The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kharagpur’s Vinod Gupta School of Management is starting two MBA programs for working executives at it Kolkata and Bhubhaneswar campuses. Working on a 3-year structure that will allow participants to work while they study, the courses are largely targeted towards the local population of each city they shall function in. While the Executive MBA at the Kolkata campus has a general management bent the Knowledge Industries MBA (KIMBA) at the Bhubhaneswar campus would focus on the IT and ITES sectors, explained EMBA coordinator Prof Gautam Sinha.

The intakes for both the programs would be 15 to 30 students each while the minimum eligibility will be three years of work experience and either an engineering education or post-graduate education in commerce, science or economics. More about the application system to the courses on the VGSoM website.

Prima facie, there are few differences between the EMBA and KIMBA except for a couple of core courses. The IT/ITES focused KIMBA has courses such as Technology Management and Services Management, which in the EMBA are replaced by International Management and IT & Business Applications Laboratory. Interestingly, the KIMBA has two courses on Financial Accounting while the EMBA has none. Both courses cost Rs 6 lakhs in fees, including a one-year international immersion program, which according to Prof Sinha may be carried out with one of IIT Kharagpur’s 99 tie-ups with various international institutions.

While both the courses look similar to 3-year part-time MBA courses in structure and content, Prof Sinha argues that several executive MBA courses across the world follow the part-time model. While that may be true, popular executive MBA programs in the USA or Europe wrap up in an year’s time, recognizing that the opportunity cost for working executives to stay away from work is high. To that extent, VGSOM’s Executive programs seem like 3-year part-time MBAs that give you an Executive MBA degree at the end, thus keeping you away from the stigma attached to the ‘part-time’ bit of part-time MBA.

Prof Sinha defends the three-year pattern of VGSOM’s Executive MBAs saying, “One-year or two-year programs are high pressure situations which might not be conducive for people with families.”

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