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Everything You Need to Know About the MBA Practicum and Capstone

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Graduating with a Master of Business Administration (MBA) and entering a management position allows you to command high wages, even fresh out of school. But your starting salary depends on many factors, including how prepared you are to enter the business world.

SNU is committed to preparing learners for lucrative and rewarding careers. We believe in graduating students who become exceptional business leaders poised to serve their communities. Our MBA practicum is a key component of this goal. Sometimes called an MBA capstone project, this experiential learning project is fully integrated into your coursework, allowing you to master business management skills as you complete your classes.

When you complete your MBA at SNU, you will be ready to compete for high wages and demanding roles from day one.

What Is a Practicum?

Theory is one thing. Putting it to practice is another. The working world is sometimes messier and less predictable than classroom theories would lead you to believe. That’s why future business leaders must cultivate the skills they need in business well before taking the helm.

A practicum offers fieldwork that allows students to practice the duties they will one day perform in their jobs. An MBA can prepare you for a wide range of careers, from entrepreneurship to a spot in the C-suite. Your practicum is a chance to test out one of these roles and cultivate strategies for managing day-to-day challenges.

The Benefits of an MBA Capstone Project

Today’s businesses face a wide range of challenges and opportunities for growth. Although an MBA can prepare you with business theories and strategies for effective management, no program can equip you with the ability to solve every conceivable business challenge.

This is where an MBA practicum comes in. This is your chance to put theory to practice in a simulated business environment, test out the skills you have learned and master flexible thinking. With this project, you can:

  • Put theory into practice. This helps you understand the real-world implications of the ideas you’ve learned about in school.
  • Build self-confidence. There is no substitute for actually managing a business. A capstone project gives you the chance to do precisely that, but without any of the risks.
  • Test your ideas. SNU’s MBA capstone project uses a simulation to assess how well your theories will work in the real world.
  • Graduate ready to work. Your capstone project helps you master the skills you will need for the rest of your career, preparing you to work from day one.

How SNU’s MBA Practicum Prepares You for a Career

At SNU, we understand how valuable a capstone project can be. We also know that students — especially adult learners — are juggling many responsibilities. Adding a capstone on top of it can feel overwhelming. That’s why we integrate the capstone project into the program, making it a part of your coursework so you can build your project as you accumulate knowledge.

This paced approach mimics the realities of business life, where projects build slowly and steadily and may face setbacks. Employers understand the value of the SNU MBA capstone. They know we challenge students and graduate experts who are ready to work.

Components of SNU’s Capstone Project

SNU’s capstone project has two components: the project itself and the class. The capstone class is three credit hours and the culmination of the program. Your capstone project — like many businesses — begins with a business plan that you will revise and adapt as you move through the project. The business plan is integrated into your classes, so as you learn more information, you can incorporate it into your plan.

During the class, you will complete two full simulations to test the results of your project ideas. You will also complete an individual simulation and a team simulation. In business, both your individual efforts and the team you work with can greatly influence results.

We use Comp-XM (a Capsim product) to simulate the individual project, testing analytical skills and business ideas to see how they might work in the real world. Comp-XM is nationally normed, enabling students to compare their results to students nationwide. We use Capsim, a Capstone simulation program, to simulate team results. This simulation assessment tool draws on real-world data to assess performance and provide meaningful feedback.

Students will also complete a business plan debrief, which allows them to compare their results to their initial goals. With this process, they can assess how realistic their ideas were, how effective they were in practice and how they could improve their business plan. This gives students the benefit of simulated successes and failures without the real-world risk, preparing them for the realities of running a business.

By integrating the capstone project into our SNU MBA curriculum, we afford students the chance to gain valuable business experience without eating into busy schedules or taking on the risk of starting a business. We nurture business acumen and help students weigh how realistic and effective their ideas are in the real world. Graduates tell us the MBA practicum capstone was highly effective at modeling the challenges they experience in their post-MBA careers.

Choosing the Right MBA Program

The MBA program you choose is a predictor of your success. Good schools lead to good jobs. Additionally, your school experience can affect how well you do and whether you finish, especially if you’re an adult learner juggling multiple responsibilities.

Some things to look for in your program include:

  • Flexible scheduling options, including online and night classes, so you can fit school into your routine — not the other way around.
  • Supportive financial aid so that school doesn’t break your budget.
  • Rigorous courses taught by quality instructors.
  • No Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) or Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) requirements for admission.
  • The right accreditation, so you know your transfer credits will go with you if you move to a different school.
  • A commitment to nurturing the whole person and embracing diversity, equity and inclusion.
Not sure which business program is right for you? Compare SNU’s Master of Business Administration, Master of Leadership, and Master of Science in Management in the Program Comparison.

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SNU is growing future leaders through our innovative business programs, including our MBA program and capstone project. We specialize in supporting adult learners to switch careers, start new careers and climb the corporate ladder with a flexible, quality graduate program. Ready to get started? Apply Now.

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