The Smeal Executive MBA program uniquely fosters one-on-one interaction between students and faculty because of its small class size and meeting schedule. Our faculty are especially focused on helping you gain the knowledge you need and help you implement it immediately.
Smeal Executive MBA professors stay overnight on class weekends with the students and are accessible and approachable. When you go home, they are ready to talk over the phone or via e-mail. Not only does the program encourage one-on-one interaction, but also our faculty expect it.
Mike McCalley - Smeal EMBA 2004
When Mike changed jobs mid-way in the program, he faced a new challenge. He had taken over as a brand manager for a large industrial manufacturing company. When he started, he was asked to do a full product line analysis and work immediately on eliminating specific items that weren't performing.
"Shortly after I started, and after significant effort on analysis (with some help from my EMBA cohort), I was convinced that products targeted by elimination by Senior Management were actually successful. However, that was hard to see because of an accounting and financial reporting system that I felt did not take in to account key items learned in my MBA Managerial Accounting class. This put me in direct conflict with the Senior Management, and I needed help. Over a series of class weekends, conference calls, and web meetings I met with my marketing, finance, and accounting professors and reviewed all of the data. The professors confirmed my analysis.
This gave me the confidence that I needed; that my thoughts on keeping the product lines were in fact valid and make my case to management. And, while valid, I felt I still needed help "pitching and positioning" my findings. I immediately called on my Business Communication professors, honed my presentation, and with their help in preparation, gained buy-in from the firm. By the end of the quarter, the strategy proved successful and I had exceeded my goals at my new firm.
It's been six years since that presentation and I've moved on to a global role at a different firm. I still communicate regularly with the professors I met and learned from as a student and have since engaged professors in various departments. At every turn, I relied on Smeal's professors and the EMBA team for help, and they have delivered each and every time. I'm not sure that would have happened at a school that didn't have the combination of a class size of 40-45 students, internationally ranked and recognized faculty, and the resources of one of the nation's largest business schools."