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Family Business Center

Academic Programs

Learn to Balance Business and Family

The Family Business Center offers for-credit classes, which you can take while earning a BA or MBA at St. Thomas. These courses are designed for students who will become family business owners, work in their family business, or provide services to family businesses, such as accounting or financial advice. The purpose of the courses is to provide a solid foundation for owning, governing and leading a family business.

In our academic programs, learn to assess strengths and challenges. Discover new ways to manage family and business interactions, and become a more strategic problem solver and planner. To help you and your family get the most out of these courses, parents and other significant family members are invited to participate in class assignments.


Phone Number
(651) 962-4560

Core Courses

Family Business Governance

Undergraduate ENTR 349/Graduate ENTR705
4 credits

Gain important skills to increase your family’s ability respond to challenges, plan for multiple generations of ownership and carry out a positive succession. Exercises, assessments, classroom discussion and between-class meetings help you build a strong foundation for family business governance, including:

  • Conflict resolution
  • Mission, vision and values
  • Employment policies
  • Family councils and meetings
Prerequisite: junior standing for undergraduate students

Entering Family Business

Undergraduate ENTR449/ Graduate ENTR714
4 credits

Examine the current strategy to enter family business:

  • Identify your family’s strengths
  • Analyze your business concept
  • Communicate opportunities to your family and business
  • Work with family members, peers and expert faculty to identify, improve and determine your family’s future business strategy
Prerequisites: Undergraduates: senior standing; Graduates: MBA Core

“Every aspect of the course was excellent. This course helped foster discussions with the family that should have occurred long ago.”