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Strategic Plan Overview: Strategic Plan Initiative #1

DEPARTMENT(S): 
October 31, 2022

At the WPI Business School, we are excited about our strategic plan and as such want to share an overview of the strategic initiatives that comprise our plan. This month, we will look at Strategic Initiative #1: Growing the Business School's Professional Masters Programs.

COVID and a downturn in international student recruitment impacted business schools across the country. However, as we emerge from these global impacts, we are positioning aggressively for growth. One primary strategy that we are piloting is Differentiated Pricing of our graduate programs where the cost of Business School programs is reduced from the standard WPI tuition. Specifically, our MBA is priced at $45,000, or $1,250 per credit hour, while our specialty Master’s Degrees, MSBA, MSIT, MSIUX, and MSOSCA, are priced at $34,650, or $1,050 per credit hour. This pricing model enables us to be more competitive in the marketplace, making our distinctive programs more attractive. In addition, we are sharpening the messaging to our target audience for greater resonance. As "The Business School for Engineers, Scientist, and Changemakers," we demonstrate our value proposition to technologists who want to learn business competencies from scholars and practitioners who are also technologists.

With regard to recruitment and admissions, we are actively recruiting internationally, working with partners to conduct market research, develop digital media campaigns to leverage research learnings, and have in-person presence in areas such as India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and the Middle East. Through a partnership between WPI and the Nigerian University of Technology and Management, we are creating a footprint in Nigeria by offering the MS in Business Analytics. This program represents a collaborative effort where the competencies gained through advanced studies in analytics meet a market need in the rapidly growing Nigerian economy. WPI sees this program as a template to expand offerings and realize greater impact in the world.

Domestically, we will continue to attract diverse learners to our programs. To grow our percentage of BIPOC learners, we will award three $20,000 Dean's Diversity Scholarships to new applicants who share how their experience with marginalization has impacted their commitment to diversity. We will also continue to partner with affinity groups such as the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE), the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE), and the PhD Project to increase visibility in our programs. 

We will also increase outreach to our alumni, to our various partners, and to companies who hire our students. This tactic recognizes the need to market our programs to companies who deliver cohorts of learners in addition to marketing directly to individuals. We will partner with WPI’s Academic and Collegiate Engagement and Corporate Relations divisions to reach companies, creating tailored programs for their cohorts of students.

We have also enhanced our programs by implementing a core-specialty-capstone model, which better addresses the academic needs and interests of today's learners. Such an approach allows students to synthesize learnings across their program, realizing greater academic outcomes and learner success. 

By realizing this strategic initiative, the WPI Business School is positioned for greater financial sustainability and strength. Moreover, we can deliver on our mission to develop adaptive leaders who create sustainable solutions, deliver globally responsible impact, and conduct transformative research at the intersection of business, technology, and people.