This semester, the Leon Hess Business School (LHBS) has piloted its micro-credential program, a collection of courses that undergraduate business students can complete for quantifiable learning outcomes, earning them a micro-credential badge. This badge serves as a digital verification of competency to future employers.
As per the School’s website, “The LHBS provides micro-credentials to validate and affirm our students’ learning, making them more appealing to potential employers. Micro-credentials show that a learner has mastered a skill, competency area, or field of study. These offerings will be completed in short, flexible timeframes with a clear focus.”
The micro-credentials offered fall into one of the following categories: accounting fundamentals, investment management, entrepreneurship, and digital integrated marketing communications.
Janeth Merkle, DBA, Assistant Dean of Student Engagement for the Leon Hess Business School, explained how this new initiative aligns with the LHBS’s school-wide strategy, “The offering of micro-credentials addresses one of the Leon Hess Business School’s strategic pillars— student excellence. The Leon Hess Business School, under the leadership of Dean Raj, is committed to building opportunities to help students succeed in their future careers.”
The LHBS’s faculty have a variety of hopes for the micro-credential program.
Joseph McManus, Ph.D., J.D., MBA, Associate Professor and Chair for the Department of Management and Leadership, elaborated on two specific points, “First, I would like the micro-credential program to offer an added incentive for students to deeply engage with some of the core subject areas of their concentration. Second, I also expect that it will be a meaningful designation on resumes that employers will value and see as a differentiating characteristic for our students that achieve the credential.”
“I hope that the micro credentials will highlight the accomplishments of our students and improve the visibility and selectivity of their LinkedIn profiles and resumes,” concurred Nancy Uddin, Ph.D., Associate Professor and Chair for the Department of Accounting.
Because this micro-credential program involves the courses students would normally take within a given business concentration, there are no additional credits or courses students would need to take to earn the credential.
“While students do not need to take extra credits or courses, they will need to perform exceptionally well across some of the existing requirements,” clarified McManus. “There is no downside in that they get to engage in greater depth with subjects of interest while making themselves more competitive.”
Min Lu, DBA, Associate Professor and Chair for the Department of Marketing and International Business, added, “We emphasize to students that the success of their career development is not only based on their interest or love for the subject matter, but proper knowledge and skills also as it will enhance their careers in the future.”
Mariana Marques, senior business student who recently earned the Entrepreneurship micro-credential, said, “I personally loved every single Entrepreneurship course that I have taken at Monmouth. The courses that I took really pushed me to put myself in a true entrepreneur’s shoes and build multiple businesses from the ground up. Taking these courses have taught me what it truly takes to be a business owner.”
“Students need to take advantage of this program because in today’s competitive business world, employers are looking for more than a degree. Schools should have initiatives like the micro-credentials program to give students an opportunity to showcase their skills learned in the classroom,” advised Emily Finnegan, junior business student.