Creative Path to an MBA


For all the artists, writers, fashionistas, interior designers, and other creatives out there, The University of Alabama offers a variety of exciting undergraduate majors that may be of interest. In the fourth installment of this ongoing series, The Culverhouse College of Business at The University of Alabama discusses the CREATE Path to the MBA, which allows students enrolled in certain creative majors to earn a Master’s of Business Administration degree with just one additional year of coursework.


Depending on your career goals, it can make good sense to get an MBA. People with an MBA learn how to communicate in a business setting, grow their collaborative and leadership skills,
and gain industry-related experience and knowledge. Ben Tarkoff, a communication studies student who is currently enrolled in the CREATE program, said, “I was amazed by how many doors this program opened for me in terms of how far I could take the skills I already had and new ones I wasn’t even aware of until I joined.”


The CREATE Path to the MBA is closely integrated with Culverhouse’s STEM Path to the MBA program, which allows students in scientific and engineering undergraduate majors to earn an MBA in a year. Each semester, a student enrolls in a business honors course—topics include marketing, accounting, or operations management. The graduate-level MBA coursework starts between a student’s junior and senior years, and features online classes that facilitate study abroad opportunities, internships, or co-op experiences. After a student earns their undergraduate degree, they take several more online classes through the summer in preparation for a year’s worth of in-person MBA coursework, after which the student earns their MBA.


When it comes to getting that first job after graduation, an MBA can give you a major leg up. Allie Burton, who is majoring in advertising, said, “The CREATE Path to the MBA is a unique opportunity for me to combine my creative field with business material. It makes me a more well-rounded and diverse applicant, and that will help me stand out when looking for future jobs.” Rob Morgan, professor of marketing at Culverhouse and director of both the CREATE and STEM Path to the MBA programs, said, “As a result of earning a business and creative degree, students have much broader career opportunities. Furthermore, they increase their value to the organizations they work for through their command of business knowledge and ability to form and lead teams.”

Eligible disciplines for the CREATE Path to the MBA at The University of Alabama include:

  • Advertising
  • Apparel and Textiles
  • Art Studio
  • Dance
  • English
  • Interior Design
  • Music
  • Public Relations
  • Theatre


Students apply to the CREATE Path to the MBA after being admitted to both The University of Alabama and the Honors College. Applications are open until the seats in the freshman class are full, at which point students are eligible to be placed on the waiting list. It is better to apply for the CREATE Path to the MBA earlier rather than later to secure a spot in the freshman class.

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