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Business college named in Princeton review

By Matt Gunn
On October 22, 2009

The Princeton Review put its stamp of approval on UT’s College of Business Administration MBA program, calling it “one of the best in the Midwest,” in the newest edition of “The Best 301 Business Schools.”

The list, which was published two weeks ago, specifies UT’s COBA as one that will successfully take business students to the next level of their career.

According to The Princeton Review, “The University of Toledo features affordability and flexibility that help [business students] expand [their] skills and opportunities without interrupting [their] career.”

“Our inclusion in this select group is a seal of quality for our degree programs. It elevates the value of degrees received, leads to increased enrollment of high-quality students, and enhances the qualifications of alumni,” said Senior Associate Dean of the College of Business Administration Anand Kunnathur.

The recognition is not based on specific achievements but rather milestones based on quality attributed to the college, Kunnathur explained.

“The totality of the efforts and the continuity of high quality essentially serving the student and business community have gone in with the recognition,” he said. “When the students sign up for our programs they can assure they are receiving a quality education.”

Kunnathur said COBA has high placement success for undergraduate students.

“Within three months, 80 to 85 percent [of undergrads] are already placed. The placement for anyone seeking employment is nearly 100 percent within a year,” he said.

Michael Mallin, an assistant professor of marketing and international business, said the success rate of students graduating from COBA is only one of the many factors that contributed to the mention of the school in The Princeton Review.

The student to faculty ratio for COBA is 10-to-1, which Mallin said, allows much more attention to be given on an individual basis.

“The students who come here get a great education. Every single faculty member is passionate about teaching their academic discipline,” Mallin said. “Every faculty member is very effective to getting students engaged in real life and business-applicable projects, exercises and applications, so when students apply for jobs all of that comes out.”

The Princeton Review mentions COBA’s engagement of its students, which is designed to “equip future leaders with relevant, real world knowledge about the working of every level of the enterprise.”

Some of COBA’s efforts to engage its students in real world business experience include the REAL Connection program and the Student Managed Portfolio program. The acronym REAL stands for the relevant, engaged, active, leadership and learning experiences that the students will gain from the program.

Mallin said the REAL Connection program is a way to develop personal skills through the development of relevant, practical experience that employers are looking for.

“This hands-on learning can be valued at tens of thousands of dollars to the employer who does not have to focus as much, if any, time in training the newly hired employees,” he said.

UT’s Student Managed Portfolio program gives certain finance students the opportunity to invest $1 million of the UT Foundations $135 million portfolio in the stock market.

Gene Collins, a visiting professor of finance, said the focus of the SMP is teaching students the entire investment process.

“We teach them investment analysis, investment models and stock screening,” Collins said.

Students are required to do a written report and presentation to the foundation’s investment committee twice a year, explaining the reasoning behind their trades.

Though The Princeton Review ties credit to COBA’s programs and engagement, the students in the program have received recognition as well.

COBA students from UT’s Edward H. Schmidt School of Professional Sales won the first place team prize last year at the annual Russ Berrie Institute National Sales Challenge at William Paterson University, for the second consecutive year.

The students have also participated in KeyBank’s Key Foundation MBA Minority Case Competition since it was established in 2005 in association with Ohio State University’s Fisher College of Business.

KeyBank’s Competition has become recognized as one of the nation’s most renowned minority MBA case competitions and allows the students to compete with students from other schools, such as Carnegie Mellon University, Ohio State University, Indiana University, and the University of Colorado, to name a few.

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