CONWAY, SC (WMBF) – The MBA program at Coastal Carolina University has a 100 percent job-placement rate for the 2015 May graduating class. Every student had a job within three months of graduating. The success is attracting more new students and attention to the program.
The school is currently ranked at the top of a list of 14 programs that have the best job-placement records among graduates. The ranking is coming from U.S. News and World Report.
The MBA program takes one year to complete at CCU, which makes it very popular for prospective students. Students learn the ins and outs of business, marketing, management, and much more. In the process, students are networking and searching for internships that could lead to future careers. The university is looking to connect more local businesses with students. School leaders want to highlight the level of skill available with local students, so business owners have the opportunity to hire locally.
There are 100 students enrolled right now. According to program leaders, half of those students already have jobs but are looking for a management promotion. While the others are current students working to launch their careers.
Now, the program's goal is to eliminate the wait time and make sure all students land their jobs before graduating.
"It's really seamless," said Arlise McKinney, the Director of Graduate Programs & Executive Education at CCU. "While I'm learning it, let me think about how to apply it. And the more we can kind of shape their thinking like that, the more we can get them planning for a career and a job from day one starting the program."
In three years, the goal is to triple enrollment numbers to 300 students. That's why leaders are changing their strategy to improve the program. CCU is dedicating more career service resources to students to improve job placement.
"We're getting them to do more resume prep," said McKinney. "To do the mock interviews, to do the internships, and pushing them a lot more."
McKinney said what sets this MBA program apart is that it's seamless. As you're learning, you're networking and planning for your career at the same time. That's something Debbie Swann, a current students, is taking advantage of.
"I am thoroughly enjoying the class and the challenge that the classes afford," said Swann.
It's always been on Swann's bucket list to get her MBA. She said she vacationed her with her husband for the past 11 years, when one day she saw a sign along Highway 544 advertising for CCU. As she was deciding where to get her MBA, one of her criteria was the success rate of its graduates. CCU's high job-placement rate was very attractive. And he's taking full advantage of the opportunities in the program. Swann is already networking for her next career in Chicago as a brand manager.
"I know this degree will afford me a broad range of opportunities. Because this program is broad and I love that," said Swann.
To broaden the MBA program's reach, leaders are planning to launch more online and more hybrid classes. The goal is to have a fully-online MBA degree available by Fall 2017.
As a whole, 84 percent of CCU grads have jobs within six months of graduating.