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Table of Contents 1

Letter from the Dean


Frank Lafuente: Student profile


About the UHD MBA


What makes the UHD MBA unique?


Curriculum and course schedule


Customize your MBA


Tayyaba Ramirez: Student profile


MBA concentrations


Application process


Tim Johnson: Student profile


Prerequisite Courses


Manuel Rojas: Student profile


About UHD

A letter from the Dean: e invite you to join us for an exciting educational experience. The University of Houston-Downtown College of Business offers a unique MBA program tailored to working professionals who want to improve their business acumen, marketability and knowledge in managing and leading companies. Most importantly, we’re pleased to provide a curriculum that you will not find in other MBA programs. The UHD MBA offers corporate-driven concentrations that were designed by accomplished executives in the Houston community. We brought together top leaders from diverse industries and held multiple round-table discussions to understand the skills that are most needed in today’s MBA graduates. They shared with us the competencies that they are seeking in professionals, the curriculum that is most valued and the characteristics needed in future leaders. We listened to these industry leaders and shaped the MBA curriculum from these round-table discussions. The result is an MBA program with corporate-driven concentrations that will enable you to learn the skills that are required for success in today’s competitive business environments. Participation in this program makes you uniquely qualified as a job candidate. These are the skills that have been deemed most important by dozens of top executives in corporations and organizations. We are eager to guide you through this exciting educational journey, and to help you to advance your career. We hope to see you in one of our MBA classes. Join us as we develop the best and brightest executives.


D. Michael Fields, Dean University of Houston-Downtown College of Business

D. Michael Fields Dean University of Houston-Downtown College of Business | 1

Frank Lafuente What does aerospace engineering have in common with the UHD MBA? Recent alum Frank Lafuente. Lafuente holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering, a master’s degree in aerospace engineering and a professional engineering license in Texas. He decided to earn an MBA in order to improve his career advancement opportunities after leaving the space industry. Having previously worked as an International Space Station systems engineer for United Space Alliance and SAIC, Lafuente knew that his skill set would transition well into the oil and gas industry but was concerned he lacked the business experience required to advance professionally. “The engineering might be similar between industries, but I saw how the oil and gas companies were organized and knew I needed more business experience to complement my technical knowledge,” he said. Lafuente’s wife, who attended UHD, encouraged him to explore the University’s new MBA program in order to gain those necessary business skills. According to him, it’s just one more thing his bride was right about. “I really enjoyed being a part of the first MBA class,” he said. “The administrators were very open to our suggestions and I feel a sense of ownership with the program.” Lafuente was also impressed with the caliber of the faculty members, whom he calls “invaluable resources.” “The professors care about the success of their students,” he said. “They are also great contacts for the future because of their vast experience. I feel confident that I could contact any of my professors for professional advice and that is priceless.” Today, Lafuente is a senior supply chain project engineer in the lubricants division at Shell, a position he took while completing his MBA. “Through the program, I’ve gained skills that helped me transition into new roles, work better with colleagues and better manage my time,” he said. “I know that my supervisors are impressed that I was dedicated to my education and professional development.”



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The University of HoustonDowntown MBA

The UHD MBA program is designed for working professionals. With a convenient downtown location, evening classes and corporatedriven concentrations—you’ll find an exceptional graduate program with an innovative curriculum, uniquely structured to accommodate the schedules of working professionals who seek to accelerate their career. Students praise the format of the program, where face-to-face time is optimized with valuable discussions. Administrative tasks or assignments are conducted online and group



work is often performed outside of the classroom. Each of these features aims to assist students balance the many important components of their busy lives— while creating an exciting atmosphere of intensive learning. To further maximize convenience, students can select the time frame to complete the program that best suits their personal schedule. The UHD MBA can be completed in one, two or three years, depending on the preferences

of the student and their unique time requirements. Combine these benefits with faculty members who are focused on student success and you’ll find an MBA program unparalleled in Houston or this region. Corporate-driven concentrations drive value to students by incorporating top professionals in the classroom through team teaching. The UHD MBA program prepares students to seize opportunity, while providing a transformative educational experience.

What makes the UHD MBA unique? The University’s unique location and our relationships with the many businesses located right outside our doors make us acutely aware of the educational needs of working professionals. Here are just a few of the reasons that the UHD MBA is the best option for Houston’s professionals:

Flexible degreecompletion schedules enables students to complete the program in one, two or three years Concentrations in course curriculum were developed through collaborations with industry executives, increasing the marketability of UHD MBA graduates Program feedback is reviewed by industry executives to continually refine the curriculum Exceptional faculty with experience in managing and leading businesses Small class size to maximize interaction with faculty

Skills acquired can be immediately applied to the workplace

Combined learning formats optimize understanding, with face-to-face instruction, online learning and team projects outside of classroom time

Evening schedules enable students to maximize learning while maintaining professional and family obligations

Access to the Career Development Center during the program and as alumni assists in identifying a position or making a career move

Convenient downtown location with METRO light rail stop, and parking in the business building

Faculty UHD faculty have a breadth and depth of experience that enables students to learn business principles from professionals who have led organizations and hold critical roles in thriving and growing organizations. Faculty members’ backgrounds and interests are as diverse as business itself, creating a unique and rich learning environment for the MBA students. Many faculty members have global experiences and connections that, when combined with their passion for teaching, enable a UHD MBA student to grasp and gain the skills required to lead organizations, including private enterprise, government, and international agencies focusing on trade, finance, marketing or management.

Teaching Methods Immersed in each class is the business case method of learning. Using real examples faced by businesses, and combining instruction with classroom discussion, exercises, role playing and team work, students generate multiple solutions to business problems. By learning both hard and soft skills, students are equipped to advance their careers. Each course uses a different combination of exercises to best illustrate and apply learning methods. Most importantly, the one-on-one interactions and small class sizes provide students with a hands-on learning experience they will value for years beyond their education.

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I knew that I needed to differentiate myself from other people in the job market. The UHD MBA was the solution for that.

— Manuel Rojas UHD MBA class of 2013

Curriculum and Course Schedule The UHD MBA program is delivered in a concentrated format that combines face-to-face instruction and virtual interactions. It enables students to maximize learning while optimizing their classroom time. The hybrid format allows classes to be offered one night a week, giving students the opportunity to use their time more efficiently and balance their busy lives.

MBA Program Details The overall length of the MBA program depends on the concentration selected. When the more traditional General Management concentration is added to the MBA core classes, the program total is 34 credit hours. The length of the program varies between 36 – 42 credit hours with the selection of one of the corporate-driven concentrations. Fall and Spring semesters are broken into two eight-week terms; all MBA courses in the Fall and Spring are offered in a term format.  For most students, the MBA core classes are completed in one year by taking two courses per term. Most concentration classes, also completed in one calendar year, are taken one course at a time.  Each course begins at 7 p.m. and meets one night a week for an eightweek term. Students have access to a dedicated MBA lounge, providing an area to gather, study or eat prior to class.



Customize your MBA degree Choose your time frame for completing your MBA You can complete the UHD MBA program in one, two or three years. Simply choose your preferred format below. One year – Attend three nights a week, simultaneously taking MBA core and concentration classes. Two years – The most common format. Students will take two courses per term in their “core class” year – typically their first year – and one course per term in their “concentration” year. Three years – Designed for students who can only devote one night a week to their program.  Core classes are spread out over two years and one year is devoted to concentration classes.

Choose your curriculum focus through corporate-driven concentrations: Increase your marketability to employers through focused learning. Five concentrations are available to students, enabling you to refine your skills in the area of your choice. Each concentration was developed by working with top executives in leading companies, who indicated what skills are desired in today’s MBA graduates. Corporate-driven concentrations are the result, enabling you to learn the skills that are required for success in today’s competitive business environments.

Choose whether to start with your concentration or core MBA classes: Because the focused knowledge of the corporate-driven concentrations may be desired more quickly by some students, UHD MBA students have the opportunity to take their concentration courses in the first year of their program, followed by the MBA core classes. This option is available because prior to entering a concentration, students will be provided a self-paced body of prerequisite knowledge for which students must demonstrate proficiency before entering the first corresponding concentration class.

Choose to take only the concentration classes as a free-standing graduate certificate: Each concentration is available as a graduate certificate, enabling professionals to hone in on a specific area of learning that best increases their individual skill set. Graduate certificates can be completed in 10 – 12 months. With graduate certificate classes held just one evening a week— and the same evening each week throughout the duration of the program, you can acquire graduate-level specialization and determine if continuing with an MBA is right for you. Students who have completed a graduate certificate have a limited time for which those courses can satisfy the concentration component in an MBA curriculum.

For a list of current concentrations, visit

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Tayyaba K. Ramirez Tayyaba Ramirez achieved many goals when she earned an MBA. A first-generation Pakistani, Ramirez became the first member of her family to earn a master’s degree and also prepared herself with the tools to advance in her profession. Ramirez earned a bachelor’s degree in supply chain management from UHD in 2008, but felt that an MBA would make her more marketable in the workplace. Just months before completing the program, she made the switch from Halliburton to a position as an airport subcontracts manager at Rockwell Collins, an avionics and information technology systems provider. “I went from a supervisory role in my previous position to a managerial one, while I was enrolled in the MBA program,” she said. “I know that having an MBA helped me successfully make the transition. The MBA has already paid me back, both financially and professionally.” While balancing a career and school required careful planning, Ramirez said she gained valuable skills during the program that she feels are priceless. “I was very motivated to complete the MBA program because I knew I would get out of it whatever I put into it,” she explained. “I found that the skills and knowledge I learned in the classroom were directly applicable to my career and it has greatly benefited me professionally.” With a career and bachelor’s degree in supply chain management, Ramirez is now considering returning to UHD to take part in the newly created MBA concentration in that field.



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MBA Concentrations Customize your MBA with a concentration to enhance your credentials. Select one of five concentrations or select the General Management curriculum to round out your graduate education. All concentrations have been developed by leading executives across multiple industries, creating a unique approach to graduate

education unparalleled in today’s business schools. Designed to be career elevating for graduates—the skills being developed in students match the areas executives have indicated are instrumental in making a business successful. Value is built for the student and for industry professionals

hiring a graduate with the competencies learned through a concentration. To maximize the learning across the concentration, before entering their first concentration class, students must have demonstrated proficiency in a corresponding self-paced prerequisite knowledge module.

For a list of current concentrations, visit

Finance Concentration The Corporate Finance Graduate Certificate is appropriate for individuals pursuing careers in corporate finance which include the areas of business development, forecasting, and prioritizing capital investments guided by mutual consideration of both return on investment and client interests. In this program, students will formulate budgets based on capital requirements, identify capital structure issues, understand cost of capital, learn dividend policy considerations and the market for corporate control. Among these and many other skill sets, students will also apply the knowledge learned to recognize and avoid unprofessional practices and unethical behavior.

Curriculum includes: • Ethical and Professional Standards • Financial Forecasting and Behavioral Finance • Capital Markets and Investment Planning • Communication for Financial Professionals • Corporate Finance

Human Resource Management Concentration The role of a human resources professional is key in any company. Whether seeking talented employees for an organization, serving as an employee advocate, or working with top leadership as a strategic partner—the demand for strong human resources professionals continues to grow. This concentration will help professionals acquire critical knowledge in the field of human resources, while adding credentials to enable them to stand apart from other HR professionals. Competencies taught range from labor laws to handling the strategic side of managing human resources. These learned skills can be immediately applied in the workplace.

Curriculum includes: • Legal Environment of Human Resource Management • Talent Acquisition • Talent Management • Compensation and Benefits • Strategic Human Resources Management

Leadership Concentration

Curriculum includes:

“Management is doing things right; Leadership is doing the right things.” This famous quote by Peter Drucker sets the foundation for the Leadership Concentration. This set of curriculum focuses on instilling the knowledge, skills and social intelligence needed for executives to lead groups—to do the right things.

• Interpreting and Delivering Business Results

This concentration will enable students to effectively manage for results. Each student will refine their personal leadership style to be the most effective within their organization, their community and their circle of influence.

• Supporting the Business Strategy

• Interpersonal Effectiveness in Business • The Business Leader’s Role in Talent Development • Leading Teams for Business Results



The MBA has already paid me back, both financially and professionally.

— Tayyaba Ramirez UHD MBA class of 2013

Investment Management Concentration Sophisticated financial knowledge is a necessity in today’s competitive, business environment. In this program, students will analyze a variety of financial securities and learn how to effectively design and manage investment portfolios. Students will gain skills to analyze a variety of complex financial tools including derivatives, common stocks and futures.  Developing an investment skill set is desired by companies, and it is a skill set that helps companies deliver a sustainable competitive advantage. In this concentration, students will design investment portfolios capturing the broad knowledge of the capital markets, institutions, financial products and analytical tools used in the valuation of financial instruments. In addition, students will also apply the knowledge learned to recognize and avoid unprofessional practices and unethical behavior.

Supply Chain Management Concentration Credentials in supply chain management are a strong asset for a professional, providing many career options and opportunities for growth. These skills are honed in this concentration, developing advanced competencies in the field of supply chain management. Skilled supply chain professionals are required in areas such as purchasing, contract management and project management, quality, procurement and inventory management.

Curriculum includes: • Ethical and Professional Standards • Financial Forecasting and Behavioral Finance • Capital Markets and Investment Planning • Communication for Finance Professionals • Investment Management Statistics

Curriculum includes: • Legal Aspects of Supply Chain Management • Decision Modeling in the Supply Chain • Logistics • Operations and Supply Chain Management • Leadership in Supply Chain Management • Strategic Sourcing and Procurement

Some of the companies who partnered with UHD in designing the curriculum content for MBA concentrations: Aflac Bank of America Bracewell & Giuliani Calpine Corporation CenterPoint Clark Freight Lines, INC Coca-Cola Constellation Energy Partners

Crane Worldwide Logistics eRail Commerce, LLC Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas - Houston Branch Fidelity Investments Goodwill Industries of Houston Hewlett-Packard Company ING US J.P. Morgan Kinder Morgan Memorial Herman Foundation METRO Northwestern Mutual Port of Houston Authority

Regions Bank Salient Partners Spring ISD State Farm Insurance & Financial Services Companies Sysco The Plaza Group, Inc. The Woodlands Financial Group Union Pacific Railroad Wal-Mart Logistics Women Leading Together Worley Parsons

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Program Application MBA Program Application Applicants for the MBA program are evaluated on all elements within the application. No one individual component is more important than another; rather, all elements are taken into consideration to select individuals in the program who demonstrate scholastic ability, motivation, managerial experience and potential. The application and its supporting documents are all weighed together in the decision-making process. Candidates should complete all steps in the “How to Apply” section below. Graduate Certificate Program Application Candidates who wish to start in the graduate certificate program are required to complete steps 1 and 2a and may additionally be required to complete sections 2c and 3b in the application process below. A bachelor’s degree conferred must be shown on the official transcript. Students who wish to pursue a “soft start” to the MBA program and bypass the GMAT requirement may do so by successfully completing a graduate certificate, keeping in mind that admission to the MBA program will be conditional.

I feel confident that I could contact any of my professors for professional advice and that is priceless. — Frank LaFuente UHD MBA class of 2013

How to Apply: 1. Complete online application and submit application fee at 2. Submit the following to: UHD Office of Admissions – Graduate Admissions, One Main Street,

Suite 325, Houston, TX 77002.

a.   Official transcript(s) from all institutions attended post-secondary; all documents must be received

b. Official GMAT score report or copy of scheduled test date. c.   For students for whom English is not their primary language and/or students who graduated

from the degree/credit granting institution.

from foreign university:

1. Official TOEFL score. 2. Transcripts from institutions that include a course by course “evaluation with GPA indication.”

3. Submit the following documents in .pdf file format to: a. Two letters of recommendation from professional references. You can find the professional


reference form here:


A personal statement about why you are pursuing an MBA degree. The statement should not exceed 250 words. It is optional, but recommended. Some students pursuing a graduate certificate may be required to submit a personal statement. Resumé.

For application deadlines and tuition costs, visit or call 713-221-8252.

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Tim Johnson Tim Johnson enjoys helping others, which is why this engineer changed career paths and began working for a non-profit organization after years in software companies. While attending UHD for a degree in accounting, Johnson was promoted to CEO of Harmony House, an organization dedicated to providing housing and healthcare for Houston’s homeless. He knew an MBA would be the best decision for him. “I knew that I needed additional experience and education in management techniques,” he said. “And UHD’s MBA program was a great choice. I learned many things in the classroom that I was able to apply directly to my current position.” One of the most immediate changes for Johnson was how he perceived his employees. “I made several HR changes during the course of the program and began thinking about my employees as resources,” he said. “I also enjoyed working within group settings, because I learned how to work better with different types of people.” Johnson, like many students, was enrolled in the program while simultaneously working full time and supporting a family. In addition to serving as a CEO, Johnson also owns a mobile application company, 290 Design LLC, which produces the NFL Fantasy Football Cheat Sheet. To say that he is a busy person would be an understatement. The UHD MBA’s unique format helped him balance his many responsibilities. He said, “The hybrid format made the program very manageable. It’s an excellent way for busy professionals to learn the topics and skills necessary to be successful in the workplace.”



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UHD, with its topnotch professors, hometown atmosphere and diverse student body represents all that is good about Houston and was the perfect place to launch a first-class business career. — Cheryl Greaux UHD MBA class of 2013

Prerequisite Courses Prospective students applying to the MBA program who have earned an undergraduate degree in a field other than business may be required to complete one or more prerequisite courses. This will provide the basic theoretical concepts and tools that are the foundations for graduate management study. These courses have been designed in a flexible online format, enabling students to complete the course content when it is most convenient for them. Students applying to a graduate certificate program do not need to complete prerequisite courses. Prerequisite courses are offered every eight weeks once a term begins.

Prerequisite Courses – Curriculum Content: GBA 5202 Foundations of Management Theory GBA 5203 Accounting and Financial Information GBA 5206 Production Operation Management GBA 5207 Management Information Systems GBA 5208 Marketing Information GBA 5212 Quantitative Methods in Business GBA 5215 Legal Environment of Business



AACSB accreditation The UHD College of Business is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, AACSB-International, the premier professional accrediting body for business school programs. Only the top 5 percent of the world’s 12,000 business schools have achieved this accreditation, placing the UHD College of Business among the elite business programs in the world.

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Manuel Rojas Ambitious, forward thinking and hardworking are adjectives that perfectly describe UHD MBA alumnus Manuel Rojas. Rojas has a deep connection to UHD, having earned a bachelor’s degree in business finance from the University in 2008. He also appreciates that the University services students like him, who are from under-privileged neighborhoods and are the first in their families to attend college. When the school announced it was creating an MBA program, Rojas knew he needed to be a part of the first class. “I’m an ambitious person and I knew that I needed to differentiate myself from other people in the job market. The UHD MBA was the solution for that.” he said. Even in the program’s initial stages, Rojas was impressed with the caliber and diversity of students. He was the youngest member of the first cohort, but felt encouraged and inspired by the experience of his classmates. “All of the students had impressive backgrounds and contributed real-life experiences to discussions and group projects. I gained a level of confidence from conversing and working with them that I didn’t have before,” he said. “I can now call those people friends, professional contacts and resources, which is invaluable.” In addition to a new level of self-assurance, the MBA program also earned Rojas a salary increase in his position as a financial analyst with the Houston Hispanic Chamber. “Don’t underestimate the quality of the education, faculty and students in this program,” he said. “My education has truly changed my life.”



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UHD’s MBA program was a great choice. I learned many things in the classroom that I was able to apply directly to my current position. — Tim Johnson UHD MBA class of 2013

About UHD UHD was founded in 1974 in the heart of Houston’s central business district, near major freeways, the rail and bus lines, and in close proximity to downtown’s corporate centers and multiple Fortune 500 headquarters. The University of Houston-Downtown is an urban university, with its campus growing vertically rather than the traditional sprawling, horizontal layout of most American university campuses. UHD serves student populations that match the rich ethnic and multi-cultural diversity that defines the city of Houston. The student population is 42 percent Hispanic, 26 percent African-American, 18 percent white, 10 percent Asian, and 4 percent international or other ethnicity, with a total enrollment of nearly 14,000 in graduate and undergraduate studies. University-wide, approximately 2,300 students graduate each year. The University’s mascot is the gator. UHD prides itself on exceptional faculty and facilities, with students finding a unique opportunity to participate in research with faculty, build personal relationships with faculty mentors, and gain an enriched educational experience through small class sizes with one-on-one interactions. The faculty have earned an impressive reputation for caring about the success of their students. They build relationships that benefit both student and faculty well beyond conferring a degree—through networking and providing students with the resource-rich contacts that graduates can continue to tap into in the years beyond their graduate education. UHD is excited about the opportunity to bring its student-focused model to business professionals seeking the advanced skill set and knowledge offered through our MBA program. Within the College of Business’ state-of-the-art facility, a dedicated team of faculty is eager to assist the higher-level business student in accelerating his or her career growth. As one of four distinct and separate components of the University of Houston System, UHD offers educational opportunities and access to students from a variety of backgrounds.



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320 N. Main Street Houston, TX 77002 Office: 713-221-8252

MBA Viewbook  

The University of Houston-Downtown's MBA program prepares students to seize opportunity. It offers corporate-driven concentrations that were...

MBA Viewbook  

The University of Houston-Downtown's MBA program prepares students to seize opportunity. It offers corporate-driven concentrations that were...