Isenberg School of Management & Commonwealth Honors College Capstone Experience Options
Isenberg School of Management majors who are also members of Commonwealth Honors College are required to complete a six-credit Isenberg School Capstone Experience (CE) in order to graduate with Departmental Honors. Completing any honors six-credit Capstone Experience will also qualify a student for Commonwealth Honors College as long as specified GPA and Capstone Experience grade requirements are met.
Here is a brief overview of the available options for satisfying the Honors Capstone Experience requirement:
Completion of a six-credit Independent Capstone Experience Research Thesis or Project
The honors thesis and project options are designed to introduce students to aspects of independent research usually conducted by graduate students and academic professionals. Although completing one of these options is challenging, it provides the opportunity to explore an academic interest in depth. Normally, students who intend to complete an honors thesis or project will sign up for “Honors Research” (499Y) in the first semester of the CE, followed by “Honors Thesis” (499T) or “Honors Project” (499P) in the second semester. To do an Honors Thesis or Project, you must form a committee consisting of at least two faculty members. This should be formed no later than the pre-registration period of the first CE course, e.g., by April for a fall/spring thesis or project. For detailed information on setting up a committee and registering for Honors Thesis or Project, see the guidelines on the Commonwealth Honors College website, found at: http://www.honors.umass.edu/capstone-experience
Completion of a six-credit (or more) Capstone Experience honors course
Capstone Experience courses are an alternative to completing an honors thesis or project. They provide students with an opportunity to explore a topic in depth whether the focus is within their major or interdisciplinary in nature.
The following approved Honors Capstone Experience course option exists within the Isenberg School:
Business Strategy and Entrepreneurial Leadership (SCH-MGMT 499C-D; two courses completed in the fall and spring semester, in succession; three-credits each course) This Capstone Experience Course fulfills the Capstone Experience requirement of Commonwealth Honors College as well as the BBA Track Culminating Experience (MANAGMNT 494BI). Enrollment preference is given to BBA students. This course is designed to familiarize students with cutting edge ideas in strategic management of for-profit companies. The course is an extension and an embellishment of the BBA Track Culminating Experience Strategy course (MANAGMNT 494BI). As such, the objectives of this course include a conceptual understanding of business strategy fundamentals as well as a hands-on and practical grasp of what it means to strategically lead business organizations. Concepts, books, speakers, and field trips will be spread throughout the fall semester. SCH-MGMT 499C will comprise an extensive review of prominent strands of thinking in Competitive Strategy. SCH-MGMT 499D will be focused on practical application of strategy concepts via field trips and executive speakers as well as via public reports and management discussions of companies' operations.
By application only. Applying for admission to SCH-MGMT 499C-D does not guarantee a seat in the course. You should have an alternate plan in the event you are not selected. If you decide to apply for SCH-MGMT 499C-D, you can find the application here. The application deadline is Friday, March 22 at 5:00pm. Decisions will be sent from Dean Rodriguez before April 1. If you have questions about an alternate plan please speak with your departmental Honors Program Director, or an advisor in Commonwealth Honors College. Questions regarding SCH-MGMT 499C-D can be directed to Assistant Dean Melvin Rodriguez at firstname.lastname@example.org.
International Macro-Finance & Financial Crises (FINANCE 499C-D; two courses completed in the fall and spring semester, in succession; three-credits each course) This Capstone Experience Course fulfills the Capstone Experience requirement of Commonwealth Honors College and the Thesis requirement for Departmental Honors in Finance. This course is designed to familiarize students with the phenomenon of financial crises. As such, the objectives of this course include a conceptual understanding of the complicated interactions in international finance and the role of “key players” in the global financial system. Students learn how to detect signals of a forthcoming crisis and evaluate the possible solutions. FINANCE 499C develops the necessary macroeconomic tools to understand the causes and the consequences of a financial crisis, and evaluate potential solutions. Students are required to monitor an economy in “distress” on a weekly basis (team project) and thoroughly examine a major financial crisis (individual project). At the end of the fall semester, students are required to submit a proposal for a Thesis. FINANCE 499D is focused on the completion of a Thesis related to financial crises, guiding the students through all the necessary steps to address their hypothesis questions. (This course does NOT satisfy the SCH-MGMT 494BI requirement.)
By application only. Applying for admission to FINANCE 499C-D does not guarantee a seat in the course. You should have an alternate plan in the event you are not selected. If you have questions about an alternate plan please speak with your departmental Honors Program Director, or an advisor in Commonwealth Honors College. If you are interested in FINANCE 499C-D, please contact Professor Sanjay Nawalkha at email@example.com.
Marketing Honors Case Study and Honors Internship: Tools for Professional Success in Marketing (MARKETNG 499J-K 6 credits total in Fall Semester Only; three-credits for 499J and three-credits for 499K) Open to Marketing majors who are also Commonwealth Honors College students. In some appropriate situations non-Marketing Commonwealth Honors students will be considered. The course focuses on applying the conceptual frameworks of marketing to real-world problems faced by actual companies. Each student as a part of a team will have a specific marketing problem from a real company [some recent companies included LEGO, Boston Scientific, and Carvel Ice Cream] that requires investigation and solution over the course of the semester. Course meetings will mimic consulting firm staff meetings, rather than the traditional lecture/discussion format. There will be significant discussion of marketing procedural issues around the projects during class meetings, helping students to develop proper methodologies, analysis and presentation skills while laying a foundation for achieving success in the business world. Students will gain a better understanding of themselves and the strengths and weaknesses they bring to an employer as well as the satisfaction of having a true impact on a business organization. (This course does NOT satisfy the SCH-MGMT 494BI requirement.)
By application only. Applications for 499J-K will be sent to all Isenberg Honors Juniors via email by the end of February. Interested students should email their completed application to Professor Villarroel Ordenes at firstname.lastname@example.org. The final date will be noted in the application paperwork. Accepted students will be enrolled in the class by the Marketing Department. Since acceptance is not guaranteed, students should have an alternate plan to complete their capstone requirement. If you have further questions regarding Marketing 499J-K, please contact Professor Francisco Villarroel Ordenes at email@example.com.
In addition to these Isenberg School Capstone Experience course options, there are many other Capstone Experience courses offered by other UMass departments that will satisfy the Commonwealth Honors College Capstone Experience requirement. Completing courses in other departments will still qualify students for Commonwealth College Honors but will not satisfy the Departmental Honors requirements for any Isenberg School department. For a complete list of Capstone Experience course options with descriptions see Commonwealth College’s Online Course guide found at: http://honorsapp.honors.umass.edu/courseguide
If you have questions on fulfilling Commonwealth Honors College or Departmental Honors requirements, be sure to check with the Commonwealth Honors College Advising Office (210 Commonwealth Honors College – Bloom Honors Advising Center; 545-2483), or your Honors Program Director (see the list below).