Education reform is one of the fastest growing business markets in the United States, and the University of Virginia has risen to the challenge with a new and unique dual degree program offered by its Darden School of Business and the Curry School of Education.
According to a statement announcing the launch, the new Curry-Darden MBA/M.Ed. dual degree is designed for a new generation of education reform leaders for whom business skills are invaluable and for business leaders who have a special interest in education reform.
Curry School of Education Dean Robert Pianta and Darden School of Business Dean Robert Bruner agree that this new program has the potential to create significant positive change in education.
“Darden’s program accelerates personal and professional growth and provides an entrepreneurial ecosystem that inspires innovation,” says Bruner.
“Our two schools’ combined efforts to develop a new crop of educators grounded in the principles of school instruction and administration, and in business leadership, will be a boon for positive education reform. We also believe it will be of great benefit to students and ultimately, the world that they will inherit.”
The groundbreaking program combines Darden’s case method instruction, strength in team building and entrepreneurial approach with Curry’s evidence-based work in teacher effectiveness, curriculum innovations and measurable student gains.
Students will earn credits in a residency/internship with partners who provide real-world settings in education, such as the Darden-Curry Partnership for Leaders in Education (PLE), charter schools and charter management organizations, state agencies, and large high-need urban school districts.
“Education reform is a hot topic in the business world, and I think there’s a lot that the analytical, problem-solving mind can bring to the table,” says Ryal Tayloe, Darden MBA candidate, class of 2012 and president of the Darden Education Club.
“For business-minded people like me who haven’t taught in schools or held a career specifically in education, this dual degree program promises incredible exposure to the Curry School and more opportunities to get in and make a difference in the education world.”