Florida MBA Programs
International Attraction: Florida's MBA programs have worldwide appeal
MBA degree programs at Florida schools attract students from all over the world who like the diversity at the schools and opportunities to interact with local businesspeople.
Florida State University
Adding an MBA to his Ph.D.
Born and raised in China, with a degree in biology, Zhiqiang Shu, 25, came to the U.S. in 2011 to study molecular genetics in FSU’s doctoral program in molecular biology.
While working on his Ph.D. in cancer research, Shu, described by his professors as a “stellar student,” enrolled in the university’s Jim Moran Institute for Global Entrepreneurship.
With offers from other university programs, he chose FSU “because Florida is a good place to live, the people and professors at FSU were great, and also I was very interested in the cancer research they were doing.”
Shu graduated last year and plans to combine his business studies with his expertise in genetic research.
“I don’t envision myself as a researcher or scientist,” he says. “My broad goal is to apply what I’ve learned through the MBA program to the business industry and perhaps start a company focused on genetic research.”
A native of Bilbao, Spain, 22-year-old Nerea Hernando is in her second semester at Barry, focusing on management. She already holds an undergraduate degree in engineering.
Hernando says she chose Barry for several reasons, including Miami’s vibrant Hispanic community and the university’s commitment to teaching strong principles in business practices.
“Nowadays, it’s not just about making money, but it’s also about ethics and honesty, and those are strong core values at Barry,” Hernando says.
Another factor was the MBA program’s national accreditation by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.
“For me it was important that my MBA degree will be accredited by the AACSB. I tell prospective students that you will be traveling all over the world, and you need an MBA degree that will be recognized all over the world,” Hernando says.
Barry offered Hernando an assistantship that helps defray tuition costs. She works part time in the MBA program office and goes to classes at night. “I help plan seminars, am involved in student recruitment, work with international students coming to Barry, and also I create marketing materials,” she says. “It keeps me very, very busy, but it’s all been a great opportunity for me.”
University of Tampa
Tanzania native Neema Komba, 29, is a prize-winning author and founder of a Tanzania-based company that manufactures eco-friendly soap and skin-care products.
After graduating from Ohiobased Franklin University, Komba brought her entrepreneurial skills and MBA aspirations to the University of Tampa’s Sykes College of Business.
“UT gave me a graduate assistantship, which made the decision to attend their MBA program an easy one,” Komba says.
“I expected a rigorous, challenging and handson program, and so far I am getting that,” she says. “The program is mostly about teamwork. And in this global economy, having the opportunity to work with diverse teams while still a student is an added advantage.”
She recently participated in a leadership summit sponsored by Tampa-based TECO Energy.
“Learning from various business leaders in Tampa definitely adds to my education,” she says.
On track to graduate in December, Komba says she’s eager “to get back to what I love: Entrepreneurship and inspiring positive change among youth in my own country and beyond.”
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