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UK and UofL work on joint executive MBA

by Denise Fitzpatrick, UofL, communications and marketing; Jay Blanton, University of Kentucky, university relations last modified Jul 23, 2013 09:30 AM

Kentucky’s two largest business schools are developing a plan to offer the state’s first joint Master of Business Administration (MBA) program for executives.

UK and UofL work on joint executive MBA

David Blackwell, dean, UK Gatton College of Business and Economics; Shirley Willihnganz, UofL provost; Eli Capiluoto, president, University of Kentucky; and Charles Moyer, dean, UofL College of Business.

David Blackwell, dean of the University of Kentucky’s Gatton College of Business and Economics, and Charles Moyer, dean of the University of Louisville’s College of Business, announced the initiative today at the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce Business Summit and Annual Meeting at the Louisville Marriott Downtown.

UK and UofL have agreed in principle to create a new MBA to prepare experienced mid-level executives for senior leadership. The program would be open to executives from both profit and not-for-profit organizations.

“We’re pleased to expand our collaboration with UK to include a quality master’s of business administration degree,” said UofL President James Ramsey. “Combining the expertise of the state’s two largest business schools will help keep our most talented executives in Kentucky and boost our economy.”

The joint program and would likely start in fall 2014 subject to normal approval processes at both universities. Classes would be held every other weekend to allow students to keep their existing jobs.

Faculty members at the two schools still need to flesh out courses for the program, which would be about 17 months long. Half of the courses would take place in Louisville and half in Lexington, with UofL and UK also splitting teaching duties, revenue and expenses.

About 250 students at UofL and 175 students at UK are now pursuing an MBA degree. The joint program could add 40 to 45 new MBA students a year, mostly from the Louisville, Lexington and Cincinnati metropolitan areas, Moyer and Blackwell said.

“This program would give students a unique opportunity to learn from the best faculty members at the state’s two leading business schools and draw on a large pool of business leadership resources in Kentucky’s two largest metropolitan areas,” Moyer said.

The new MBA also would enhance Kentucky’s business climate by allowing its emerging senior leaders to obtain an advanced education on their own turf, Blackwell said.

“In the past, many rising executives have had to leave the state to find a quality MBA program,” he said. “This would allow them to pursue a world-class program right here at home.”

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