The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Kenan-Flagler Business School continues to differentiate itself among other popular undergraduate business programs. At UNC, the undergraduate business education is centered around its non-major program with a strong emphasis on global learning.
UNC’s new Inclusive Global Leadership is the business school’s latest push towards a more global education. The Inclusive Global Leadership is a degree requirement where students participate in a variety of activities and programs to develop the global competencies from UNC’s Global Education Model.
The Global Education Model
The Global Education Model, according to UNC’s website, “serves as the road map for all of our degree programs to provide a systematic, comprehensive and transformative global education for every UNC Kenan-Flagler student.” The model is based on four global business competencies:
“UNC Kenan-Flagler graduates can recognize, exemplify, and demonstrate Attitudes—flexibility, openness, respectfulness, resiliency and introspection—that are conducive to positive global business interactions.”
“UNC Kenan-Flagler graduates can identify, associate, and implement reflection, empathy, adaptability, collaboration, and communication Skills in cross-cultural interactions.”
“UNC Kenan-Flagler graduates can identify, explain, and demonstrate business, logistical, intercultural, and self-awareness Knowledge in global contexts.”
Global Business Practices
“UNC Kenan-Flagler graduates can understand, analyze, and apply Business Practices that are specific to at least one academic area based on each student’s selected concentration or focus of study.”
KENAN-FLAGLER’S HOLISTIC CURRICULAR APPROACH
At UNC, business students don’t choose majors, but rather, customize their degrees through “Areas of Emphasis (AOE),” which require a minimum of nine credit hours of elective courses. AOE’s are optional and business majors may choose to add up to two AOE’s in one of the following areas:
- Consulting Entrepreneurship
- Investment Banking
- Investment Management
- Marketing Management & Sales
- Multinational Finance
- Real Estate
According to UNC administrators, AOE’s allow more customization for students and a holistic approach to business education.
“AOEs provide students with recommended curricular and co-curricular activities based on their business interests. For example, a student interested in consulting will take a required Consulting Skills and Frameworks course, choose from a list of applied learning experiences, and then take one final 3.0 credit hour consulting focused elective. They are also guided to join our Consulting Career Club, participate in case competitions, Consulting Career Treks, and various workshops such as a Consulting Bootcamp.”
NEARLY THREE-QUARTERS OF RECENT KENAN-FLAGLER GRADUATES HAD A ‘GLOBAL IMMERSION’
At Kenan-Flagler, 72% of the graduating class of 2017 gradates participated in an immersive global experience. With 291 semester abroad opportunities at UNC, students are encouraged to take part in a global experience.
UNC’s GLOBE program is a partnership between UNC, the Chinese University of Hong Kong, and the Copenhagen Business School. GLOBE is an attempt to “offer a unique, integrated global business curriculum to prepare students as future managers and business leaders.” Students apply to become GLOBE fellows their sophomore year and take part in an 18-month exchange program.
In a P&Q survey of Kenan-Flagler alumni, 67% say they engaged in a “global immersion” trip or project through UNC.
Carly Wolberg, now a Marketing Manager at Amazon, is a Kenan-Flagler alum who studied abroad through the university.
“Global immersion was one of the best experiences and programs offered through Kenan-Flagler,” Wolberg says. “I went to Dubai as part of an elective course and we met with local business leaders and learned about the culture that is driving the growth and innovation in the country. The business school also made it very affordable through various merit scholarships offered.”
EMPHASIS ON EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING
There are a number of applied and experiential learning opportunities available for UNC students. From consulting projects to case competitions, Kenan-Flagler offers experiential learning both in and out the classroom setting.
The STAR (Student Teams Achieving Results) program at UNC is a partnership with a number of Fortune 500 corporations and nonprofit organizations where students can gain real-world business experience. STAR teams of five to six students work under the guidance of professors with significant business and consulting experience to “collaborate with the corporate partner sponsors for ongoing dialogue in a similar manner as a consulting engagement,” according to UNC’s website.
One of the most popular experimental courses at Kenan-Flagler is “Consulting to Entrepreneurial Firms,” a course where student teams partake in consulting projects to assist local startups.
“I participated in an Entrepreneurial Consulting course which gave me hands on experience working with a start up in order to grow their digital footprint,” Kristen Busby, a Kenan-Flagler alum, says. “Working alongside several classmates in my group with the business owner provided valuable experience and insight to behind the scenes at a startup.”
Career outlook for grads
According to a P&Q survey, UNC reported that 97.64% of 2017 grads seeking employment were employed full-time within 90 days of graduation with an average salary of $66,616. Graduates from the class were scattered across the U.S. with majorities accepting positions in the South and Northeast, 48% and 23%, respectively. Graduates working full-time in the Northeast, according to UNC, had the highest average salaries at $75,180. Graduates working full-time in the Western U.S. had the second highest average salaries at $68,125.
Alumni views of Kenan-Flagler are high. According to the P&Q alumni survey, 60% of Kenan-Flagler alums believe their business degree will assist them in climbing to a new socioeconomic status. Some 89% say that their first job after graduating was in their desired industry with 76% saying their first job after graduation was at their desired company.
What alumni say:
“I went to Dubai for a week-long immersion to learn about the manner in which business is conducted in the Middle East. I got to witness the bridges of globalization in a culture that can be very different from the one that where we normally study. I also spent a semester at Copenhagen Business School and became best friends with students from all over the world, who I travel to visit on a regular basis.”
“I studied abroad at CBS- Copenhagen Business School. While the school was mostly Danish, it was also very international. To learn in this environment was a unique experience for me, and I loved how culture was injected into everything- from how people from different cultures like to work together, to stimulating conversations with extremely different ideas.”
“I studied abroad at ESADE Business School outside Barcelona, Spain. As a Business and Spanish double major, this time gave me the opportunity to learn business principles on an international level while also sharpening my Spanish speaking abilities. I took very focused classes on topics such as entrepreneurship, change management and tourism. Attending this private school internationally through the Kenan-Flagler Business program was a cost-effective way to get specialized training and attend events specific to this program and my courses here. I engaged in an International Tourism event and heard from top movers in Spain’s tourism industry and received high-quality web app teaching in my digital entrepreneurship course. This experience opened the doors to the benefit of business experience internationally.”
All quotes are from the Poets&Quants survey of the graduating Class of 2015.
For an in-depth interview with Dean Murray, go here.