UCLA: Social Good, Sustainability, and Globalization

Posted on March 13, 2008 | Filed in Admissions, MBA

Global Consulting Opportunities

In a recent video interview with Business Week Online, UCLA Anderson School of Business Dean Judy Olian discusses some of the schools many new and developing programs. Running through these programs are themes we have seen developing in many top-tier MBA programs, and which may be of interest to anyone considering business school. These themes reflect the need of the business world to recognize social and environmental sustainability, as well as the global nature of business.

Anderson’s part-time program, currently the number 1 ranked program of its kind, has introduced a global consulting requirement called the “Global Access Program” that has had far reaching effects on the school. The school wants all of its students to have a consulting experience that usually spans 6 months. Students must work with a company, located in a number of countries and continents including New Zealand, Africa, Finland, and India. Through data collection, the student must help the company solve a problem which may include branding, acquisition, or another market related issue.

This program reflects the global nature of business as well as the effects of globalization on business.

Dean Olian believes that their location in Los Angeles places them in a position well suited to meet the demands of globalization: They have access to US markets, as well as Latin America and the Pacific Rim.

Leadership and Sustainability

UCLA is also expanding its focus on issues of leadership and sustainability. The school, in partnership with the Institute of the Environment, has an interdisciplinary program, where students must develop business models that are socially and environmentally sustainable. This program is designed to address issues such as “how to address the problem of transportation in Los Angeles in a business viable way.” This program, and other similar issues of social entrepreneurship represent the students’ desire to apply their management skills to social and environmental problems in a way that produces some kind of social good. Studies show that some 15% of Anderson grads are going into non-profit work. We, Manhattan Review, hold the same belief that the skill set of an MBA is welcome and useful in any sector.

Anderson is also active in non-degree programs that promote leadership skills in marginalized communities. They have leadership programs specifically designed for women, African Americans, Hispanic leaders, gay and lesbian leaders, as well a program for the disabled that addresses the opportunities for leadership for the disabled.

The New Face of Business School

The changes in Anderson’s part- and full-time MBA programs reflect and represent the ever-changing face of business and business education. How can students be prepared to meet the challenges of globalization, and the challenges of sustainable business models? Programs like those at UCLA are designed to give business students the tools to address such issues. UCLA Anderson is a good choice for any prospective MBA looking to get involved in social and environmental sustainability and social entrepreneurship. Here are some things to remember about UCLA Anderson:

  • Their Global Access Consulting Program
  • Non-Degree Leadership Programs
  • Focus on developing both socially and environmentally sustainable business models
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