Does It Matter Where I Get My Advanced IT Degree?
By School of Professional Advancement | Date Monday, Jun 18th, 2018
The short answer: yes.
Many aspects of today’s work life have a digital component. As responsibilities in the digital realm expand, the demand for highly trained IT leaders does too. Whether you are looking to break into the IT industry or to enhance your current career, you’ll want an IT Master’s Degree program that brings together lessons in IT and business to help you build the required skills for success. Look for an advanced curriculum that reflects the evolving digital landscape, taught by knowledgeable faculty from a respected institution of higher education.
Here are a few things to consider when it comes time to decide from where you will attain your advanced IT degree:
University and Program Reputation
A program’s reputation and credibility should carry some weight. A prominent institution will have deep roots, strong research capabilities, and a high rate of students enrolled in graduate studies. Its academic prestige should be grounded in rigorous coursework with real-world applications taught by distinguished professors who have extensive experience in the field. You will want a nationally recognized program that prepares graduate students to achieve their career goals.
Caliber of Faculty and Lessons
Look for faculty who know first-hand what it takes to become an effective IT manager. Professors and academic advisors should be able, present and as invested in your education as you are. How they teach should be as important as what they teach. Your instructors should use engaging pedagogical methods that highlight current IT issues facing the industry and know how to motivate students to come up with innovative solutions. They should teach you how to integrate IT knowledge with real-world business objectives and apply it in relevant industry contexts. Your professors should be able to tap into their own hands-on experience with the likes of artificial intelligence, local and regional business councils, data and security systems, and various startup ventures and bring them into the online classes you attend. They should also be willing to assist you with career support, networking and development events.
Does It Include a Capstone?
A capstone project allows you to put what you’ve learned to use while still in academia. Capstones are designed to make sure you can apply your IT knowledge to such areas as IT budgets, infrastructure, strategic direction, and policy and procedure. They serve as an opportunity for you to get a feel for what it is like to be in IT management, weighing risks and decisions, before you step into an actual IT leadership role.
Be sure your program teaches you the skills you need to excel on the job, and also how to market those skills. You should have access to a career services advisor with whom you can schedule an appointment. Your advisor will help you locate internships, refine your resume and cover letter, brush up on interviewing techniques, and explore new sectors where your IT training will be valuable and useful. Career services can be rooted in the local community but should also extend to the region and beyond.
Faculty & Alumni Network
The best schools have the best networks. During and after your program, you will be plugged into an extended network of faculty and other IT management alumni with whom you can communicate and collaborate. A powerful network helps you learn and connect. You can source advice from people with a variety of career perspectives, make connections for new employment opportunities, and learn about career transitions.
If you agree that it matters where you get your advanced IT degree, consider the Tulane School of Professional Advancement and our Online Master of Professional Studies in IT Management. Tulane’s MPS in IT Management provides flexible online learning taught by distinguished professors who care about the industry and those who enter it. They serve as leaders, teachers and mentors. And the Tulane network is strong, diverse and extensive.
Request more information today to learn more about how Tulane can help you enhance your IT career.