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Professional MBA program climbs in US News and World Report’s rankings

The Professional MBA (PMBA) program at DU’s Daniels College of Business was ranked No. 59 out of 166 part-time MBA programs in U.S.News & World Report’s 2011 grad school rankings, which were announced on March 15.

The ranking reflects an upward stride for the program, which was ranked No. 70 in 2010 among a smaller pool of programs.

“First, [the improved ranking] reflects the growing quality and relevance of our degree program,” says George Simon, academic director for the PMBA program.

“Secondly, it’s an acknowledgment that the key areas of academic focus — ethics, sustainability and leadership — best prepare our graduates to effectively compete in a global economy where it matters most. Thus, it speaks volumes regarding the value proposition of our PMBA program in general.”

The part-time MBA program rankings are part of the magazine’s “Best Business Schools” list. Results are calculated from surveys administered to directors of other part-time MBA programs and business school deans.

In the survey, program directors and deans rank part-time MBA programs’ overall academic quality using a scale of 1–5. They are asked to consider certain criteria in their assessment, including the quality of the curriculum, faculty and alumni.

“The U.S. News ranking attests to everything we have heard from students, employers and recruiters,” says Daniels Dean Christine Riordan. “We focus on experiential education and rigorous academics, combined with cutting-edge relevant corporate partnerships. This gives our PMBA students who work while they attend school what they need to succeed in an uncertain global market.”

DU’s PMBA program was formed in fall 2008 based on input from faculty, hiring managers, alumni, current students and prospective students. The program replaced the former part-time MBA program, says Katie Stanek, program and process coordinator for Daniels’ Institute for Leadership and Organizational Performance, which oversees the PMBA and Executive MBA programs.

The PMBA program is designed for professionals who are early in their career, with 2–9 years of professional work experience, whereas the school’s Executive MBA program is designed for more senior-level executives, Simon says.

BusinessWeek magazine also ranked the PMBA program No. 53 in its rankings of part-time MBA programs in the nation in 2009.

For more information, visit the PMBA page on the Daniels College of Business website.

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