MIM Specializations and Summer Electives

As part of the Master of International Management program at Portland State University, students are encouraged to choose a specialization. This often involved three elective courses, making up twelve credit hours of the total program. While this might appear appear to be a slim addition to the overal curriculum, these courses offer students the opportunity to dig much deeper into a topic of their interest, and hopefully one that will help shape their career after graduation. Today we’ll look at the four available specializations, and the classes for each.

Full time students can select from one of the four specializations, starting elective classes in the fourth term (summer); part-time students select their specialization prior to their first summer term, and take one class in Summer I, Fall II, and Summer II respectively. The four specializations and related courses are (click each for included pdf with details):

  • International Social Entrepreneurship and Sustainability
    • Sustainability Metrics in Business
    • Product Design & Stewardship for Sustainable Enterprise
    • Global Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship
    • Managing and Leading International NGOs
  • Global Marketing
    • Global Entrepreneurship
    • Global Selling & Distribution Management
    • Marketing in Asia & Pacific Rim
  • Global Supply Chain Management
    • Global Sourcing & Supply
    • Global Logistics Management
    • Integrated Global Supply & Logistics Management
  • International Finance
    • Global Strategic Cost Management
    • Financial Analysis & Business Valuation
    • Cases in International Corporate Financial Management
Here are what several current students had to say when we asked about their upcoming plans for MIM specialization:
I will pursue sustainability specialization because I want to transfer my project management background and experience towards projects related to this subject. I will probably take metrics (because I can tie in my analytics background), managing NGOs (because I run one) and the product design one (because it makes sense to understand the value chain of a company and where to innovate sustainably.) –Rodrigo George, Part-time
I’m doing global supply chain management because this seems like the trump card we have over regular MBAs—the best opportunity to differentiate myself. I also have heard rave reviews about Cliff’s sourcing class, so I’m excited for that one.  –Michael Everson, Full-time
I’m also choosing global supply chain and agree very much with Michael’s statement about differentiation. I also have a strong interest in sustainability and how sustainability can be implemented in supplier relationships. I have heard that Cliff’s class is pretty rad. So I am taking the sourcing class and global entrepreneurship during summer term. –Aiyesha Christian, Full-time
I’m looking forward to starting the sustainability specialization this summer with “Metrics for Sustainable Business.” I currently work for a non-profit and see the need to provide metrics that describe the long-term consequences of investment decisions. In a post-crisis world, senior managers are demanding better risk management capability in their firms. Providing insight that aids the long-term sustainability of the firm should become more valuable, whether that insight is focused on environmental impact or other various risk management concerns. –Heath Nieddu, Part-time
In the end, I went with a subject I am passionate about: sustainability. It turns out that the track that people sometimes dismiss as being the least practical or marketable is anything but. Appropriately applied sustainability metrics can add real value for a variety of firms (whether for profit or non-profit) and it turns out there are practical applications right where I am in the world of financial services. I’m excited to kick off the journey with Metrics for Sustainability this summer! –Ian Barker, Part-time
Given the different specializations available, which would you pursue in MIM and why?

Ryan is a part of the Master of International Management full-time 2012 cohort, and a MIM Student Ambassador. Currently he works within the Willamette Valley wine industry as a social media consultant, and wants to broaden his career in marketing to a global level through the MIM program. His favorite aspects of MIM are networking with other students from around the world and learning Mandarin Chinese. Ryan is passionate about food, wine, and travel and writes on these topics for other sites. Visit Ryan’s site here.


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