Program Director of the Masters in Management program, Mary Theresa Taglang sits at her desk on Thursday, Sept. 3, 2015.The purpose of the program is for students to build a core business education on the foundation of a liberal arts or science degree. (Aminat Ologunebi/B&W Photo)

Non-business students break barriers with M2 program

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Students in the M2 program, or Master of Science in Management, began their 10-month journey into the professional business world Aug. 3.

Georgette Chapman Phillips, the dean of Lehigh’s College of Business and Economics, created M2 — a master’s degree program for graduate students — to help non-business majors pursue business-related careers. Phillips gathered professors who specialize in teaching statistical analysis, economics, regulatory environment, finance, management information systems and marketing for the program.

Mary Theresa Taglang, the program’s director, said the curriculum for M2 is “heavily populated with guest speakers, networking events, interview preparation and professional development workshops.”

She said the goal of the program is for students to find jobs. After meeting M2 students at their orientation, Taglang described the students as possessing impressive assets, such as analytical and research-oriented skills.

“Their skills fit across a wide range of jobs in the business field,” Taglang said. “Combining these skills with what they will learn in the program will expand their job offerings.”

To achieve M2’s ultimate goal, Taglang has organized events that she believes will help unlock her students’ commercial potentials. During an upcoming a trip to Philadelphia on Sept. 18, students will visit the advisory service at PricewaterhouseCoopers to develop these skills. There are also plans for a trip to the United Nations building in New York, and an optional international business trip during winter break.

Taglang said that the ideal candidate for M2 is someone who “has not had much exposure to the business world but has the necessary interest, maturity, experience and passion.”

The program has already accepted 20 students.

Michael Tarantino, the director of Graduate Recruitment and Admissions, said that he looks for students who are “not only academically talented, well-rounded, and involved in clubs and internships, but also individuals who can bring something different to a group.”

Since M2 is a cohort program, Tarantino has put together students he believes will work well together.

“It’s very interesting to see the growth of a group you brought together,” Tarantino said. “They are a bright group with individuals who are supportive, engaged and undeniably nice.”

Chelsea Hann, the marketing and communications specialist for the Graduate Programs Office, said she is excited to watch the students learn.

“I look forward to seeing where they go,” Hann said. “Students should use this fifth year to figure out what field they want to go into and really think about where this master’s degree could take them.”

Tarantino highly recommends that Lehigh graduate students consider applying for the program.

“Any student benefits from a program like this,” Tarantino said. “It is fit for any field and adds polish to their skill set.”

Details on how to register for information sessions are available on Lehigh’s College of Business and Economics website.

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