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The Ross school at the University of Michigan has become the latest top US school to launch a European-style Masters in Management degree. The 10-month postgraduate degree is designed for students who want to add business know-how to a liberal arts, science, or engineering undergraduate degree.

Ross follows in the footsteps of the Kellogg school at Norwestern University, which announced earlier this year that it would launch a pre-experience degree in August this year. The Fuqua school at Duke University in North Carolina has been running a similar programme, its Master of Management Studies, since 2009.

Graduates from the Michigan programme will have a real advantage over other recent graduates, says Ross dean Alison Davis-Blake. “In 10 months’ time they will master core business fundamentals to create a powerful, multidisciplinary combination of skills and knowledge valued in today’s job market.”

Unlike in the US, where the MBA dominates, the Masters in Management degree is the flagship programme of most European business schools, such as HEC and ESCP in France, Esade in Spain, and St Gallen in Switzerland. In the UK, London Business School, which runs one of the top MBA programmes in the world, launched its Masters in Management degree in 2009.

The rapid uptake of these programmes by business schools in the US is partly due to the need for schools to diversify, in order to offset the decline in applications to the traditional two-year MBA programme. This decline is in part due to the high opportunity cost for managers who have to leave their jobs for two years.


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