New MBA concentration offered for graduate students

By Yijing Shen, Contributing Writer
The Gary E. West College of Business at West Liberty University will offer a new Master of Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting in August 2018. 

The new MBA Accounting program meets the requirements of a completed undergraduate degree regardless of major and a series of prescribed courses including a no credit 4-week orientation course, GBUS 525 – Social Responsibility and Business Ethics respectively starting in January, May and August. 
WLU started MBA Management program in 2014 and the first graduate students attended the graduation ceremony in December of 2017
The MBA Accounting program is 30-credit hours and completely online, which aims to fulfill the required 150 credit hours for Accounting major students to sit for the CPA (Certified Public Accountant) exam.
“When Accounting major students graduate the undergraduate degree, they have 123 credit hours in Accounting, and they have all the required accounting classes they need to sit for the CPA, but they won’t be awarded the actual license until they get 150 credit hours. A lot students do a second major in order to fulfill the remaining 27 credit hour,” said Dr. Gregory Chase, MBA program director. “We figured that what we will do is a MBA Accounting program, so instead of just doing a second undergraduate major, they would actually get a graduate MBA.”
While helping students to pass the CPA exam, the MBA Accounting emphasizes the opportunity of being a forensic accountant and getting outside certifications.
“The emphasis before the accounting degree is forensic and fraud accounting. There is a huge shortage in that area, big demand and no supply. We have a relationship with ACFE (Association of Certified Fraud Examiners), and we recognized an educational partnership with them. The purpose of the MBA is to help the students to sit for and pass the CFE (Certified Fraud Examiner) exam,” said Chase. “Another area we were looking at is for existing accounters who want to get additional certifications. They can come and just do the accounting classes. It’s a big plus that anytime you get outside certifications, it just enhances your market building.” 
Chase hopes to have at least 10 to 15 enrollments, and he is planning to start a MBA in health care in 2019. 
Michael Turrentine, Dean of the College of Business, showed confidence about the recruitment of the new MBA concentration.
“The business graduate program is benefit to our students who are currently here as a possibility to pass their undergraduate graduation period. It also provides original basis opportunity for students to consider MBA at WLU without having to come to campus, because it’s totally online. In the future, we will have students from even further than the region,” Turrentine said. “For us, it’s a matter of healthy enrollments, also present ourselves as a complete professional business college.”
For more information about the Accounting MBA program, please contact Dr. Gregory Chase at [email protected]
Photo Credit: Media Relations