School Profiles: University of Michigan-Dearborn

As I go here, it seemed a logical place to start. UM-Dearborn is the third-ranked business school in the state of Michigan (after UM-Ann Arbor and Michigan State). The school opened in 1959 and the business school opened a few years later, in part by the grace of Ford Motor Company. It has enjoyed significant growth since; in my four years, the freshman classes have gotten bigger every year. Ford’s world headquarters is just down the street, where it has remained for over 80 years. The property lines of Henry Ford’s estates overlap with those of the campus, providing diverse woodland ecosystems for biology students to study.

The College of Business’s digital marketing program, classes for which have been available for a few years already, is now a subject for a Bachelor’s degree.  Exactly what percentage are attracted by the block “M” on their degrees without the head-crushingly big price tag of the Ann Arbor campus is unclear. Though the university lacks the prestige of its big brother, it maintains solid academic standards and the College of Business has an impressive employment rate for graduates. This is in part through its internship program, which provides students with opportunities in accounting, finance, marketing, information technology, and more.

The school’s Digital Marketing degree only became available in the last year; if you check the school’s Wikipedia page, you see that it doesn’t even mention the major. However, the school is indeed competing nationally with some of the top players in the field, including Rutgers and NYU. It maintains a history of innovation in the digital field, being one of the first universities in the state to offer an online MBA.

A sweeping look at the College of Business. Photo courtesy of UM-Dearborn Reporter. (Side note: this picture appears on the first slide of most of the PowerPoints I see.)

Student life is laid-back, though the paradigm may soon change–the university will be constructing dormitories beginning in 2013. Up to this point, though, the lack of geographical overlap between personal and academic life has resulted in a sort of unspoken rule to emphasize academics. In two years of group projects for marketing classes, I’ve never had a group that didn’t achieve a good grade. Majors in the digital variety are few and far between, but the number is growing.

Obviously if you’re trying to choose a school you should go here, but wait until they build the dormitories. Seriously, it can get kind of dull here sometimes. The top quality of your education will never be in question, though.

A glance at the entrance to the university and the innovative BELL financial data analysis lab. Pictures courtesy of Crain’s Detroit.

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