Steps taken in German-American certificate program


John Davidson | The Chart

Dr. John Groesbeck, dean of the Robert Plaster School of Business (right) welcomes President Ute Ambrosius, Vice President Sascha Müller-Feuerstein, and Simon Gollisch, from the Ansbach business school, to Plaster Hall on Monday morning.

Brad Stout, Editor-in-Chief

Following a two-day visit to the Joplin area, officials from Ansbach University in Germany took another step closer toward the completion of a joint German-American Business Certificate Program with Missouri Southern.

President Ute Ambrosius and vice president of academic affairs Sascha Müller-Feuerstein of Ansbach, along with Simon Gillisch from the Ansbach school of business, met with Southern’s John Groesbeck, dean of the Plaster School of Business, and Chad Stebbins, director of the Institute of International Studies, Nov. 17 and 18 to finalize the program.

According to Stebbins, Southern and Ansbach would each teach four of the eight courses required as part of the 24-hour graduate certificate program. The program would be available for students around the world and require those who enroll to spend a week on each campus as a culmination of their global, intercultural experience.

It could also lead to faculty exchanges and open up doors for other collaborations between the two universities.

“They have a very strong emphasis on business there [at Ansbach], but also on journalism and communications,” said Stebbins. “So, we could certainly collaborate with Ansbach on the journalism side of it.”

Currently, the program is scheduled to begin fall 2015. Officials from both universities, however, still need to determine the cost and marketing strategy of the certificate program before it can move forward. “I think the goal is to start next fall, but that may or may not be possible,” said Stebbins.

The long-term goal for the program once it begins is to evolve it from a joint certificate program into a joint master’s program, says Stebbins.

“Once the details for the certifacte program are worked out, the master’s degree would very easily follow,” said Stebbins.

Located in the Bavaria region of Germany, Ansbach is Southern’s oldest bilateral partner and has approximately 3,000 students enrolled.

“We’ve had this long relationship with Ansbach,” said Stebbins. “Both sides know each other very well.”

There are currently three students from Ansbach attending classes in the Plaster School of Business this semester.