The Master of Engineering Management degree combines the technical knowledge acquired via a systems engineering degree program with business skills gleaned from a Master’s in Business Administration (MBA). The ideal result is an engineer who produces technically creative ideas that promote a business’s ultimate bottom line. Technical management, financial engineering, engineering project management, and technical leadership and entrepreneurship are typical topics of study within a Master of Engineering Management degree program.
The career path of individuals pursuing a Master of Engineering Management degree is a rather fast track to executive management depending on the skill and ambition of the individual. The degree is typically pursued by junior engineers or project managers who are seeking a competitive way to set themselves apart from their peers. Engineers who earn the Master of Engineering Management degree have a greater understanding of the economic reasons for a business’s technical decisions. The courses contained within this degree program also teach business communications and negotiation skills; engineers who complete the program are able to effectively communicate their technical solutions to business problems. Project managers who have earned technical undergraduate business degrees also gain engineering skills and an engineering framework for creating solutions to business problems.
Details about the Master of Engineering Management Degree
Earning the Master of Engineering Management degree is a significant time investment depending on the university program chosen. Those students who pursue the degree full time may finish within a year. Working professionals going to school part time may complete the program within three years. Students who do not rush through the coursework typically get the most out of the program, and many times their grades reflect this. Universities offering this type of degree program usually make the course schedule as flexible as possible.
The typical core coursework for those pursuing the Master of Engineering Management degree includes introductory engineering management, engineering accounting, marketing for engineers, finance for engineers, engineering strategic management, and management decision tools. Project management, organizational change management, leadership, and industrial engineering electives are also required. Upon completion of core courses, students have the option to select a concentration area based upon their personal interests. Some typical concentration areas are engineering design, operations management, or project/process management.
Where to Obtain a Master of Engineering Management Degree
Two universities that offer the Master of Engineering Management degree are Northwestern University and Cornell University. Both universities belong to the Master of Engineering Management Programs Consortium.
Northwestern University offers a wider variety of coursework choices combining the standard engineering courses with business courses from their top ranked Kellogg School of Management. Northwestern University’s curriculum seems to have captured the most challenging of MBA courses such as project management and supply chain management for incorporation into its Master of Engineering Management degree program. Northwestern University also has greater course schedule flexibility options for those pursuing the Master of Engineering Management degree part time. A part time student may take as few as a course per quarter. To enter Northwestern University’s Engineering Management program, one must have worked three years in a technical work environment after having earned a technical undergraduate degree.
The Master of Engineering Management degree program offered by Cornell University contains less varied course options, and there are fewer core curriculum courses required to earn the degree than at Northwestern University. Cornell University’s core curriculum courses are project management, engineering management, engineering management methods, and risk analysis. The prerequisite for admission into the Engineering Management degree program is more relaxed at Cornell University than at Northwestern University. Cornell University only requires that a potential participant in the program have taken a semester of probability and statistics to enter its Engineering Management degree program. Cornell University offers less flexible schedule options for completing the Master of Engineering Management degree, and students complete the program within three semesters.
Additional Resource: Top Online Master of Engineering Degree Programs