Paving the way to sustainable business education


The University of Miami Patti and Allan Herbert Business School’s nationally and internationally ranked MBA program provides career opportunities in the growing field of sustainable business. Recent graduates or professionals looking to understand key topics in today’s business environment, such as risk management and regulatory compliance, can choose the STEM certified program, recognized as sixth in the nation and 21

st worldwide by Corporate Knights Better World MBA Sustainability Rankings, the only outlet that measures the educational level of students in accredited programs in the developing field.

Challenging the status quo

“Ten years ago, only about 20% of S&P 500 companies reported on their sustainability initiatives. Today, the rate is well over 90%,” says economics professor David Kelly. “Sustainable trade has become deeply important to the business world.”

As the discipline gains ground as a fundamental building block of business enterprise, Miami Herbert faculty foster academic content, experiential projects, and campus initiatives that equip students with workforce skills. works to meet the challenges in a context of increasing environmental, social and economic stress.

“We recognized the opportunity and implemented programs that prepare the next generation of leaders in resilience and response to change,” says Miami Herbert Dean John Quelch. “Both on the programmatic front and on internal management initiatives, such as with our recently LEED-certified buildings, we seized the opportunity.”

Since 2017, under Quelch’s leadership, Miami Herbert has established itself as a leader in sustainable business education, offering the only STEM-certified Master’s in Sustainable Business in the United States. Kelly, who is academic director of the MS in Sustainable Business program, describes the effort as a vision shared by faculty.

“We geared the whole school towards sustainability,” he says. “Students in all programs receive the kind of training that shows exactly how a business benefits from being more sustainable.”

An understanding of key sustainability challenges and opportunities

The shared vision has enabled Kelly and faculty to align the Master of Sustainable Business and MBA programs for the most value for students. All core courses in the MS in Sustainable Business program are available to MBA students as electives. In this way, students can choose from topics such as sustainability accounting, regulatory compliance strategies, sustainable supply chains, business risk management, and the legal and ethical implications of business decisions. . These courses focus on core disciplines such as finance, accounting and marketing from a sustainability perspective. For example, in sustainable finance, students not only learn about traditional financing vehicles, such as bonds and stocks, but also financing vehicles that have sustainability requirements, such as green and blue bonds and private equity. green investment.

The focus goes beyond optional options. On average, a core MBA course has around 15% sustainability content. In Kelly’s managerial economics course, for example, students learn how sustainability improves production efficiency.

“I use an example where students determine how often they should wash an airplane engine, because a clean engine results in better fuel economy and less fuel burn. This not only saves costs, but also improves the company’s sustainability measures,” he explains.

While learning how to run a business in all essential functions, MBA students also learn to think rigorously about sustainability, enabling them to develop a sustainable business perspective that shows how sustainability adds value.

“As sustainability becomes more mainstreamed, business leaders are finding that being sustainable leads to more meaningful returns and healthier businesses,” says economics professor Daniel Hicks. He describes sustainable enterprise as “the frontier of business”, pointing out that by investing in people, communities and natural capital, business leaders realize that “this way of doing business is more in tune with how society wants businesses to contribute to social development”. and environmental well-being.

What can you do with an MBA that incorporates business sustainability?

Hicks founded and hosts the annual Miami Herbert Sustainability Director’s Summit and Symposium, which brings together business leaders and professors for discussions that help advance understanding of the field. The Summit allows MBA students to hear directly and engage with leading practitioners, as well as further explore the latest developments and potential career options in sustainable business. These can include consulting roles for companies like Ernst & Young and PWC – two frequent recruiters of Miami MBA graduates – sustainability management positions and roles in government agencies and non-profit organizations .

MBA students also have the possibility of obtaining a double degree by combining the MBA with a Master in Sustainable Business.

“MBA/MS students gain an additional skill set that few competitors have for a job in finance, accounting, or supply chain,” Kelly says. “Many business leaders today want more than the sustainability manager to understand sustainability issues. They want their team members in other areas to understand as well. »

Although students who opt for the master’s degree receive training for a more focused path, all MBA students graduate with the coveted knowledge base in critical aspects of sustainable business, making the Miami MBA a strong indicator resilient future leaders ready to both identify opportunities and lead through crises.

Ready to transform the business world?

For more information on our MBA program, Click here. For more information on our Master in Sustainable Business, Click here.

Already on a Miami Herbert MBA? Start your journey today and apply!

Your future starts here.

Located in the #1 City for Startup Business,

Miami Herbert is a multicultural business center where possibilities exist and where the future is shaped. Gain and maintain a competitive edge with experiential programs that truly go beyond the classroom to equip students with real-world skills. Our 8th-ranked faculty in the world have crafted carefully designed programs to help position graduate students for continued growth and career success. Wherever your future goes, it starts in Miami Herbert.

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