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Graduate Group in Management of Innovation, Sustainability, and Technology

Curriculum

Master of Management Program (Catalog Description) 

The Master of Management (MM) 12-month program offered by MIST faculty will provide students with fluency in managerial thinking and practice, enhancing their readiness to fit and succeed in an organization within the private or public sector. The MM curriculum is designed for recent graduates looking to complement their undergraduate degree with real-world management knowledge and skills and draws on concepts from business, engineering, natural and social sciences, computing, and data analytics. Particular focus is paid to management problems associated with the San Joaquin Valley. In consultation with regional employers, this program is designed around relevant case studies and integrative team projects that foster valuable discussion, oral presentation, professional writing, and leadership skills for solving complex problems about sustaining our environment, society, and economy. Along these lines, the curriculum will highlight the challenges of finding solutions that simultaneously balance corporate profitability and stewardship of natural resources.

Prospective applicants must hold the equivalent of a bachelor’s degree from a four-year accredited college or university.

Program Requirements

The principal requirements for a MM degree are completion with a letter grade of B or better of: a) nine semester courses involving teamwork and experiential learning and b) one capstone course that requires students to work over the summer in an internship, permanent position, entrepreneurial, venture, or sponsored project. To apply for the MIST MM program, applicants must follow the application procedure of the UC Merced Graduate Division.

Program Learning Outcomes

  • Apply traditional functional concepts and theories from business, including marketing, management, operations, strategy, accounting, and finance, in complex organizational, managerial, and technical situations.
  • Identify and use appropriate analytical, quantitative, and data-oriented techniques to evaluate case studies for strategic planning and decision-making in complex organizational, managerial, and technical situations.
  • Communicate effectively with experts and non-experts in business, community, and government settings, preparing and delivering clear, concise, persuasive, and professional presentations.
  • Apply principles and practices of effective conflict and diversity management in and outside of a team context in order to lead change in both legacy organizations and new startups.
  • Understand the structure of organizations and apply ethical and legal requirements to global management activities in complex organizational situations, including applications for policy and risk management.
  • Synthesize theory and practice from a wide array of disciplines, leveraging real-world team settings to design innovative solutions that tackle strategic, organizational, and technical challenges. Gain practical experience coupling natural and environmental systems with private and public sector resource management.

Course Descriptions

MIST 201: Leadership, Organizations, and Communications. Using management and organizational behavior theories, students will identify and evaluate examples of functional and dysfunctional leadership in workplace settings. Students will also learn and apply strategies for effectively managing employees and other human resources through the use of organizational case materials, leadership assessments, and team exercises involving both oral and written communications. Class and group discussions will focus on improving individual and team performance in work organizations with sensitivity to cross-cultural differences.

 

MIST 202: Managerial Finance and Accounting. Introduces students to fundamental concepts and principles of financial capital, and how to apply them in the budgeting and accounting of organizational projects and entrepreneurial ventures. Concepts include the time value of money, business valuation, capital sources and structure, equity distribution and dilution, as well as financial aspects of the management of small business and entrepreneurial firms (sole proprietorships, partnership, small private corporations).

 

MIST 203: Quantitative Tools for ManagementThis course will prepare students for qualitative, quantitative and data-oriented reasoning for complex decisionmaking scenarios. In qualitative scenarios, when quantitative information and data are sparse, reasoning draws on careful thought experiments. When the problem has a measurable component that nevertheless lacks data, insights and direction can still be obtained from back-of-the-napkin estimations that also require an assessment of error propagation. In the digital era, the increasing availability of data for decision-making clarifies some aspects of problem solving, but there are still statistical pitfalls that should be addressed and overcome using careful analysis design. To this end, this class will largely focus on identifying best practices for collecting, processing, visualizing, and communicating data-driven analysis strategies.

 

MIST 204: Spatial AnalyticsIntroduces methods for acquisition, analysis, and assessment of spatial data. Emphasizes geographic information systems and spatial statistical packages as support tools for problem solving and decision-making in natural resource management, market-based institutions, and non-profit organizations. Students will work in teams to acquire, explore, analyze, and assess spatial information from a given set of management case studies. The course will culminate with a team presentation where students will convey spatial data through visualization techniques and communicate findings.

 

MIST 205: Technology-Enabled ServiceStudents will gain an understanding of how information-based services and systems can be used to meet the needs and challenges of modern organizations. Additionally, students will gain an understanding of how internet-related technologies add value to organizational and business functions, including marketing, management, and more. Students will be asked to use design thinking and management principles to improve strategies, processes, operations, and the decision making in specific cases to better meet customer and other stakeholders’ needs.

 

MIST 206: Entrepreneurship and InnovationProvides graduate-level exposure to key concepts and theories of entrepreneurship and innovation. Using a variety of cases, we will explore the basis of creativity, processes and practices of innovation within new ventures and established enterprises, and the fundamentals of entrepreneurial action and innovative organizational cultures. We will also discuss design thinking, innovation strategy and the alignment of innovative projects to corporate strategy.

 

MIST 207: Project and Operations ManagementIntroduces operations and project management concepts and tools to assist managers in efficient and effective delivery of goods and services. Explores project and program management concepts including critical path, crisis management, human resources, budgeting and planning considerations. Operations management topics explore value creation in both private and public sectors, quality service delivery, supply chain, and techniques for efficient service delivery.

 

MIST 208: Law, Policy, and Risk Management. Utilizes theory and frameworks at the intersection of law and economics, as well as case studies, to train students how to consider law, policy, and risk in the management of corporate, non-profit, and public sectors. Concepts include: the Coase theorem; market failures and policy tools; laws as individual rights and obligations scaled-up to society; policies as prevailing strategies to reconcile social, ecological, and economic tensions; and risks as real or perceived exposure to loss of value for individuals, the environment, or the market.

 

MIST 210: Integrated Capstone ProjectThis course focuses on how to align people, information, and resources effectively to meet the triple bottom line (3BL): value generation, ethical treatment of workers, and environmental sustainability. Students will reflect on and analyze their management of the 3BL in their internship, entrepreneurial venture or professional position. An individual final report and presentation is required.

 

MIST 211: Strategy: Regional and Global Perspectives. This course introduces students to strategic management and marketing in both regional and global contexts. Students will learn frameworks and theories about strategy formulation, competitive advantage, market research, product-market fit, value creation and business model innovation. Students will integrate and apply this knowledge during their participation in programs and field trips involving for-profit and non-profit enterprises.