UNC Pembroke's MBA program is starting the New Year with a new focus, a new day program and a new director.
MBA Director Carmen Calabrese, who comes to UNCP from an engineering and international business background, is currently developing a day program to attract a different type of student.
"Our evening program is geared towards established professionals who are interested in career growth and development," Dr. Calabrese said. "The day program will concentrate on younger students seeking to continue their college education and who wish to accelerate career growth."
The new day program is a natural development for a relatively new program, said Dr. Eric Dent, Dean of the School of Business.
"The recent growth at UNCP has allowed for a number of exciting new initiatives ranging from pursuit of the highest level of accreditation (AACSB) to possible joint ventures with prominent international universities," Dr. Dent said. "The day-time MBA program means that, for the first time, promising students from this region will not have to leave the area to go to a high-quality, full-time MBA program. This important step is a milestone for the increase in professional work in this region."
The day program is in the planning stages and will debut in the fall semester, 2004. Both programs will gain a new strategic focus.
"Entrepreneurship," Dr. Calabrese said. "We are focusing on the needs of our region. The need here is for small business development."
A veteran educator, Dr. Calabrese's last business stop was leading a start-up project for Nachi-Fujikoshi, Ltd., a Tokyo-based company that manufactured and marketed machine tools, robotics, bearings and cutting tools.
He will begin teaching two courses in entrepreneurship in the spring semester.
"We believe the day program will be a unique product for the region's students," Dr. Calabrese said. "We will also provide research opportunities that may be publishable and will build the student's portfolio for prospective employment."
"Our graduates will gain an understanding of the global economy, especially as it affects the economic forces that impact North Carolina," he said. "We will also focus on entrepreneurial competences."
The MBA program is seeking to build its enrollment to 100 students in three years, or to nearly double the size of the program.
"With a new product and new focus coming on line, we believe this goal is attainable," Dr. Calabrese said. "To accomplish our mission will require us to improve our own entrepreneurial skills, and that is another benefit."