College sees record numbers in graduate program enrollment

The 2019-2020 MBA cohort visit industry
​executives at Accenture.

This spring, the graduate programs office at the Ryan College of Business has experienced its highest enrollment numbers on record. Today, graduate numbers sit at 765 students, a 23% increase over last spring, and approximately 15% increase from fall to spring.

“At the close of summer 2020 we anticipate being above our historic academic year enrollment, which was 1,708 in year 2010–2011,” explained Ben Dearman, assistant dean of master's programs for the Ryan College of Business.

The college will need just 276 students to enroll this summer and surpass its record year--and given last summer’s enrollment of 501 students, this seems like a safe mark to hit.

“In general we are seeing growth in all our programs. The Department of Information Technology and Decision Sciences (ITDS), in particular, has seen immense growth,” said Dearman.

ITDS programs, such as business analytics, have played a large role in these new numbers. In spring 2018, 59 master’s students joined the program, while in spring 2020, that number more than doubled to 130.

Newly designated STEM degrees have been a driving force in this recruitment. ITDS changed its Master’s Degree in Business Analytics to a STEM discipline and recently created a STEM-based MBA. The Master’s Degree in Finance has also reported modest growth since its STEM designation announcement last year.

Another factor for this upwards trend in enrollment can be attributed to the full-time cohort MBA that is not only enabling students to finish their degree in less time, but is consistently bringing corporate visibility to the college.

“Of course, these increases in enrollment have indisputably been a college-wide effort and could not have happened without the support of the college’s faculty, chairs and staff,” said Dearman.