Information Systems
VCU Department
About the Program
Careers in IT
Application Process
FTEMS Calendar
Tuition & Financial Aid
Contact Info
Information Sessions



Q: Is the international trip required?
A: At this point, the trip is a requirement. It is one of the courses, part of the Global Challenges module. The globalization effect of and on IT is a huge managerial challenge. The best way to understand these challenges is to see an off-shore operation first hand.

Q: Will this program prepare me for the PhD program?
A: Yes. Depending on your PhD goals, objectives, and timeline the traditional MS program may serve as better preparation. However, this program is a true MS and carries the same recognition as any other MS program. For PhD programs with a managerial, rather than a technical or academic, bent this program may serve as better preparation than a traditional one.

Q: Who are the CIO mentors that will be involved with the program; are they other than the board representatives?

Q: What if I can’t make it to some of the sessions because I’m out of town—is there any distance learning/recorded sessions that I can access remotely to “catch up”?
A: Yes. While a great deal of learning with this program will take place via student interaction, we understand that “life happens”. We intend to make the classroom sessions available on-line after each weekend session.

Q: How much time outside the regular classroom sessions will I have to commit to the program?
A: It is impossible to give a fixed number of hours required. The time will vary widely from project to project, topic to topic, and student to student. The best guess-timate is approximately 10 hours per week. We do not expect that the out-of-class time requirement for this program will be significantly more or less than with any other graduate program. Our intention is to make all out-of-class assignments relevant to students’ work. It is conceivable, therefore, that much of the out-of-class time will be directly related to work students perform regularly, so out-of-class time could be time spent on the job.

Q: How are you going to assess our performance?
A: Students’ performance will be assessed throughout the program. Assessment will consist of tests, participation, team work, and other assignments. Students will receive a letter grade (A-F) for each course, and each course contributes the same weight toward the students’ overall Grade Point Average.

Q: Is there a basic computer technology requirement for class work—notebook computer, software, etc.?
A: Students will be required to have a mobile technology solution (notebook PC, tablet PC, etc.) If students do not have access to a mobile solution, the Department can provide one for an additional fee. All software required will be provided and is included in the cost of the program.

Q: What is included in the $27,000 tuition—books, trip, meals, parking, etc?
A: The $27,000.00 includes tuition, books and other necessary supplies, parking, meals, and the international trip (airfare and lodging).

Q: What is the advantage that this program has over an MBA, whether fast-track or traditional?
A: This program focuses intently on the issues that are peculiar to technology management, as opposed to management in general. It is designed to prepare students for the unique challenges facing IT executives, who are increasingly being called upon to make critical business – as well as technology – decisions for their organizations.

Q: What makes this program unique?
A: Many programs are increasingly involving members of the business community in their delivery. VCU has taken that involvement to a higher level with this program and has sought considerable industry input in the development as well as the content of the program. There is a team of an academic and an industry practitioner responsible for the development and delivery of each of the courses. Students will also be assigned a CIO mentor, with whom they will have regular contact. Mentors will share their decisions and dilemmas with students at each meeting. Students may even have an opportunity to enter the boardroom and see first hand how decisions are reached.

See below from one of our industry partners:

" I support this program because it not only teaches best practices for the IT industry but it incorporates lessons learned by leaders in the local IT community. Changes are a constant in the IT world, and it is just as important to keep up with new practices and disciplines as it is to keep up with the newest technology. This program lays the groundwork for this. It is a true collaborative effort between the academic world and the business world."

- Connie Frudden, Assistant Vice President, IT Application Development, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond

Q: I am currently enrolled in the Fast Track Executive MBA program. Can I participate in the dual-degree option after I graduate?
A: In order to take advantage of this option, FTEMBA students must enroll in the FTEMS program prior to their FTEMBA graduation. FTEMBA students will graduate with their class in May and join the FTEMS program in August.

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School of Business,
Virginia Commonwealth University
1015 Floyd Avenue, Box 844000
Richmond, VA 23284-4000
Phone: (804) 828-1595
Fax: (804) 828-8884

Information Systems Department
1015 Floyd Avenue, Box 844000
Room 4181
Richmond, VA 23284-4000
Phone: (804) 828-1737
Fax: (804) 828-3199
E-Mail: Maureen Carley


    Last dated: 6/7/06