Wednesday, March 29 , 2017, 3:19 am | Fair 52º


UCSB Prepares to Offer First Business Degree Through Technology Management Program

Construction is slated to begin in August on an accompanying state-of-the-art facility

Those hoping to enroll in the first class to earn a business degree from UC Santa Barbara should be smart, born leaders who have worked outside college for at least two years.

An interest in engineering and science couldn’t hurt, and the ideal candidate would have that “extra something” to win over faculty teaching the new degree.

The new professional master’s in technology management (MTM) won’t be offered until fall 2015, so suitors still have time to beef up their resumes.

Active recruiting has already begun, however, according to Cassity Ming, public relations manager for UCSB’s Technology Management Program.

The college’s popular TMP program — known for its annual New Venture Competition allowing students to present business venture ideas and compete for cash prizes — can hire new business faculty and offer the degree after being elevated to full academic program status in January 2013.

TMP, which was created in its initial form in 1998, has been working on the logistics since then, adding an MBA-like degree to programming that already aims to foster entrepreneurialism and management training.

Students from all sorts of disciplines currently earn certificates for participating in TMP, not actual degrees.

Students on the degree tract will endure nine months of intensive curriculum geared toward those who already have some technical experience in the workforce, and UCSB graduates will not receive special consideration.

“It’s not meant to make you a successful worker bee,” said Giulia Brofferio, TMP’s business officer.

The university is currently soliciting construction bids to build an accompanying state-of-the-art facility within Phelps Hall, near existing TMP offices.

Construction is slated to begin in August, with expected completion six months later.

That “executive learning facility” will contain a large theater-like classroom space for learning, breakout rooms for group work and a welcoming lobby surrounded by windows, Ming said.

“They’re going to go through as a cohort,” she said. “They have to be 100 percent committed to be here.”

The remodel will transform the workspace built in the 1960s into a hub of technology and equipment used by 20 to 30 students in the first year.

Six faculty will be hired over a five-year period to teach and research how to best commercialize tech-savvy ideas. The university has already tapped professors Kyle Lewis and Paul Leonardi, who will serve as MTM director.

Ming said the number of students could eventually grow to 60, and an outside marketing firm was already working to target the best candidates.

“How quickly depends how our first five years go,” Brofferio said.

Noozhawk staff writer Gina Potthoff can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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