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Jul 21, 2014 11:20 AM EDT

Widener University in Pennsylvania to Launch MBA Online Program


Widener University in Pennsylvania will launch an online MBA program beginning this fall, school officials announced.

Students will have the option to pursue a general business track or a concentration in health care or business process management in the new program. The flexible program can be completed in as few as one and a half calendar years.

"With the immense growth potential of the health care and business process sectors, we felt it was an important time to expand access to our competitive MBA programs," Penelope Sue Greenberg, Associate Provost for Graduate Studies at Widener University, said in a statement. "Our recognition as a top university for civic engagement doesn't end on our campus. We look for ways to engage professionals nationwide to prepare them with the specialized skills needed for areas of high opportunity, so improving access to our competitive programs made perfect sense."

Widener's MBA is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). In addition, the Health Care Management concentration is one of only a few programs of its kind nationwide to also be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation Healthcare Management Education (CAHME).

Students who decide to pursue the concentration in health care management without having previous work experience in the industry will be required to complete an internship locally.

The healthcare concentration will prepare students for careers in health care for careers in health care, such as healthcare administrator or director of health information management; the business process innovation will help students land jobs in the business field, such as process analyst or process owner.

Healthcare is one of the fastest growing industries, projected to employ more people in the next 10 years than any other industry, with a high demand for skilled management professionals. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, business process and operations research analysts are projected to see a higher than average job growth with an expected an increase of 27 percent through the year 2022.

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