A unique program in the UC system, the Master of Management (M.M.) offered by the Graduate Group in Management of Innovation, Sustainability, and Technology (MIST) at the University of California, Merced, is a one-year professional degree program aimed at turning new college graduates into leaders in the Central Valley, California, and beyond. The M.M. program leverages specific strengths in engineering, science, and social sciences found across schools on campus, creating an exemplary cross-functional program that addresses the need for developing managers and leaders with knowledge in their areas of expertise, combined with a sound foundation of management skills, focusing on adaptive management of complex coupled human and natural systems, including for-profit and not-for-profit organizations and public and private enterprises.
The M.M. program has several unique features. As a professional degree that is intended primarily for students interested in non-academic careers, the program has a stronger focus on practical training than on theory. Admissions focuses on high achieving students with undergraduate or graduate degrees from science, engineering, or social sciences who are seeking to become leaders and managers. The program serves recent graduates from any undergraduate major, with admissions the first few years focusing on recent graduates of UC Merced’s undergraduate programs, with a goal of turning existing students into a new generation of leaders in the Central Valley and beyond. The curriculum comprehensively addresses the basic skills of management with special emphasis on innovation, sustainability, and technology, aiming to enhance students’ transition to successful careers in their fields of specialty. The program includes coursework and teamwork in areas such as organizational behavior, finance, data analytics, spatial analysis, service management, operations management, innovation, and policy. It also includes a capstone activity working independently on a personal project or professional internship.