At Manhattanville, Students Find Success at the Vanguard of a New Graduate Degree Trend

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Graduate students seek Master of Science programs for accelerated, flexible coursework.

Capitalizing on Manhattanville College’s School of Graduate and Professional Studies (GPS) curricula and a growing national trend, graduate students in metro New York and beyond are pursuing Master of Science (MS) degrees for a competitive advantage – and earning them at an accelerated pace through custom schedules for working professionals.

When Ray Murphy – a metro New York-based financial service professional with JPMorgan Chase and Citibank on his résumé – sought to galvanize his career with an advanced degree, Manhattanville was the clear choice. The college’s proximity to Manhattan and his current work at MasterCard was ideal, he said, and an MS in Finance dovetailed nicely with his professional schedule through evening and weekend classes. Plus, the added focus of an MS program provided a leg-up on the competition.

“There are so many MBAs available, they have become diluted in the marketplace,” Murphy said. “The MS degree was my preference because of the new perspectives it offers.”

Murphy’s insight matches a nationwide trend as students capitalize on MS degrees as more affordable, less time-intensive routes to success. The Wall Street Journal reports MBA applications at top schools have seen considerable decreases in past years, with some top-ranked MBA programs experiencing double-digit percentage decline in applications.

Perhaps the most lucrative outcome of his degree and the lasting trend, Murphy noted, was the swift career and compensation growth that followed. “It was more than just a sound financial choice – my salary increased exponentially,” he said. Murphy is now an undergraduate adjunct professor at Manhattanville, as well.

In a sluggish economy with fierce career competition, Paul Zagaroli agrees that the proper degree and education are invaluable. "What I value most about the MS program is how it is designed to fit into my busy work schedule," Zagaroli, a 2013 graduate of the Finance program said. "Evening and weekend classes were truly the only options for me while working full time at an investment bank."

Zagaroli currently works at UBS Investment Bank.

About The School of Graduate and Professional Studies at Manhattanville College:
For two decades, The School of Graduate and Professional Studies has helped prepare today’s professionals for tomorrow’s business. Instructors are seasoned experts holding senior positions at major companies such as Morgan Stanley, Major League Baseball, Pitney Bowes, Verizon, ABC Sports, and Associated Press.

Originally established as Adult and Continuing Education, GPS evolved in 1993 with the launch of the Masters of Science degree in Organizational Management and Human Resources Development. Today, the school offers six Master’s degrees, including, Business Leadership, Finance, Human Resource Management and Organizational Effectiveness, International Management, Marketing Communication Management and Sport Business Management, which are complemented by Advanced Certificates in Business Leadership, Finance, Human Resource Management, and Marketing Communication Management as well as three accelerated Bachelor’s degree programs for adult learners. It is also home to the Education and Research Center for Managing Risk.

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