Contact: Wendel Sloan at 505.562.2253
Reporter: Shane Brown
PORTALES – Eastern New Mexico University's Master of Business Administration (MBA) program is allowing students around eastern New Mexico to earn a master's degree in their hometowns.
The program has been around since the 1970s, usually averaging around 39 students, but recently that number has been rising. The reason is because of a new marketing strategy, according to Dr. Lee Weyant, assistant professor of management and graduate coordinator.
When Dr. Weyant became the MBA coordinator 18 months ago, he decided to refocus on marketing the MBA program. "I wanted to market the program a little more aggressively, especially at the ITV (instructional TV) sites," Dr. Weyant said.
With help from his graduate assistants to coordinate newspaper and radio ads, Dr. Weyant schedules periodic information meetings at the ITV sites in Roswell, Hobbs, Clovis, and Ruidoso. These meetings provided general information about the MBA and emphasized the ENMU MBA is "Closer than you think".
The "closer than you think" idea began when Dr Weyant was asked by Dr. Gerry Huybregts, dean of the ENMU College of Business, to visit Carlsbad in mid-November. "I visited with people in Carlsbad about the MBA program. Surprisingly, 10 people showed interest, were eager to start in January," Dr. Weyant said.
With the support of the Graduate School and Communication Services, a week-end MBA program was designed for the Carlsbad students. "It was real fast, in about five weeks we had 15 students signed up; we had great support in Carlsbad," Dr. Weyant said.
The Carlsbad MBA program started Jan. 17 with classes meeting Friday night from 6-9:30 p.m. and Saturday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Under this format, students will meet four times throughout the semester.
The Carlsbad community has been very receptive to the ENMU MBA program. "I've been invited to meet with the employees of one of Carlsbad's largest employers on March 13," noted Dr. Weyant.
He added that the MBA program wants to continue getting the word out. "We have opportunities to add students to this program; we just have to continue to be aggressive," said Dr. Weyant.
Dr Weyant believes that being aggressive is providing students with a graduate educational opportunity that meets their needs. With a primary market focus toward the adult who is working full-time and wants to improve their skills, the ENMU MBA provides "excellent quality, closer than you think," according to Dr. Weyant. This quality comes from not being afraid to innovate and look for ways to deliver the program for the flexibility of the student, and having a caring faculty with lots of corporate experience," Dr. Weyant said.
"Not only do we have a great program with great faculty, we also are affordable compared to our competitors," Dr. Weyant said. To show the impact of the ENMU MBA program to the local economy, Dr Weyant explained, "We have alumni that own a business and take what they've learned from this program and are applying it to their business."
Dr. Weyant said that the program is focusing on having the region understand that an affordable MBA is "closer than you think".
For more information, contact Dr. Weyant at 505.562.2352.
'Closer Than You Think' (to photographer) – (L-R) Carolyn Edwards and Jennifer Poyer of Communication Services have a high-level meeting with graduate students Rose Clark-Hitt and Lynn Kofford to discuss promoting the MBA program in eastern New Mexico cities. (photos on this page by Shane Brown)