Local MBA Programs See Increase in Applicants Despite Global Trends

Lynchburg, VA- According to a new world-wide survey, students are not flocking to apply for Masters of Business Administration programs.

Data from the Graduate Management Admission Council shows applications for two-year, full-time MBA programs fell for the fourth year in a row. The survey says the sluggish economy is partly to blame for the decline. But, MBA administrators in the Lynchburg area say it's a much different scene.

Meghan Moss, Andrew Wilfong and Jennifer Thompson all came to Lynchburg College with different dreams. One aspires to be a business teacher, another a lacrosse coach, and one a business connoisseur. They all believe an MBA will help them achieve those dreams.

"Getting an MBA is a good choice no matter what the economy is like," said Moss.

Many say hearing this sealed the deal.

"We saw some trends that jobs now are higher people with MBA more than people with just a Bachelor's Degrees within any business field," said Wilfong.

"We understand or we make them understand the importance of an MBA degree," said Dr. Atul Gupta, director of the MBA program at Lynchburg College.

Gupta shares these trends when he recruits students as undergraduates. He believes the Lynchburg College MBA program is fairly better than most because of this. Being so close to so many big companies doesn't hurt either.

"Locally we get employees from every company in this region, as well as students from out of state," said Dr. Gupta.

Applications at Lynchburg College's MBA programs have stayed steady and across town at Liberty University applications just shot through the roof, increasing by 108% over last year.

"I think an MBA degree makes you more hirable and I think it also makes you better able to critically think through problems and issues that arise," said Thompson.

Lynchburg College also tailors certain MBA programs for big local employers like Babcock and Wilcox. The school is also constantly surveying students to find out what things they want to see improved in the program.

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