STEM Path to the MBA

At no time in history has science, technology, and engineering been more important to the nation's future. Manufacturing, software engineering, computer science, alternative energy, high-tech steel production, infrastructure replacement, health care, and evolving forms of communication will create demand for engineers, technicians, and scientists from a variety of fields, but will also create a substantial demand for professionals in these fields who also possess communication, leadership, decision-making and business-analytical skills.

The STEM path to the MBA focuses on attracting high-quality undergraduate students majoring in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines. The program is an innovative approach to engage students early on as undergraduates and employ nontraditional classroom methods to allow top students to complete the MBA in one additional calendar year. The purpose of the path is to provide high-achieving students with the business knowledge needed to successfully manage high-tech businesses.

STEM Path applicants who hold a minimum high school GPA of 3.5 and a minimum ACT score of 28 will be considered for early admission to the MBA program. During their junior year, students will apply for admission to the Graduate School for the MBA program.

At the end of their junior year, a student is unconditionally admitted into the graduate MBA program if they have achieved a 3.3 overall undergraduate GPA, is completing an undergraduate degree in a STEM discipline, and achieves a score of 600 or better on the GMAT. The GMAT is preferred, but students may choose to take either the GMAT or the GRE. Students with a GPA below 3.3, but equal to or greater than 3.0 will be considered for unconditional admission if their GMAT is 600 or higher.

Click here to proceed to the STEM Path to the MBA Application

 

  • What are the entrance requirements for the program?

    STEM Path to the MBA applicants must hold a minimum high school GPA of 3.5, a minimum ACT score of 28, and plan to major in one of the STEM disciplines, which includes aerospace engineering, civil engineering, metallurgical engineering, construction engineering, electrical engineering, computer science, computer engineering, mechanical engineering, chemical engineering, biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics, nutrition, marine biology, marine science, microbiology, nursing, premed, pre-pharmacy, and pre-dental studies.

  • What are the steps to the application process?

    Applicants must complete the online application which can be found above. Applicants are typically notified within ten days via their crimson email.

  • Is there an automatic admissions process (i.e., if you meet the criteria, are you automatically accepted)?

    Admission to the STEM Path to the MBA is not automatic.

  • What are the typical class sizes? Other demographics? Retention rate?

    For the incoming freshman class of Fall 2015, 300 students were admitted to the STEM Path to the MBA program. Members of the class represented over 30 different U.S. states, with over 75% of the class being residents of states other than Alabama. Roughly 80% of students in this class were planning to major in one of the engineering disciplines.

  • Who teaches the classes?

    STEM Path faculty typically hold both business and STEM degrees themselves. Dr. Morgan, the director of the program, holds undergraduate degrees in biology and pharmacy, as well as an MBA and PhD in business. Prof. Hill, professor for the majority of students in the MBA Class of 2018, holds undergraduate degrees in microbiology and chemical engineering, as well as an MBA with a concentration in entrepreneurship. These qualifications are typical of STEM Path faculty.

  • Are students allowed to Study Abroad if they are accepted into the program?

    Yes, each year several STEM Path to the MBA students engage in study abroad opportunities. They remain involved with their STEM Business Honors course cohort through remote conferencing technologies and typically are able to work with teams of other STEM Path students on class projects while abroad.

  • Are students allowed to co-op if they are accepted into the program?

    Yes and, actually, co-op education is encouraged for STEM Path to the MBA students. Students typically make arrangements ahead of time with their STEM Path instructor to remain engaged with their STEM cohort in projects and class meetings using remote conferencing technologies.

  • What material do students learn in class?

    Students in the STEM Path to the MBA program take a series of eight STEM Business Honors courses, with the first course in the series taken during the fall semester of their freshman year and then one more course in the sequence for the next seven semesters. Students in the STEM Business Honors courses are exposed to each of the various business disciplines, including economics, finance, accounting, marketing, leadership, and operations management. They also work in randomly assigned teams every five weeks to complete a project that involves developing a business model for a new product or new business, around assigned themes. Past themes have included the internet of things, NASA technologies, innovation for aging, reverse innovation, and smart campus.

  • How would a prospective student benefit from completing the STEM program?

    Not only will students gain a general knowledge of business to prepare them for their MBA year, but they will also gain experience working in teams and giving presentations. They will be given many different opportunities to network with speakers and companies brought in to speak to the students. Students are also given the opportunity to participate in several trips throughout the semester to visit different technology-based companies throughout the region.

  • What is the typical workload that is added to students who participate in the program?

    Students will take a 1.5 hour STEM Business Honors course each semester of their undergraduate studies with students on the STEM Path to the MBA to increase their exposure to technology. Students meet for class once a week. They will go over a few chapters of material each semester with homework associated with each chapter. Students also have 2 seven-week projects in which they will create a business model for a new business or product, following the business model canvas approach. As a final project each semester, students will work together to complete a case study based upon the semester’s Business Honors topic.

  • Do you accept transfer students?

    Transfer students may be accepted on a case-by-case basis. Please contact Dr. Rob Morgan for more information.

  • Can the fifth year of the National Merit Finalist Scholarship be applied to the MBA year?

    Beginning with the MBA Class of 2019, yes. For earlier classes it is possible, but those decisions are made on a case by case basis.

  • What are the costs associated with the fifth year of the program?

    Students will be required to pay tuition for two summer semesters and a full year of MBA courses. There are a limited number of scholarships available.

  • When do students start real MBA classes?

    Students will apply for entrance into the MBA program near the end of the fall semester of their junior year. Upon entrance to the program, they will begin taking online MBA classes the summer after their junior year. These three summer MBA courses are taught online, to allow students to also engage in internships, co-ops, and study abroad opportunities.

  • How is the graduate curriculum structured?

    Upon entrance into the graduate program, the summer after their junior year the students will take three online MBA courses. The following summer they will take three additional online MBA courses, and then 30 credit hours of MBA coursework, on campus, split between the following fall and spring semesters.

  • What are the requirements for the MBA program?

    Students are expected to have a minimum 3.3 overall undergraduate GPA and 600 GMAT score to be unconditionally admitted. The GMAT is preferred, but students may choose to take either the GMAT or the GRE. Students with a GPA below 3.3, but equal to or greater than 3.0 will be considered for unconditional admission if their GMAT is 600 or higher.

  • For students in the STEM Path to the MBA program, what is the process for applying to the MBA program during the junior year?

    Students should take the GMAT or GRE and submit their completed application by November 15th of their junior year. They will need to include three letters of recommendation (including one from their STEM professor), a statement of purpose, and a resume. Once their application has been received, the last step is a digital entrance interview. See the traditional MBA admissions page for additional details. The process is very similar.

  • What is the format of the interview?

    Applicants will interview digitally, and they should prepare a 1-2 minute personal introduction as well as a 3-5 minute presentation on a topic of their choice. They will then be asked several typical interview questions and given a chance to ask questions about the MBA program.