Specialized MBAs are in demand

As the number of MBA graduates around the globe continues to climb so, too, does the trend toward specialization in such areas as banking, financial services, technology management, marketing and brand management, wrote the Toronto Sun April 17.

The Schulich School of Business at Toronto’s York University has long offered specializations. "This Faculty was founded on the notion that business was not just private-sector business, but there was also public business and not-for-profit business," says Charmaine Courtis, executive director of student services & international relations.

Schulich’s roster of MBA programs offers 18 specializations. It’s one of just a handful in North America that offers an MBA that specializes in arts and media administration – and it’s been offered since the mid-1970s.

More contemporary offerings – business and sustainability, and real property infrastructure management – reflect Schulich’s commitment to meeting the evolving needs of stakeholders, says Courtis.

Demand for MBAs will continue. "We view the MBA as an applied degree that assumes you have had some experience in business before you arrive," says Courtis.

The average age of MBA students at Schulich is 29 years, and they typically have five to six years of work experience under their belts. The program attracts primarily two types of students. "Some are trying to build on what they’ve already started in their career and are taking more courses in an area of interest," says Courtis. "The others are career switchers."

That latter group taps into the evolving workplace. "Careers keep changing…. Business as we knew it 10 years ago is going to be very different from business five or 10 years from today, and jobs that our students are going to be applying for don’t even exist now," says Courtis. "That’s also been one of the reasons why the specializations have been really successful."

Higher education: Why more parents are willing to pay up

For David Batori, it’s part of the cost of being a parent, wrote the Financial Post April 18, in a story about registered education savings plans.

The Toronto realtor says providing for the education of his two children isn’t even a question for him. He’s picking up the bill.

“My parents did it for me and I’ll do it for them,” Batori says. The costs have escalated slightly from when he graduated from York University a couple of decades ago. “I paid $1,200 per year back in the day. I have friends of mine with kids in university spending $4,000 to $7,000 per year just for tuition.

“I think even if I couldn’t afford it, I would find a way. I don’t want my kids to have any excuse. If I had to, I would pay for my kids’ RESP before my RRSP,” Batori says. “Talking to my friends, I find everybody is doing it; providing for their kids.”

Police await toxicology reports on how woman died

Police are awaiting toxicology reports to determine how a young woman died in a house near York University, wrote InsideToronto.com April 18.

Police were called to a basement apartment at 27 Aldwinckle Heights on Friday, April 15, around 11am and found the body of a woman undressed from the waist down.

Police said the victim, who is believed to be of Asian descent and in her early 20s, had been dead for some time.

According to police, the woman was having an online webcam conversation with a person overseas around 1am Friday morning when she answered a knock at the door.

The man at the door asked to use her cellphone. A struggle ensued between the woman and man, and the man then turned off the deceased’s laptop.

The laptop is now missing, police said. It is believed to be an IBM ThinkPad T400.

Investigators don’t know if the woman knew the man, however the man was unknown to the person she had been talking with online.

Police said there was no evidence of substantial trauma to the body of the deceased, nor signs of sexual assault.

Investigators have located a cellphone in the apartment that belonged to the woman and it is undergoing forensic examination.

The man who struggled with the deceased is described as white, 20 to 30 years old, 6-feet tall, 175 to 200 pounds, with a muscular build. He has medium-length brown hair and was wearing a blue crew-neck T-shirt.

On air

  • Study results from a team of York University researchers that show organic farms are more energy efficient than conventional farms were featured on radio stations in Owen Sound, Kentville, NS, and Brandon, MB, April 15.
  • Alexandre Brassard, political science course director and director of research in York’s Glendon College, spoke about the federal election campaign, on Radio Canada International (Montreal) April 16.