WSU MBA Fall 2019 Info Session with Program Coordinator

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Jake: Hello everyone. This is Jake here, with Washington State University. Welcome to our Washington State University’s webcast for the Online MBA program. We’re super excited to have you guys here. We’re excited to be teaching a little bit about the program. And we hope you all are having a great day. Thank you for joining us on, probably what’s most likely your lunch break here. So, before we get started, I do want to just cover a few logistics as we’re going through the presentation. So, in order to minimize background noise, the presentation is in broadcast only mode. This means that you can hear us, but we can’t hear you. So, if you have any questions, you can go to the bottom right of your screen, there’s a Q and A feature down there. Just go ahead and chat your question in there. We’ll be covering questions at the end during our Q and A session. So, we’re going to do our best to answer as many of those as possible. If we don’t get around to your specific question, we have a team of enrollment advisors here that will follow up with you, and answer your questions personally.

Jake: So, we are recording this webinar. It will be emailed to you after the presentation, as well as posted to our website in the next couple of weeks here. As far as the agenda goes for our webinar here today, we’re going to do some introductions first. Then we’re going to go over the history and rankings of Washington State and our MBA program. As well as the accreditation of our MBA. After that, we will dive into the Online MBA program overview, just talking about what our program really has to offer for students. And then we will go over those admissions requirements. Make sure everybody has an understanding of what the application process looks like for our MBA candidates.

Jake: From there, we are going to do a day in the life of the student experience. Get to see what it really looks like from a first person view of a students experience. We’ll talk about that international field study that we have. A really fun opportunity for our students. And at the end, like I mentioned earlier, we do have a live Q and A session that we will be touching on.

Jake: So first off, we will start with some of those introductions. My name is Jake Moscinski here. I’m at the top of the screen. I am Enrollment Advisor here on Washington State University’s MBA program. It’s really my job to be helping students through that admissions process. Always excited to be helping students. Thank you guys for joining us here on the call today.

Chelsea: All right. Hi everybody. My name is Chelsea Gese. And I’m the Online Graduate Programs Coordinator. So, I work really closely with Jake and all of the other enrollment advisors. And we just work together with the students throughout the admissions process.

Matthew: Good afternoon everybody. My name is Matt Beer. I’m the Military and Veterans Affairs Manager here at the Carson College of Business. So, I work primarily with our military and veteran students. Thanks for joining us today.

Andrea: Hi, I’m Andrea Lattanner. I am an online MBA student with WSU. And I’m a Program Manager at Microsoft Philanthropies.

Chelsea: All right. Thanks Andrea. So, to get things started I want to give everyone a little background information on Washington State University, so you know who we are, what’s important to us, and why. So we’re located in Pullman, Washington, which is the Eastern part of the State. We’re less than 10 minutes from the Idaho border and the city of Moscow, Idaho, which is actually another college town. So, that makes things pretty fun around here.

Chelsea: We are the land-grant institution in Washington State, which is something we’re very proud of, and something that we definitely honor as a college and a university. So a little history on what a land-grant university is … In 1890s the Federal Government granted land to each state to establish a college. The land was granted to answer the demands for practical and accessible education for all. So, in 1890, Washington State University was established as the land-grant university. The mission was to serve the public by providing accessible and affordable education, and we continue to make that original land-grant mission to serve an integral part of what we do. And we do that in many ways. One big way is by providing education to those who are willing and able to attend.

Chelsea: Let’s see here. A little bit about our legacy. We have over 125 years of alumni legacy. Sorry. There are Cougs everywhere in the world. And there are so many great stories that people tell about, where they’ve seen a Coug, or met a Coug or heard from a Coug. Really no matter where you travel, you’ll usually run into at least one person wearing something WSU. I know I always do when I travel, especially in airports. And when that happens you say, “Go Cougs! [inaudible 00:05:39].” And it’s pretty funny. For those of you who are on the West side, you’re probably pretty familiar with this, especially if you’re in Seattle. That’s pretty common … In the Pacific Northwest. But, certainly there’s Cougs all over the world.

Chelsea: The Carson College of Business, has been in operation for 60 years. And graduate business education under a different name. And we are definitely a leader in online degree programs. We have more than 20 years of working in the online education phase. Which is very unusual for any universities really to have that much time and ability and background in online education. And then, lastly, we have an international network of corporate and academic alliances.

Chelsea: So, a little bit about accreditation and rankings. We are AACSB. So, when you’re looking for any MBA program, something that’s really important to look at, is the accreditation. The AACSB is the association that accredits business schools. And fewer than 2% of business schools in the world are accredited at a bachelors, a masters and doctoral levels. And Washington State University is one of those schools. We actually just received reaccreditation for the next 5 years. And 5 years doesn’t mean that we won’t be accredited in 5 years. It just means, that’s how the program works. And we were just recently reaccredited. So when you’re thinking about your education, you really want to go to a school that is known or recognized by it’s peers as providing quality education in really any sort of program. And that’s the kind of thing accreditation does for you. The accreditations are done by other deans and tenure professors of business schools through visits and like, declaration of who we are, and what we do. So, just … Accreditation something you definitely really want to look at.

Chelsea: And then, just a little bit about rankings. You can see our rankings at the bottom of the slide here. We’re ranked 13th in online MBA programs by US News and World Report, which is great. The top 5%, and we’re ranked number 8 in friendliness to veterans. We certainly don’t chase rankings. Our priority really is to offer education to everyone willing and able. But of course, we are happy when we see them.

Matthew: All right, as I mentioned before my name is Matt Beer, I’m the Military and Veterans Affairs Manager here at Washington State. We really do honor the service of our current, active duty military folks or our veterans. And so we try to take care of them as best we can. We have about 10 and 15% of our cohort in the MBA program is active duty military or veteran students. And we do offer some benefits. The tuition is reduced, the application fee is waived for those students, and we do have a team of folks here to help you process your benefits. And that’s their email address up there on the screen, if that helps you get in the right spot.

Matthew: Some other programs we do, we have a [inaudible 00:09:06] conversations where we invite all our students actually. We invite our non-military students to participate in this too. Where we would talk about leadership, culture, and management. We also invited some guest speakers, we conduct some workshops. And those are really focused around career services. So, that really has been beneficial for the military members who are leaving the military, transitioning out, retiring, et cetera. And provide them with some tools as they make that, that leap. If you’re a military or veteran student, or you have someone you know who is kind of curious about that, feel free to plug them in with myself. I’m happy to answer any questions, and am looking forward to working with them.

Jake: Awesome. Thanks Matt and Chelsea. A lot of really good information there. Where should you have a military webinar, that will be coming up. So, if that’s something of interest to you, feel free to reach back out to us after this webinar and we can talk about the specifics there … But yeah, I want to talk about … a little bit more about the actual meat and bones of the program. Dive into the MBA curriculum right now. So, our program, it is 100% online, in the truest of senses. So, there’s no mandatory times that you need to be traveling for our programs, but we do have some good optional stuff we can talk about in just a bit. The program can be completed in as few as 22 to 29 months. Now, the reason for that range in the length of time, is due to those foundational courses. So, if you’re coming from a business educational background, if you have a business undergraduate degree, we have the opportunity to request a waiver for those classes. It’s seven of them.

Jake: Now if you’re coming from a non business background, but maybe you took a business class here or there, We can look at your transcripts and potentially waive some of those. Our program, we do have four different specific concentrations for the MBA as well as a general option. So, basically these concentrations are made up of the three elective classes that you have throughout the program. So, we have a marketing concentration, a finance concentration, hospitality business management, and international business. You do not have to choose one of these. Again, that general option is available to you. Or maybe you just want to take a marketing class, a finance class, and an international business class and really customize the degree in that manner. But, there are some benefits to picking a concentration, which I will touch on in the next slide.

Jake: As far as our content goes, we do have a nice mix of both, asynchronous and synchronous content. So, you know, what asynchronous really means is that you can be doing this on your own time. You’ll have your weekly assignments, usually due, Sunday, 11:59 Pacific Time. And it’s going to be up to you to be, you know, finding when you want to be spending your time completing this. Now, at the same time though, we don’t want to take away the benefit that live lectures, and interacting with your professors and students in the program really has. So, we do have these live sessions that occur each week. These will usually be, you know, sometime between 6 to 9 PM Pacific Time. After work hours, its a really good opportunity to be connecting, with not only those professors and asking your questions, but also learning what your other students in the program … Getting to know the other people who admitted in the MBA here. Because we do have a really strong network of professionals coming from a varied background.

Jake: At the end of our program, we’re going to wrap up with a capstone project, which is a really exciting opportunity. It’s going to be your last three classes in it. We section it into capstone A, B, and C. Essentially, what it is, is creating a full business plan from start to finish. So, in that capstone A, you will identify a business opportunity with your group. Then you will create the actual business plan around it in capstone B, and ultimately create a video presentation, essentially as if you’re pitching your business idea to a board of investors. It’s a really good way to culminate all the skills that we teach along the way. And finally in the program, we do have an international field study. Really, really good networking opportunity as well as diving into the culture of another place, Which we will dive into more in depth down the line in this webinar.

Jake: Now, as far as the concentrations, what that actually looks like from a students perspective in the program, is what we call MBA certificates. So, let’s say you choose the marketing concentration. You’ll pick your three marketing electives throughout the program. And now you actually end up graduating with two different credentials. You of course have your masters in business administration. You will also be awarded a graduate level certificate in marketing. If you don’t choose a concentration, no worries. You can actually come back after you finish the program. Let’s say you finish the general [inaudible 00:14:15], and now you’re moving towards a marketing career a little down the line. You can come back to our program, pick up that marketing cert. Or that finance cert. A really good way to just, you know, increase the credentials that you have, have another talking point in various interviews, and highlighting those skills that you’ve learned here on the program.

Jake: Another route though, that you do have the option of doing, is just taking a certificate instead of the full masters program. So, I have some students that will come in, maybe they’re just very interested in getting some finance skills. Maybe not all of the leadership skills from the MBA is what they’re looking for. So, they’ll come in, and pick up that 9 credit hour certificate, again, to add that credential to their resume and learn those applicable skills in their career.

Jake: Moving on here, I just want to talk about some of the highlights of our program. There’s some familiar content here, as you can see again, it can be completed in that 22 to 29 month timeframe. So, in that 2 – 2 and 1/2 years mark, depending on those foundational courses we talked about, we do have GMAT waivers available for qualified candidates. I believe, in the next two slides I’m going to be really diving into that. That’s usually a big question for our students. What GMAT waivers are available? So, I’ll touch on that in a second. It is 100% online, as I mentioned. No residency required. A lot of online programs do have some mandatory residency. We’re trying to be a little more flexible here, give you that option with the international trip, but not make it a hard requirement for the program.

Jake: No minimum years of work experience. So, there is the opportunity of becoming in straight out of undergraduate. We do have some people making a pretty quick transition to the MBA trying to really stay in that school mode. But, on average we’re seeing right around 10 years of professional experience coming in. Again though, not a requirement. We like to keep our class sizes small as well. We really want to be able to give you enough, you know, one on one time with your professors, as well as getting to know your network without feeling like you’re overwhelmed in a big sea of online students. So, you’re going to see our classes broken up into 25 to 30 students per class. Just gives you a lot more time to really learn the material with your professor.

Jake: Another interesting approach that we do … Our program is one class at a time, and then plus that capstone at the very end. So, you know, some programs are going to have you take a traditional format, where maybe you’re taking, two or three classes for the full 15 week semester. What we’ve opted to do, is shrink the classes into … To sort of focused blocks. They’re either going to be 5 weeks long or 7 weeks long. For a majority of the program, you end up taking 2 classes first semester, one for the first half of that semester, and one for the second class of that semester. We found it to be a lot easier for our online students who probably are working a full-time job. Probably have some family and extra curricular requirements, to only hyper focus on that one topic at a time, really master that, and then transition it to the next one. So, I think that is something worth highlighting for our students.

Jake: Another thing I want to talk about today, is the tuition. We do have a cost per credit hour of $813. There is a range of either 36 or 52 credits, depending on the foundation courses. So, if you’ve got all of the foundation courses waived, you’re looking at a 36 hours program right around that $29,000 mark. Now, if you didn’t get anything waived, you’re looking right around a $42,000 program for the 52 credits. Again though, we will work with you. My role here as an enrollment advisor, is to help you through that waiver process, as well as the other application requirements.

Jake: So, speaking of admission requirements, it’s a pretty simple application. So, we have our online application that you will fill out. And then additionally we’re going to need official transcripts from all university’s attended. We’ll get a current resume. And try to keep that resume about 2 pages. And then we also have a letter of recommendation. That letter of recommendation, ideally coming from a manager, or somebody who’s overseen you in the work experience, you know, area … Realm. But, that being said, we don’t have any minimum work experience required. Usually, we’re wanting students with a minimum 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale. So, we have made exceptions to the rule, just because you might be under that 3.0. I still urge you to get in contact with an enrollment advisor, whether that be myself or another one of our members on the team, just to go over that application process, see if there is a route for it.

Jake: If you did need to take the GMAT, if none of our GMAT wavier options applied to you, we’re usually recommending right around a 550 on that test. So, that is dead center in terms of score distribution. That’s right around the 50th percentile. We’re just looking for that baseline level of knowledge on both a quantitative and verbal skillset. But speaking of the GMAT, let’s look at some of our GMAT wavier options here. So we have five different main options that can apply to candidates. Again, you’ll work with an enrollment advisor to secure this if you did meet these requirements. So one of them is going to be if you previously earned a graduate or professional degree. Let’s say maybe you have a master’s degree in another field, maybe a PhD or a juris doctorate. As long as you’re meeting the 3.0, there’s a good chance you can get the GMAT waived.

Jake: Next up on the list we do have a GMAT wavier for somebody who can show five years of progressive work experience and paired with a 3.0 GPA in their undergraduate degree. That’s probably the most popular one that we see students utilizing. What we would to is really dive into that resume and look for that progressive work experience. See you taking on additional responsibilities and growing in your career. That’s really what we want to see, that growth in your career.

Jake: Third on the list though you’ll see here a STEM degree in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics, with a 3.0 GPA or higher. That is another way to get the GMAT waived. It’s a pretty popular option as well. There can be a little bit of ambiguity as to what a STEM degree is. So if you have any questions, if it’s not a very obvious one such as a bachelor’s in technology or bachelor’s in engineering, reach out to us. We’d love to help you, we’d love to see if that will be applicable to your scenario.

Jake: Another one though is if you’re coming from a background in business but you have a business degree from an AACSB accredited institution, just like ourselves, and you maintained that 3.0 GPA or higher. That would not require any work experience. Same for the STEM degree, one I just talked about, those can be applied immediately after graduating from your degree. It is worthy to note though, check the accreditation from your degree. If you have business degree, see if it has that AACSB accreditation. That’s what were looking for on that GMAT wavier. And then the last one is going to be if you are under a 3.0 GPA, you can potentially get it waived with 10 years of progressive work experience and a 2.79 GPA or higher. So, anywhere in that 2.79 to 2.99 realm can qualify you for that GMAT wavier. So those are the main options that we’re seeing students utilize.

Jake: Now as far as student support goes, throughout the program, we do really want to stress for our students that you always will have a layer of support here. Starting right off the bat as you’re interested in the program, you have access to enrollment advisors. Myself and my team members here, we work with you throughout the admissions process. Try to really make it as easy as possible. Work with you to gather those documents and put together the strongest profile based off of your background. And also determine if the program is a good fit. And then moving on, we have student support advisors. These are really going to be your main line throughout the program. So, after you get admitted into the program, you would then be handed off to a student support advisor. These people work with you on everything from scheduling your classes, to getting your books, to getting you acclimated with the learning system that we use, and just really making you feel confident going through the program. We want to have people who are admitted who are going to graduate. We need to invest in that support behind it.

Jake: You’ll also have access to technical support. We have a team here, the Crimson Help Desk, they are excellent, very quick to answer questions. I call them just about once a week to go over different potential technology problems that I’m having or with other students. So, a very, very good team to help any issues with technology. And then again, like I mentioned before, we keep those class sizes small. We keep the gear ratio at that 25 to 30 students per instructor. That allows us to have more face time with you guys, answer more questions and answer them more diligently. And then within the program you have section instructors. So you have your lead faculty member and then within that class it’s broken up into various sections. So you not only have access to your professor, you also have your section instructor to go to for question, to go to for help and support throughout the class.

Jake: And then, moving onto the international field study, I believe Chelsea, you got this one.

Chelsea: Yeah, thanks Jake. So, the international field study trip is, as you can see, that once in a lifetime experience. It’s usually about seven to 10 days and it’s a faculty-lead trip. Usually an international business professor will lead those trips. I know this year the students are going to Finland and Estonia. 22 students are actually going on this trip this year, which is great. It’s actually more than ever before. The trip is really a great chance to connect with other students and gives you a chance to connect with a faculty member in person. But I think the biggest benefit is that international exposure to the companies in a different cultural setting. Any international experience is beneficial in business today. It’s certainly attractive to employers. When you go on the trip, the way it’s set up, it varies depending on where you go, but usually there’s going to be two company visits a day. To all different types of businesses. So, technology, marketing, PR, finance, hospitality, anything that is relevant.

Chelsea: And then there’ll also be some other stuff, like tours and cultural activities. I know for this years trip, students will be doing a cultural cooking class, which a lot of students are definitely looking forward to. I know Andrea went on the trip last year, so she’ll probably be able to tell you about her experience as a student on the international field study trip, which is a great way to lead into our next slide.

Chelsea: I think about, the day in the life of the student. I know students want to know what to expect. So Andrea, can you go through what a typical week might look like, how you balance everything, and also can you talk a little bit about your experience on last year’s trip?

Andrea: Oh, sure! I’ll start with the study abroad trip from last year. On that last slide, I’m the one not looking at the camera, I’m looking at Brett because he’s probably making a funny joke. I found the study abroad trip to be so incredibly impactful. In general I love to travel. I love to go to different countries, I love to experience different things but nothing compares to what I experienced on the study abroad trip. I really understood Chile’s economy, first of all, and what major industries and resources, as well as the challenges of the country. And that gave me a completely different experience. And really diving into those businesses, going to the local university where we took classes, meeting local people, going on a cultural experience then as well, it gave me a completely different understanding of what was going on within the country, and then those challenges that the country had.

Andrea: I enjoyed it so much that I did sign up for the Finland, Estonia trip this summer and I got five of the students from last year, we all decided to sign up together because we had such a wonderful time together. And honestly it was one of the best networking times that I’ve had in the MBA program, mostly because you get to spend a whole week with these people, get to understand what their challenges are, why they signed up for the program, what they’re looking to do. And we’ve, for the last year, I’ve had multiple classes with the same people and gotten to know them very well.

Andrea: So, going into the day in the life. Each week is about 10 to 15 hours a week of class work. That’s anywhere, sometimes you’re reading Harvard Business Review articles, sometimes you’re reading your textbooks. There’s normally a couple lectures per week. Mine’s typically been on Monday, Thursday. You’ve got a main instructor and then TAs who, the TAs primarily help you with whatever homework is going to happen that week. They help really deep dive into any additional questions you have. And it’s also kind of optional. So, if you need the support, great, if you don’t, great.

Andrea: So, when I was taking a finance class, I definitely needed the extra support, so I definitely attended all my TA’s office hours. But for other classes in areas that I’m more familiar like marketing, I was able to just review the articles, go to the main class, and then that would be good. The other thing is, because it’s all online, because it’s on Blackboard and recorded, if I couldn’t make something one week. Say I had something after work, say I had something personal, say I just wanted to go to yoga that day, I could take the class the next day or anytime that week and just stay caught up. So it’s very flexible in my opinion. I still find it very flexible. Sometimes I feel the need to go to a session and sometimes I can just watch the session depending on the class.

Andrea: The other thing, I think it was mentioned before, the classes are typically just seven weeks long so, if you really struggle with a class the good news is you only have seven weeks in it. Me in finance was definitely a struggle for example but I learned a ton in that class. And, if you really love a class then it is only seven weeks long. So, in some cases I was really hoping my class would go longer, I got so energized, it brought so much energy into my work at Microsoft just going through some of these classes. And another thing, I feel like the content in the classes has been applicable to my daily job.

Andrea: So, being able to … I work with non-profits and granting, specifically around computer science education. But going through the marketing classes, we were going though our rebranding exercise and a storytelling exercise. I found that content directly applicable. Going through the finance and accounting classes. I mean, I have to look at financial statements and understand how these non-profits are working and in some cases that’s just looking at their annual finances. And really being able to apply that content that I’m learning and add additional value to Microsoft Philanthropies has been just so wonderful and so applicable. I feel like it’s brought more energy into my work life, which is great.

Andrea: We also have a number of group projects that happen throughout the variety of courses. And I do find remote teamwork really pretty flexible. You’re able to use, we use Slack a lot, based on the team that I’m working in. Slack or the discussion boards on Blackboard. Sometimes there are conference calls but it really depends on the team. If your team can just use Slack, sometimes that’s preferable. If your team wants to o a weekly call, I’ve done that with some of my teams too. The nice thing about the teamwork is, everyone is very motivated. People who come to this MBA program come with a purpose and come with a passion. And so I’ve felt that every team I’ve been in, I’ve felt like I’ve had committed team members, I’ve felt like we’ve all contributed to our final products.

Andrea: And I’m currently going through the capstone program series of three courses right now, which has just been an enlightening experience for me on really the deep, putting together a business plan and collaborating together. It is 100% remote and my team is a very strong team, but I felt like every team that I’ve been on has been very strong. We are working on a wine brand that donates back to education. So it’s a social entrepreneur company and we’re all very excited about it. So it’s been a really, pretty cool process.

Andrea: There’s been a couple times where I needed to take some time because I had more work travel or more personal commitments. I mean, most people who are in this program have pets, partners, and kids. And so I felt like I could work with my instructor or work with my student advisor to find the right time and the right flexibility within the schedule to make that work for me. Right now I’m just taking one course at a time. In the summer I’ll have two courses at a time but I felt like, when I needed a little bit less I could go down to one. If I wanted to do a little but more I could increase. So, it’s been very flexible, I would say, in a way that maybe I didn’t really anticipate how flexible it’s been. I feel like I should have done this ten years ago. So, I’m very happy to be going through the program now and happy to answer any questions you guys have along the way. But I plan to graduate in the December [inaudible 00:34:10] with a General MBA. So, thanks for having me.

Jake: Awesome, Andrea. Thanks so much for sharing that. You gave a really good overview of sort of, what you’ve seen throughout the program, what the benefits that you’ve had, and the flexibility in utilizing that. So, no, I appreciate that. At this time though, we’re going to open up some questions about the program. I had a few people submit so far, so if you do have anything, you know, that you’d like to get answered, hear more about, just go ahead and utilize that Q and A tool at the bottom right of your screen. But yeah, starting off some of the questions that we’ve seen, I know people are always going to be asking about funding. So, I do have a question here about, are there any scholarship or financial aid opportunities? Quick answer is yes. We see a lot of different funding options that people are utilizing to pay for the MBA. Financial aid is available to those who apply and qualify. At the graduate level, it’s not need based, it’s going to be in the form of student loans. It’s a pretty quick process though, most of my students who are going through that, say that they’re done in about 30 minutes, to apply for financial aid.

Jake: Scholarships though, are also out there. So, we have a few different resources that your enrollment advisor would recommend to utilize. You have … WSU has their own scholarship page. They also have a general scholarship. But, I do recommend applying for as many of those as possible. At the graduate level, they are pretty competitive, and usually going to be a little lower in quantity as far as the amount of funding. So, I wouldn’t bank on it as being the primary source, but definitely a good … A good option for you to pursue. And then, look into your work tuition reimbursement, or tuition assistant packages. Often times … The amount of times I’ve spoke with students, they didn’t realize they had tuition reimbursement. It’s pretty big, so check out your h.r. policies. See if there’s anything there. But, now, I’ve got a good question for you, Andrea. What according to you, is the best thing about the program, if you were to pick one? What stands out about WSU’s MBA, that has either surprised you, or really been, been a big benefit to you Andrea?

Andrea: I would say, the networking community have been … You know I picked WSU because of the reputation. But, I feel like what I’m going through, and leaving the program with is really a … Besides all the knowledge and the foundation, what I feel like is great, is the networking community of people that I’m going through the program with. Because you’re going … A paid class over class, basically, with a cohort of people. You are going through a year and a half to two years of content, getting to know people in your classes and often working with them on projects. So, being able to network, being able to have, you know, other students you rely on, get to know them, and work through [inaudible 00:37:23] and problems together has been surprising and great.

Jake: That’s excellent. Thank you for sharing about that. I thing networking is always going to be a big reason to pursue an MBA. That can also be a big concern for people who are considering campus versus online. So, we try to combat that. It’s good to see that you’ve had some pretty positive reception, it sounds like. So, no I appreciate that Andrea.

Jake: Now another question I just got was … What the deadlines for the fall 2019 term are. So, you can always have a rule of thumb that about 4 weeks before classes start, is going to be the deadline. So classes are starting back up here August 19th. And our deadline for that, would be 4 weeks before that. Right around July 15th. So, I would highly recommend you know, getting in touch with enrollment advisor. Usually the process takes about 1-2 weeks to complete and application, and then we would submit it to the admissions committee. From there, about another 1-2 weeks before we hear back. So, a month from now we could have you with a decision if you were to start pretty quick. So, a nice turn around time there, definitely not out of the realm of possibility to apply for that August 19th start date.

Jake: Another good one for you, Andrea. Sorry I’m passing them all off to you. If everyone has their own schedule to view, lectures. How is teamwork managed? I’m assuming that you’re mainly asking about, sort of, how you are going through those group projects together in that remote environment? I know you had mentioned fleck, is that right Andrea?

Andrea: Yeah, there’s a couple of different ways that we’ve managed teamwork. Sometimes we have managed it just on Flack, which is a chat based program. And … Use online documents to be able to collaborate. So, at the beginning of a class, we’ll say, “All right you’re assigned to this week, this week and this week.” And then, maybe all go in for week one, two and three. You know, use an online document, submit what I’m going to submit, and then have everyone kind of check my work. In other cases, we have had phone calls. Sometimes Saturday mornings have worked, Saturday afternoons. Sometimes Thursday evenings … Have worked. So, it just depends on the group and the style of the group, and how you best communicate. But, I’ve had complete classes with excellent work managed completely through online communication, on chats, when people have time, and then I’ve had once a week phone calls too.

Jake: Excellent. Thank you for that. I appreciate that. Another question that we have here is, Why would we choose the MBA program over the executive MBA? And that’s really a bigger question. I would urge you to get in touch with an admissions representative to find what program is going to be the best fit for you. They both have sort of their target audience and their curriculum is tailored towards that way. But, so, it’s something I would recommend really sitting down and having that conversation. See if one of them lines up with your career goals, and where you’re looking to go.

Jake: Perfect. Just scrolling here through the other questions … So I’ve go one. Can you define these semesters? How many are there in a year, and duration? Yeah, so we are on the semester system. So, each year you’ll have three semesters. There’s going to be a Fall, a Spring, and then a Summer semester. And then within each semester, we break it up a little bit more. So, we’re talking about that one class at a time approach. Most of your classes are going to be seven weeks long. Most of the time your semesters are cut into a, Fall one and Fall two. Or Summer one and Summer two. So, that’s how we break it up. You do not have to just start in the Fall term, I know I saw another question there. You can start in multiple different start dates. So, you can start in, Fall, Spring, Summer. And then, with in there, you can hop in midway through the semester. For instance, potentially a Fall two start date. Let’s say August was a little earlier, and you prefer a September/October timeframe, we could potentially have a start date that lines up well with you. Again, urge you to get in touch with an enrollment advisor to talk logistics, and see what we can do.

Jake: All right. Other questions here. If you live in the Pacific Northwest area, is there a way to connect with people in the same area, possibly in the same program? So, a ton of our students are coming from that Pacific Northwest area. It’s not all of them of course. We have people across the states, across the globe actually. But, a red … A heat map we’re going to have the most people in the Pacific Northwest. Right around Seattle, is a really good spot. So, there definitely are ways to connect. You know, you’re going to be in those live sessions. So, you’re going to be connecting organically there. There’s also various networking groups that you could be joining. You know, connecting with your classmates of LinkedIn. So, we have had plenty of students who do want that in face interaction, and are going to sort of organize that yourself with the other candidates in the program. I hope that answers that question.

Andrea: I’ll just …

Jake: Andrea, do you have any exposure there?

Andrea: Yeah. I’ll just add they … Normally there are a few events that happen. So, like, the founders game, or there’s a wine night event. Or there’s like a little cruise around Lake Union. So, it’s nice to get to go to those, and, you know, meet people from a peram. And let people know who are in your class, like, “Hey I’m going to this.” And it’s nice to meet people in person. So, I found those to be great ways too.

Jake: Awesome. Thank you Andrea. Then I see another question here about tuition. Is there resident and nonresident tuition? Or is it all the same? Chelsea, do you have anything to add on that?

Chelsea: Yeah. We actually don’t have any kind of residency requirement since it is 100% online. So, it doesn’t matter if you live in the state of Washington or what state or where you are. The tuition is going to be the same.

Jake: Awesome. Thank you. Another question here. Does WSU accept transfer credits? Yes we do. There’s really two different main ways to look at transfer credits. We have those foundational classes I had mentioned. So, we can potentially be transferring previous coursework to waive our foundation classes. That’s going to be the seven classes at the very beginning of the program. Additionally, if you already started and MBA, if you started it at an AACSB accredited program, you can potentially bring in up to 6 credits. Those would transfer in as elective coursework. So, a few different ways to transfer stuff into the program.

Jake: I also see a question about acceptance rate. I don’t have a perfect answer for this one, but I can say it’s probably pretty high. And that’s going to be, large in part, due to what my role here is as an enrollment advisor. So, you know, we’re helping to work with you through the application, we would assist in that process. So, for the most part, people who go through the full application process are going … Probably going to be a pretty strong candidate. Because they have some good insight from an advisor throughout the process. I don’t have a hard number, but I would say it’s pretty up there … I would guess. And that’s not because we’re not competitive with people we’re admitting into the program, it’s just because we’re pretty clear and sort of filter out people from going through the whole process if they’re not going to be the right fit.

Jake: All right … Sorry here. Just looking for some other questions that I’ve yet to answer. I know somebody asked, If we kept a start in the Fall? I already mentioned that one. Can be … Can start multiple different start dates throughout the year. Then there’s … I’m also seeing some unique scenario type questions. Ones that are pretty in depth, based off of your background. For simplicity sake, I really think that would be best in a one on one scenario with an enrollment advisor. So, you’ll find there is some student resources you can find at the bottom left of your screen. I would recommend scheduling an appointment with an enrollment advisor, that will really be able to sit down and appropriately answer some of those specific scenarios based off of your guy’s background.

Jake: What does carousel counseling refer to? So I think in this, carousel counseling, I think you’re meaning the carousel system of our program. So I hopped back a slide. You can see this carousel scheduling. And what that really means, is that once course at a time approach. So, we have certain classes that are offered throughout the year, and it allows us to only have one class at a time. That’s what the carousel model really means there. And again, that’s for carousel scheduling, not counseling.

Jake: Chelsea, are you seeing any other questions that I’ve let slip through the cracks? Anything that I can jump on?

Chelsea: Let’s see, I saw … Oh there’s one question, how much does the international field study trip cost? Well … And I can answer that, if that’s okay, Jake.

Jake: Oh absolutely.

Chelsea: Okay. Yeah, so it’s variable depending on where you go. I know there’s usually a … like a package when you actually get to the location. That includes some of the meals, the hotel, and then some of the touristy activities, the guided activities. This year I think it’s about $2500 a person. And then, you … I guess you get your own … You pay for your own flight. And Andrea, I don’t know if you have anymore information into that, but that’s how I understand that, that works.

Andrea: Yeah, I want to say, last year to Chile, it was a little bit less than that. And this year to Finland and Estonia, it’s around $3000. In addition to that, you do pay for your own flights. And if you want to buy anything else while you’re there, like gifts or anything like that. You have to take a course, along with the class. And it’s normally a course that is already part of a program, and you would be taking anyway. So, the way the field study works is, two weeks of that seven week class, there’s group of students that are actually doing the international trip, and then there’s seven weeks total for the class. So, once you return home, you normally have a couple more weeks of class work to do. Last year, we had to find a business opportunity for the country of Chile. And then work in our virtual team with one student who went on the international study, and five students who did not go, and basically advise them on what that business opportunity is. So, that was little bit more than just the cost, but … but around … I want to say it was somewhere between 2 and 3,000 depending on the country, the cost of the flight and then, the class cost, which you’ll be already taking the class.

Jake: Awesome. Thanks Chelsea and Andrea. I appreciate that. Got another question here. Somebodies asking, How many hours are they allowed to work at their job while taking classes? I’m assuming, just seeing like how much of an impact school has had on working full time. So, quick answer to that, a majority of our students are working full-time. Somewhere in the 40-50 hour range, I would say, is pretty average. And we’ve tried to really create that flexibility around the program, to not impede on work. Andrea, would you say you’ve been able to maintain a standard workload at Microsoft, as you’ve been going through the program?

Andrea: Yes. Absolutely. A standard workload is a little bit more here. But yes … Yup I have. So, at least 40 hours a week of work. You know, Yes. And I travel for work as well. So, I’ve been able to, you know, keep up, mainly US domestic flights and travel here. So, yeah. It hasn’t … Because of the flexibility of the lectures, where you can watch them after, the flexibility of the content. You normally only have one item due per week. And so you have a deadline of either Saturday or Sunday. So you have the whole week to complete it.

Jake: Awesome. Thank you very much. Seeing another question here, we are getting a little bit towards the end of our question section. I’ll still be answering some of the remainder ones. Again, if I don’t get any of the … Answer some of your questions, we’ll be reaching out and make sure to answer to your specific scenarios. Another one. Is the international studied going to both, Finland and Estonia, or do you choose one or the other? So you will be going to both of them. There will be multiple locations that you go to with this one trip. So, it’s not one or the other, it’s going to be sort of a multifaceted, international trip.

Jake: Let’s see here. Oh, here’s a really good one. I currently go to CSU global, and there is a ton of writing. How writing intensive is this program? So, we really are trying to focus on a lot more practical skills. So, you will see a lot of quantitative stuff, especially in some of those finance classes that you’ll be in. There will be some writing. Andrea can you expand on some of the class … The assignments you work on? Specifically the ones that are involved with some writing. And just give me your insight there.

Andrea: Yeah. I would say there … Every week, we have to write a couple discussion posts. Which are a couple of paragraphs. And then as you go through some of the classes, you’re going to have to write longer business plans, feasibility analysis. You know, marketing kind of case study responses. 3-4 pages maybe per case study, which you get you know, a case study a week in some classes. So, it hasn’t seemed unmanageable or specifically a lot. But, most of the courses where you end up with like, a 20 page paper, you’ve actually worked on that paper over the entire 7 weeks. So, you build a section every week, you get comments back on your section and then by the end of the class, you have your entire feasibility study, for example. So, it feels like it’s a good progression. But not a ton.

Jake: Right. So, it’s broken up nicely. But yeah, definitely going to see some writing in the program, that’s going to be important for us. Now, another question we’re seeing. What is the graduation rate for students who are completing the program in 24-29 months? So, we do have a high graduation rate. I think a lot of that is from the support we’re giving our students through the program, the relevance of the content, and then also the flexibility of the program. So, graduation rates going to be pretty high. We’re seeing right around 80% of our students coming into our program, are going to be wrapping up within the allotted time frame.

Jake: Now it is important to note, if you are taking breaks throughout the program, you have up to 6 years to complete the degree. So, there are students who will take a little time to be completing it. Whether they need flexibility or they just got to put the program on hold. So, it can be completed in as few as 22-29 months, but you have up to 6 years to fully wrap all your requirements up.

Jake: Here’s another one. During the graduate program, are the usual holiday breaks and school breaks … Really good question. Want to know what breaks you have throughout the program. So, you will often times be seeing breaks. Often times, you know, since you’re doing one class at a time, you’ll have your first class for the first half of the semester. A lot of times you’ll have about a week break before entering the second half of the semester. And then between full semesters, especially when we’re looking at Fall to Spring, you get a pretty big chunk of time off there for the holidays. So, you have about a month going from mid-December to mid-January. Andrea, what have you thought of the breaks so far? Do you feel like it is … You do have a decent amount of time off of the program?

Andrea: Yeah. I felt pretty good about it. I mean even … Monday was Memorial day here in the U.S. So, it was nice to see that there weren’t any assignments due over the weekend. So, we all got to … Not do any homework last week. Although, we have homework this week. But yeah, I felt like whether it’s holidays or whether it’s like a few breaks, and I’ve actually taken, you know, some 7 weeks off because I needed more time for work. Or, you know, I think my first year I needed, you know, time in August off because I was moving. So, So I felt like it’s been pretty flexible, and I felt like I haven’t been overwhelmed with any of the classes. And that I’ve had time off.

Jake: Excellent. Yeah, now I’m seeing another question here. What does a perfect applicant look like? With regards to years of work experience, academic background. That’s not a super easy one to answer. I think there’s a ton of perfect applicants. It’s really going to depend on, what does the perfect applicant with your background look like. So, we don’t have a hard years of work experience requirement by any means. So, it’s really going to be sort of balancing out that application with either a GMAT, with work experience, with strong academic background. We just want to see that students are going to be successful. So, working with your enrollment advisor, they will, you know, give you some site to see what the best way to be framing your argument is. You know, show the best strengths that you have from your work experience and that Academic background. But yeah, I would definitely recommend getting in touch with an admissions advisor.

Jake: All right. So I am … We’re getting to the end of our question and answer section. The questions that have not been answered thus far, we will be reaching out individually, trying to address those, either giving you a call or shooting you a quick email with those answers. But again, get in touch with an enrollment advisor if this is something you want to consider seriously. If you want to apply, we are more than happy to help you out, and start a great program with us. But thank you for your time. Oh yeah, and also we have a military webinar, I think I had briefly mentioned earlier. I want to highlight that again. So, that will be coming up here. You can see that in the student support … Or the student resources section. If you have military specific questions, if you’re coming from a military background and want to see … And hear Matt Beers perspective a little bit more, we will definitely be diving in there. So, you can sign up in that section.

Jake: Again, I really appreciate your time. It’s been a pleasure. Looking forward to connecting with some of you on a one on one environment, and going over your background. And again the … July 22nd is the application deadline for our August 19th class start date. But yeah, thank you everybody.

Chelsea: Thanks everybody.