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Bridget Rissmann and others showing support for the Alzheimer's Association.

MBA With a Graduate Certificate

Getting an MBA was always on Bridget Rissman’s bucket list. She was enjoying a successful marketing career after college but realized an advanced degree could help increase her business lingo. But what she didn’t know was that she’d end up with two graduate credentials, not one.

In today’s evolving job market, building expertise in a specialized area can advance your career. The graduate business certificate programs at St. Thomas are designed as shorter programs of study and can be completed as a stand-alone program or as part of an MBA degree. They’re ideal for individuals seeking to develop new skills to advance or change careers; or those who want to explore a particular area of interest.

Rissman '18 was able to differentiate herself by earning a graduate certificate with the elective courses included in her MBA degree requirements. “I completed a Marketing Communication graduate certificate on top of my MBA in the same amount of time, which was pretty cool,” said Rissman.

While focusing on the core business functions of accounting, finance, and strategic management in her MBA courses, she also developed her expertise in marketing and communication. Courses in branding, reputation and stakeholder management and digital marketing used real-life case studies and hands-on projects to help her combine theory and practice in the classroom. Earning her graduate certificate was an added bonus:

"As a St. Thomas MBA student, it was great adding that specialized credential to my degree."