Why Notre Dame Mendoza is ending its STEM dual degree program

Mendoza College’s dual MBA/MSBA degree allowed students to combine a values-based business education at Notre Dame with a love of data. But the school eliminated the program and offered 2022 admits full-time MBA admission instead. picture of Notre Dame

Notre Dame eliminated a dual degree program that served as a science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) pathway.

The Mendoza College of Business is ending its MBA/Master of Science in Business Analytics dual degree program, which was included in Poets&Quants‘ full list of STEM programs at top business schools released in January, says Mike Mannor, associate dean of Mendoza’s MBA program. The MBA/MSBA is a four-semester, 68-credit program that conferred two degrees and promised students they would learn “everything you need to know about business and analytics.”

The program admitted 10 students last year and eight this year, Mannor said. Those who have been admitted will have the option of completing the program or entering the full-time MBA instead, he says.


Notre Dame’s Mike Mannor: MBA/MSBA is being ‘cut’

Colin Haran, a dual-degree MBA/MSBA student recently admitted to Notre Dame, says he and his classmates received no warning or explanation as to why Notre Dame “unplugged” the program, which was supposed to begin early June. . Instead, Haran says, they were told they would be admitted to Mendoza’s full-time MBA program, which begins in August.

“With my next enrollment date scheduled for the first week of June, I have just been informed today that Notre Dame is ending dual MBA/MSBA degrees for this coming year, despite having already admitted dozens of students in this program,” Haran wrote in an email to P&Q March 30.

Haran says that for those entering the full-time MBA after preparing for the dual program, the financial hit will be significant.

“Students have already signed summer leases in South Bend and left their workplaces earlier than they originally expected,” he says, estimating his personal cost after quitting his job. two months earlier than needed and paid two months of extra rent to be around $20,000.


However, Mannor says “we are canceling the program, but we are not ending it immediately, so students who are already admitted to the program can start this program and complete it, but we will not admit any more students in the future.” Mannor says the school will meet with each MBA/MSBA entrant to discuss whether they wish to complete the program or enter the full-time MBA.

Notre Dame now has five STEM majors in the full-time MBA: Business Analytics, Corporate Finance, Digital Marketing & Marketing Analytics, Investments, and Supply Chain & Operations Management. With these, having the dual-degree STEM option became unnecessary, Mannor says.

“This program was created to have a STEM option because we didn’t have a STEM MBA at the time,” he says. “At that time, around 2018, there were questions about, ‘How can we even get a STEM MBA? There was very strong resistance among university academic councils and provosts to calling what we do in business school a STEM degree, and that has obviously changed a lot in the last couple of years.

“It is certainly not the case that there is no longer a need for commercial STEM programs. There are.”

The school’s other dual degrees are a three-year JD/MBA; a four-year JD/MBA; a dual MBA/Science degree; a dual MBA/engineer degree; and an MBA/Master of Global Affairs dual degree. Mannor adds that for students who still want to get both the MSBA and MBA, “we will still have that available to them, we just won’t have it as an overall program. They would have to do it sequentially, and we would work with them to do it.


On the MBA/MSBA program site, Mendoza described its program as including “a solid introduction to business analysis in the spring” of the first year, giving students “a foundation for your internship experience.” Returning for a second year, “you take the required MSBA and MBA courses, then choose from a wide range of elective offerings based on your career goals.”

Each of the four semesters for MBA/MSBA students consisted of two seven-week modules, separated by an intensive one-week session “focused on developing and applying your analytical skills”. The program’s electives, which were run in partnership with Mendoza Executive Education, included Sports Analytics, Social Media Analytics, Strategic Business Technology, Supply Chain Analytics, and Healthcare Analytics.

On the MBA/MSBA program page, Mendoza College includes a passage titled “Integral Leadership Development,” in which it describes the program as an “iconic leadership experience.”

“Our dual degree MBA/MSBA students will not only master truly data-driven decision-making, but will also have a unique opportunity to combine this with strong leadership skills to advance their careers,” the school states. “Leadership skills are highly sought after by recruiters and often harder to find in business schools. All business schools claim to teach effective leadership, but what does that really mean?

“At Mendoza, that means leading with confidence, from your core values, and being authentic. We want our students to understand their own strengths and weaknesses, then translate them into effective leadership skills that are as unique as the individual and applicable. at all levels of the organization.


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