Big 3 MBA Alliance in Kansas City

The University of Kansas, University of Missouri at Kansas City and Rockhurst University have joined forces to form the Big 3 MBA alliance. The business and management schools of KU, UMKC and Rockhurst University have collaborated to highlight the value of an MBA degree from one of Kansas City’s top-tier institutions.

The alliance is emphasizing that students should study for accredited masters of business administration (MBA) degrees rather than getting an MBA from a cheaper but less prestigious higher-education program.

“An MBA is a major investment both financially and from a time standpoint, and students should carefully select their program”, said Neeli Bendapudi, dean of the KU School of Business.

What is the Big Three MBA Alliance?

The University of Kansas (KU), University of Missouri – Kansas City (UMKC) and Rockhurst University (Rockhurst) offer the only AACSB-accredited MBA programs in the region. They offer full campus facilities, thriving alumni networks that span the globe, world-class research faculty and a long-standing histories of MBA tradition in Kansas City.

The Big 3 Alliance has one simple goal: to educate prospective MBA students and employers in the Kansas City metro area on the value of an AACSB-accredited MBA program, meaning our students learn from, and with, top faculty and peers.

AACSB Accreditation

Less than five percent of the world’s 15,000 business schools are accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. AACSB accreditation represents the highest standard of achievement in business education worldwide.

The process of AACSB accreditation is rigorous, externally reviewed and difficult to maintain. It sets a tough admission standard that requires the GMAT and considers GPA and work experience. The process assesses quality of faculty, strength of curriculum, and breadth of institutional research.

Why Accreditation Matters

Faculty at AACSB-accredited institutions are professionally or academically qualified in their area. Professional qualification guarantees that they are practitioners in their fields and therefore up to date with industry trends and best practices. Academic qualification means they contribute regularly to scholarly writings in their field, documenting that they are the thought leaders in their areas of expertise.

AACSB is the biggest and oldest accrediting agency for business and finance degrees. Earning AACSB accreditation is a voluntary process requiring significant commitment, self-assessment, peer review and dedication from a school’s administration. And it doesn’t end there. Every five years, schools must pass a rigorous peer review in order to maintain this prestigious accreditation.

Choosing an Established Program

Each of the schools represented boasts a long tradition of providing students with a quality graduate education, and offers access to extensive alumni and employer networks in the business world.

  • KU has offered an accredited MBA program since 1962; the Kansas City MBA began in 1979.
  • UMKC’s Bloch MBA has been accredited since 1974.
  • Rockhurst University has offered an MBA since 1975.

Each university has a broad, wide-reaching MBA alumni network — KU with more than 6,000, and Rockhurst and UMKC with more than 5,000 each.

Nationally Ranked

These three AACSB-accredited MBA programs are nationally ranked, further showcasing that their brands and reputations carry nationally recognized weight.

  • Rockhurst’s Management MBA is ranked No. 21 in the nation by U.S. News & World Report.
  • KU’s MBA in Kansas City is the top-ranked MBA program in the region.
  • The Bloch MBA in entrepreneurship at UMKC is ranked among the top 25 programs in the nation by Princeton Review.