Through this program, you can’t leave without learning one crucial thing about business. Business as a system. In a summarized explanation, it is the interplay of activities that occur in a company’s operations which require big-picture perspectives and integrated decision-making. We are seeking to become holistic critical thinkers This degree of professionalism is what ultimately prepares us for meaningful careers.

A business consists of many aspects. Start with the departments that exist: marketing, sales, human resources, accounting, information technology. Some companies can create even more specific departments to accommodate other goals and values. It makes sense for these departments to communicate with one another, especially when company updates are made.

One simple example can be a clothing company that decides to ensure its products are made from ethical manufacturers. Doing so directly impacts the supply. Marketing and sales are also affected as new strategies of customer relations are needed to make up for the expected increase in cost of goods sold. Perhaps a specialist in sustainable business operations will need to be hired to oversee this new initiative, in which human resources will quickly become relevant. This is the kind of multifaceted thinking that is sought from employers.

A company will undoubtedly have complex issues that require critical thinking, simply because the people that comprise it are complex. As part of our development, we practice our critical thinking ability through our case analyses. We read about a company’s history and problems, and then figure out what the main issue is, as well as the best remedy to implement. It is amazingly divergent from undergraduate courses where we are given a specific problem and expected to provide the predetermined solution. When you work with a business, problems are not always apparent, and critical thinking expects creativity along with competence. As difficult as that is, this program allows those skills to come alive.

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