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SFSU Public Affairs Press Release

Published by the Public Affairs Office at San Francisco State University, Diag Center.

Contact: William Morris
phone: (415) 405-3606 ,

Number of incoming San Francisco StateMBA students up 40% over last year

Economic downturn leads to growth in graduate business programs at SFSU's College of Business and women dominate the class for the first time ever.

SAN FRANCISCO, CA, October 29, 2001 - The number of students entering San Francisco State University's Masters of Business Administration and Masters of Science in Business Administration programs rose by 40 percent this year. The College of Business reports that the increase is primarily due to a big jump in the number of domestic students.

"While our overall numbers are up since the peak of the dot-com boom last fall, the real growth this year is in the area of domestic students, confirming that we are beginning to see a counter-cyclical movement with respect to the national economy," said Art Kuhn, director of graduate studies for the College of Business.

"It's a well-known trend that people go back to school when the economy is down. Now that we have our final numbers, it's obvious that the College of Business is holding to the conventional wisdom in a convincing manner," he said.

The College of Business enrolled 251 new graduate students this semester compared with 179 in fall 2000, a jump of 40 percent. The number of domestic students rose 75 percent-from 67 last fall to 116 in this fall. While SFSU remains an attractive option for international students, the College experienced a more normal growth pattern in that category. The number of international students rose from 112 last fall to 135 this fall, a jump of 20 percent.

In addition, for the first time ever at SFSU, female students significantly outnumber male students. While the percentage has hovered around 50/50 for the last couple of years, this year women make up 55 percent of the incoming class.

"This current number is significant because in most MBA programs women only make up 30 percent of the class," said Kuhn. "In our 2001 class, they form a majority."

Elena Veber, who began full-time graduate work this semester, exemplifies the current SFSU MBA student well. Veber worked for a dot-com startup for two years until it downsized last January.

"I had been thinking about going back to school for a while, but it's hard to do while working, so the minute I lost my job I started preparing for the GMAT," she said. She took the GMAT in March and applied to San Francisco State.

While waiting for fall classes to begin, Veber finished a certificate in client/server technologies from SFSU's College of Extended Learning over the summer and found a new job at an East Bay software company. "My experiences in the dot-com world didn't sour me to the field," she said. "In fact, my plan is to get an MSBA in marketing and e-commerce. I think that the MSBA adds the theory behind the practical experience I've received on the job."

San Francisco State University's College of Business offers a Masters of Business Administration and a Masters of Science in Business Administration. The MSBA allows students to design a program that reflects a concentrated emphasis in one or two areas.

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NOTE: Art Kuhn, director of graduate studies for the College of Business, can be reached at (415) 338-2667 or at Elena Veber can be reached at (925) 858-8682 or at

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Last modified October 30, 2001, by Office of Public Affairs