Learning and leading: an educational resource guide for executives

By Jon Hurdle
Special to Delaware Business Times

Colleges and business groups in Delaware offer a range of degrees, certificates and courses at graduate level to professionals seeking to build their knowledge of business-related skills. These range from finance and accounting to health-care management and the latest information technology. Here is a selection:

UD’s Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economic

At UD’s Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics, professionals can choose from MBA and masters courses as well as dual graduate degrees and doctoral programs, all in a range of business-related disciplines.

MBA candidates can choose from majors including entrepreneurial studies, finance and health-care management, and elect from a range of specialist areas such as accounting, business analytics and information technology.

Masters programs include accounting, economics and international business. The master’s degree in finance covers financial forecasting, cost of capital and other tools designed to maximize shareholder value. The full-time master’s degree in finance usually takes 18 months to complete, while an accelerated program for students who already have a bachelor’s in finance takes about a year.

The college also offers a master’s degree in information systems and technology management, which is designed to help early- and mid-career IT professionals to use technology to achieve business goals.
Students already in a graduate degree program at UD can also take a part-time course leading to a certificate in entrepreneurship and technology innovation.

In addition, the college offers dual graduate degrees that combine MBAs with master’s degrees in subjects such as electrical and computer engineering, and information systems and technology management.
Ph.D. programs include economics, economic education and financial services analytics.

UD undergraduates considering a graduate degree in a business discipline can apply in their junior year for the school’s accelerated degree program which allows them, if provisionally accepted, to take graduate courses in their senior year, waiving some undergraduate requirements.

Lerner Women’s Leadership Forum

For women seeking career advancement with their current organizations, or who want to take their own businesses to the next level, the forum offers courses to build professional skills, clarify leadership vision and develop a network of contacts.

The program, which will next be held over three days in October, covers issues including practicing good workplace politics, communicating more effectively and building a network with other professional women.’

Wilmington University

WilmU offers master’s and doctoral degrees in business administration as well as master’s degrees in accounting and management.

The MBA degrees cover disciplines including business technology, accounting and environmental sustainability, and can be taken in a traditional classroom setting, online or in combination. WilmU’s classroom courses include semester courses over 15 weeks, block courses over seven weeks and modular courses on weekends.

In online courses, students use the university’s Blackboard online tool to complete readings and assignments, and communicate with faculty and other students via email, chat rooms, and discussion boards. Online course duration can be seven or 14 weeks.

The doctoral program is available 100 percent online, or combining online and classroom sessions, and is designed to be completed in 2½ years.

WilmU also offers certificate programs that provide skills in specific areas such as finance, information technology or human resources while awarding degree credits.

The finance certificate, for example, requires entrants to choose four out of six available courses including investments, portfolio theory, and corporate taxation. Another certificate in health-care administration includes courses on health policy and economics, and marketing in the sector.

Goldey-Beacom College 

In Wilmington, Goldey-Beacom offers part-time MBAs in two years, with courses starting every eight weeks. The school offers MBA majors in finance and taxation with concentrations in areas including marketing, IT and international business management.

Graduate students can take master’s degrees in finance, taxation and management. Goldey-Beacom is also inviting the first applicants for its new doctorate in business administration for working professionals who already have an MBA or other business degree and want to acquire higher-level skills.

Technology Forum Of Delaware

Outside the academic world, the Technology Forum of Delaware, a nonprofit, provides networking opportunities and seminars on current issues to enable business leaders to keep up with current trends. The group’s annual Technologies to Watch Showcase, for example, attracted exhibitors including Geoswap and Drone Workforce to its latest session in June, and highlighted technologies including wearable therapeutic technology. In February, the group hosted a seminar on augmented reality.

Emerging Enterprise Center

For startups, the Emerging Enterprise Center at the New Castle County Chamber of Commerce offers workshops and seminars on essential business skills, advice from a network of experienced business people, and an incubator that provides mentoring and affordable amenities for entrepreneurs.

The center’s business skills courses focus on four key areas: sales and marketing; products and customers; business organization and business operations. Upcoming classes include effective branding; successful speaking and using IT to improve efficiency.

The chamber’s business resources unit offers networking opportunities for startups seeking advice on areas like writing a business model, landing government contracts and securing loans.

Startups can also use the chamber’s business incubator, which provides 5,300 square feet of space on the Wilmington riverfront where early-stage companies can use co-working space, access WiFi and benefit from
mentoring by experienced business leaders.

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