. Consider taking such a position as possible cynical brashness on her part.

    If you’re seeking a [highly] recognized /ranked brand MBA credential … prepare to amend your funding limits. Part-time /online AACSB MBA programs will vary greatly in costs, from quite low (most affordable, e.g., including those programs with /without in-state residence tuition adjustments) to a quite high price tag (e.g., sticker-shock—Duke at $147K) … with a lot of variance amongst the in between (most programs), and culminating at around a $37K average AACSB Online MBA | Best Online Colleges | Best Online Universities | Remember though, that the definitive test for any degree is the reputation (not necessarily purely the brand pedigree) of the school that grants it. Nevertheless, the higher up the rankings list you go, the more likely it is that the online option is as close a carbon copy as you might get if you were on campus. Consider first and foremost, that the MBA is but a piece of the complete package. The degree can open doors, but then your experience, drive, character /reputation, ongoing learning external the classroom, as well as a comprehensive knowledge of office politics—will be that which drives your career opportunities and subsequent career progression. No doubt there are talented MBAs from top tier programs, as well as lessor tier—yet too, there are also top tier B-School graduates, along with the lessor tiered MBAs, who are likewise arrogant, immature, and are deficient in self-awareness /-leadership, competence level, soft skills, etc., etc. who will sooner or later damage healthy teams and consequently firms.

    Note: I would consider all regional universities in Texas as just that … regional. For example re Sanatone’s current alma mater, Texas State (formerly Southwest Texas State) although larger in student enrollments in contrast to WTAMU or UT-Tyler, is still a regional university without national name recognition either. Even so, we could reasonably accept that the Texas State program, at a minimum, does /is meeting Sanantone’s PhD endeavor.
  7. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    My reasons for choosing Texas State University for a PhD program are completely irrelevant to the OP's situation. If I had previously mentioned consideration of University Of Maryland (a national university ranked #1 in criminology) and Texas State University (a regional university unranked in criminology because the program is very new), then there might be some relevance. Nationally-known schools that are highly-ranked in criminology were never considered by me when I was contemplating starting a PhD related to criminal justice. Texas State University and Prairie View A&M were the only two schools I was considering in this field.

    Because the OP was considering schools like Texas A&M and UMass - Amherst and is asking how West Texas A&M and UT Tyler compare, then the obvious implication is that there is concern about things like reputation, prestige, alumni network, resources, etc. There is a huge gulf between the two groups, so it is only fitting to say so regardless of one's personal attachments and biases. West Texas A&M and UT Tyler are in completely different realms from the other two schools. They aren't even among the top schools in the West. If one were looking at Trinity University, then there might be an argument for regional prestige.

    Your personal attack against me because your feelings were hurt over my neutral comments on your alma mater were immature and completely unwarranted.
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 27, 2015
  8. major56

    major56 Active Member

    Chill Sanatone … there was no personal attack … merely pointed-out opinionated bias (hardly considered as neutral comments) regarding your initial posting; It was apparent the OP pitched-out a spectrum in considered MBA programs (re UMass-Isenberg, WTAMU, and/or UT-Tyler). The OP requested assistance per her inquiry (e.g., brand notoriety, pricing /affordability, completion time, MBA benefit, etc. I made a somewhat detailed and objective effort to do just that. On the other hand … reassess your one-liner contribution.

    P.S. Don’t be presumptuous in your deduction … my feelings were not hurt whatsoever per your posting. Instead, it could be that yours were when the quip response was addressed (?).
    P.P.S. Why choose to begin your reaction with Texas State University comment/s?

    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 27, 2015
  9. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    Well, let's see. Two paragraphs of your post were about me and Texas State University. What does that have to do with anything? The two situations aren't even remotely the same. Not only were my criteria and professional goals for choosing a program different, but the programs and schools being considered are completely different. PhD vs Masters. On Ground vs Online. Criminal Justice vs Business Administration. You get the gist.

    Saying that those school's reputations are neither good nor bad is neutral. What else would you call it? I have no side in this argument. However, you attended West Texas A&M and felt the need to dedicate half of your post to my personal choices in schools.
  10. freddyboy

    freddyboy Member

    All of these are excellent programs. They are part of national brand university systems.
    I'm going to suggest you also look into the University of South Dakota. Online MBA with AACSB at $414 per credit hour. USD is one of the best national universities in the country, ranked somewhere in the 30s or 40s by one of the ranking services. It's a great value.
    Since you live in California, have you looked into UCLA, Cal State, etc? They may have online programs and are likely preferred int your state.
  11. major56

    major56 Active Member

    Once again, you begin your posting with Texas State University and you (?). Who’s really upset? The [main] body of my response to the OP was to address her inquiry, along with my opening caveat re your opening post. BTW, you said more than merely re the not good /not bad … didn’t you. Moreover, what if not a simply impulsive opinion did you ever come up with the “…not good or bad”? Both WTAMU and UT-Tyler’s B-schools, and yes, even Texas State are AACSB accredited, just as is UMass-Isenberg, as well as top-tiers Harvard-HBS, Stanford-SGS, and Penn-Wharton, Virginia-Darden, Chicago-Booth, Northwestern-Kellogg, MIT-Sloan, NYU-Stern, Dartmouth-Tuck, etc. In that the OP inquiry re her considering the MBA … what standards would differentiate a good from a bad MBA program, given that, “Less than 5% of the world's 13,000 business programs have earned AACSB Accreditation.” AACSB Accreditation | Importance in Choosing a Business School Moreover, only 25 percent of U.S. business schools reach AACSB accreditation. Such would objectively offer, at a minimum, surely the idea by most that both the WTAMU and UT-Tyler B-schools would be measured to be no less than good. I see no meaningful correlation in your comment (e.g., “They are kind of just there -- not good or bad.”). Such is both a hollow and petty statement; and it’s simply unreliable. Furthermore, your analogy as to your neutrality is flawed … as well as bogus. Bottom-line, you’re just unable to tangibly support your statements. It was evident they were not thought-out prior to your likely haste in posting. Nevertheless at his juncture, this particular exchange is futile. :banghead: There’s just no money in any further response to you on this subject …

    Pending another time,


    P.S. As regards the gist comment … you’re simply outside your expertise (e.g., consider staying within the CJ arena rather than pontificating on the subject of categorizing B-schools).
  12. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    This sentence is hypocritical because you started your first response to the OP with a paragraph about me.

    If a school has a nearly non-existent reputation outside of its immediate area, then it neither has a good nor bad reputation. It is really that simple.

    Outside of my PhD courses, I have taken more classes in business than I have in CJ. There is one thing I do know as a Texas resident of nearly 30 years, hardly anyone ever talks about UT Tyler or West Texas A&M. Maybe you should stop dedicating posts to me when they do nothing to answer the OP's questions because you really know very little about me.
  13. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    I have a friend who left healthcare after 12 years and came to manufacturing. He's doing great. He's also incredibly grateful that he didn't earn the MHA the local colleges were pushing on him as he fears he wouldn't have been able to make the leap if his Masters had the word "Healthcare" in it.

    He earned his MBA in Finance. The reasoning was pretty simple; he wanted to eventually rise through the ranks of his hospital via the chain leading up to the CFO chair. When he left, he found his MBA in Finance was incredibly portable.

    When I see people with specialized MBAs (like Healthcare) coming out of their sector, it gives me pause for just a moment because it creates a new question. If you work in healthcare, and have an MBA specializing in healthcare, why are you now standing before my desk which is decidedly outside the healthcare industry? Sure, it's still an MBA. But since every school offers a dozen or so concentrations for MBA students, HR is increasingly exercising more scrutiny on these degrees.

    An MBA in Finance is not interchangeable with an MBA in Entrepreneurship. I once had an applicant rejected by the hiring manager for an accounting job. When he didn't get the job he called me screaming because, in his opinion, his MBA should have pushed him over the top for a degree which only required a B.S. Thing is, his MBA in sustainable business didn't serve any direct purpose for an accounting department (and would also not have qualified him to sit for the CPA exam, eligibility for which is required for all of our "accountant" title jobs).

    Point is, I get that you don't want to draw yourself into a corner with an MHA. But an MBA-HCA might do that as well. If you are considering leaving healthcare, what are you thinking of doing? If you want to go into corporate finance, get an MBA in Finance. If you want to get into HR, get an MBA in HR (or an MS in HR). Both of those degrees will still find a home in a healthcare setting but will also transfer more easily to other industries.
  14. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    Side note on regional universities:

    University loyalty cannot be predicted when you are job searching. My company has a serious bromance with the Rochester Institute of Technology and Clarkson University. They are both fine schools. However, I keep finding myself having to remind hiring managers that we need to hire the most qualified candidates, not just the alumni of their own alma mater. I suspect if you took a degree from RIT and moved to Texas, the magnetic pull of that degree would wear off.

    Hiring managers (in a variety of industries) don't generally care about rankings. I have seen some managers only want to hire people who went to their schools. I have seen other hiring managers latch onto one or two other schools for unspecified reasons. My Clarkson University groupies have, in the past, mass-rejected engineering applicants with degrees from Cornell University, Binghamton University, Syracuse University and PennState so that they could shorten their list down to Clarkson grads (then I go into the system, un-reject most of them, force people to sit through a thoroughly unpleasant HR lecture and so on). It seems ridiculous that someone would reject someone from Cornell so that they could hurry their way down the list to get to RIT or Clarkson, but such is regional bias.

    I have had other managers create silly little rankings of their own without any basis in reality ("Well, he has an MBA from Columbia, but it's not like it's Harvard. Let's just call in that guy who went to the University of Scranton.").

    My point here is that business school rankings generally matter in a few key industries especially when you are competing for a few key companies. You aren't getting on the Managing Director track at GoldmanSachs with your MBA from Strayer. But that MBA from Strayer is still going to be more than adequate for a large number of employers.

    Positive reputation is good. Go for a school that has prestige if you can afford it. Just realize that your school's prestige may very well be overruled by a hiring manager's regional bias.
  15. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    I doubt employers in California will have a regional bias for a school that's in Texas. ROI is a more objective measure of a degree's utility. You can't ignore that many who shell out a lot of money for top MBA programs generally get the biggest returns. You also can't underestimate schools with excellent national networks. Texas A&M might not have a top 20 business school, but Aggies are known for being among the best alumni for nationwide networking.

    Best Business Schools 2014: Is My MBA Worth it? ROI at Top Schools - Businessweek
    Business Schools With The Best ROI - Business Insider
    Good-value MBAs: Payback time | The Economist
  16. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    I never said that. I said that a school with a national reputation might not be able to overcome regional bias.

    I'm sure that's great comfort to unemployed people who have MBAs. I'm not ignoring that top MBA programs get the biggest returns. I directly addressed that fact. If you earn an MBA from Wharton, you are likely going to use that degree to get a job with a top firm on Wall Street. And that degree is what you need to get in the front door, in many cases. If, however, you are an Assistant Branch Manager at a rental car company, then no, a Wharton MBA is not going to propel you upward unless you intend to change jobs (and likely industries).

    If you're entering a residential MBA program fresh out of undergrad and about to embark on a career, then yes, go for the best.

    If you're a working adult who needs the degree to advance with your current company, get as much reputation as you can afford.

    Again, national networks are great for some people in some industries at some career levels. It may mean the difference between being employed or not for a C-level executive. It might matter a great deal for a non-executive VP. But if you are say, an HR Generalist, the national network is unlikely to put you some place regular job searching wouldn't.

    The things you are saying are not "wrong" they just don't universally apply to every working adult.
  17. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    They don't apply to every working adult, but they do apply to someone who is looking for a program with a good reputation and name recognition. What is applicable to the OP is that he or she is working in California while looking at schools in other parts of the country. Everyone has anecdotal stories, but I'm just the type to trust statistics more. Rankings do matter when it comes to job placement.

    Best & Worst 2014 MBA Job Placement At Top Schools | Poets and Quants

    I wish I had access to this whole list, but Clark Atlanta University (they have a business school ranked in the bottom quartile) had the worst job placement rate out of 126 ranked business schools. Their job placement was 26% after three months.
    10 MBA Programs That Lead to Jobs - US News
  18. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    The key issue, and the fundamental flaw with your analysis here, is that I'm not offering you "anecdotal evidence" and you offering statistical findings 1) not prepared by you and 2) only tangentially relevant to the topic at hand do not a solid case make.

    Job placement rates imply that you are unemployed at the conclusion of your program. If you are already employed and working on a program while working full-time, you are in a completely different pool of applicant. Besides that, having A job and obtaining THE job you are after are two completely different things. If I just left a residential MBA program and secure a job as an entry level analyst at Morgan Stanley, my school gets to count me in their job placement rate. That's great for the kid starting fresh in a career. If I enroll in an MBA program while working full-time, I presumably am earning that degree to further my already established career. I'm looking to make that leap from HR Business Partner to Director of HR or beyond. Either way, this career transition (whether realized or not) is not captured in "your" numbers thus making them largely irrelevant to what is being asked.

    Your magazine articles don't address that key difference. And since you seem to have absolutely no basis to know what you're talking about, you're relying extensively on those articles to tell a story they do not tell and then proclaiming that your personal opinions are based on statistics. Sorry, that isn't how it works. And I'm not going to let you bait me into your second buttHurt of this thread.

    If you are currently employed at a company and are seeking an MBA to further your career, you should be asking yourself a few things:

    1) Do I intend (or am I at least willing) to move? If not, then you should look at what programs have a regional bias you can use in your favor. In my case, that would mean earning an MBA from RIT. Local employers love RIT and it has a solid regional reputation. If I do intend (or foresee a move somewhere on the horizon) then I should shoot for as much prestige as I can reasonably afford. My MBA from Drexel might not be able to overcome a regional bias if I move anywhere near say, Notre Dame, but it gives me my best shot.

    2) Is an MBA the best credential to strengthen my current skillset? If you are a software developer hoping to add an MBA to your resume, I would suggest you secure certifications first. In the HR world, an SPHR is almost universally required for Director of HR jobs. A candidate with a bachelors degree and the SPHR is likely going to have an edge over someone with an MBA who doesn't have that certification. As I said earlier, if you really think you are going to get out of healthcare, consider what you want to do and consider getting a more universal MBA.

    3) If you can't get a nationally ranked school (for whatever reason), getting a degree from an AACSB school is a good approach. That school doesn't necessarily need a standalone reputation. A school that is part of the State University of New York (or any state system) is going to have a reasonable degree of prestige associated with it just by virtue of being a public institution. Sure, it's great to go with the top ranked schools. But these schools are also a solid choice.
  19. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    And oh, Sanantone?

    From your own article:

  20. novadar

    novadar Member

    At least in the software industry (from my perspective) this is less of an issue. I, for one, have an MPA, I started my career working in government but transitioned to the private sector without a hitch. I have been told on a few occasions that having a Masters degree was a great advantage and that it only made sense that I earned an MPA based on where I started.

    OMMV, other's mileage may vary.

    I think far too often there is way too much concentration on degrees and qualifications at the expense of skills. Aside from those careers where there is a legal/regulatory need for specific degrees I see that the specifics of the degree matter very little. The MHA, like the MPA and MBA are management degrees. If the person is capable of doing the work and fits with the organization I think they should be given a chance.

    Many folks, like myself, never anticipated leaving a career they chose when they were in their 20's but life changes things. There is much more value in having worked in any job exercising judgment, showing an ability to meet deadlines, and exceeding expectations. All of those things have more impact on the effective execution of organizational goals than a precise arrangement of letters.

    No sandbox and I am not trying to pick a fight here Neuhaus. Just calling it like I see it.


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