Graduate Certificate in Strategic Risk and Responsibility
There is significant demand, especially in regulated industries, for individuals with a strong understanding of corporate risk management, compliance, governance, social responsibility and sustainability – and a specific need for leaders with knowledge and skills across these critical functions, which are seldom optimally aligned in organizations. The graduate certificate in Strategic Risk and Responsibility aims to explore the interconnectivity and influence of these key areas to improve managerial decisions and strategic planning, while providing students with the fundamentals of risk evaluation and decision theory, reputation management, corporate governance, compliance programs and processes, and organizational business ethics—with particular attention paid to corporate social responsibility, sustainability, and resilience.
Part-time graduate certificate program
- Evening courses designed for working professionals
- Complete at your own pace taking one or more courses per term
Graduate Certificate in Strategic Risk and Responsibility
The Graduate Certificate in Strategic Risk and Responsibility provides:
- A program developed in partnership with industry experts and employers
- Advanced, intensive curriculum building financial acumen, strategic thinking, and professional effectiveness
- Courses that count towards graduate certificate credits within a St. Thomas MBA degree
- Designed for current St. Thomas MBA students or graduates of a regionally accredited (or international equivalent) MBA program.
Curriculum and Course Descriptions
12 credits total
Required Courses (6 credits)
The present economic crisis, along with a range of other looming challenges (climate change, unrest in the Middle East, health and food security concerns, changing consumer preferences and social mobility), have presented global organizations with the most daunting array of risks in at least 60 years. Broadly, this situation presents organizations with the challenge of developing more comprehensive approaches to the management of risk--what has come to be called Enterprise Risk Management (ERM). Key to the ERM concept is the view that all managers are expected to act as risk managers within the scope of their duties. Thus, the study of risk management is no longer just for those interested in technical specializations such as finance, audit, or safety/security risk; it is an important topic for all business students.
Compliance and ethics management is a complex management process that requires program design that supports management's objectives, coordinated activities to be operated across functions and geographies, and performance measurement to reasonably assure effectiveness and a return on management's investment. This course will engage participants' personal knowledge and experience- in dialogue with instructors and guests from industry with law and business backgrounds- to explore assessment, communication and training, investigations and discipline, reporting and disclosure, auditing and monitoring, and remediation), leading practices relating to these program elements, and how to measure effectiveness (from the perspectives of both ethics and economics). The course will also use case method and other practical examples to explore the familiar distinction between compliance-based and integrity-based programs.
Corporate Social Responsibility & Sustainability Course (3 credits)
Global Risk Leadership has long been a course that challenges students to better understand how firms (and societies) assess and address Global Risks. In doing so, the relationship between risk management and both resilience and sustainability has been introduced and explored. As will be seen, ‘managing’ many of these challenges is far beyond the capabilities of single organizations (or even nations), and so the concept of risk leadership is introduced to provide a framework for thinking about the necessary ingredients for meaningful responses to these risks. The threats to corporate resilience and sustainable viability come not just from global risks, to be sure, but an understanding of global risks and related leadership-driven responses will provide insights into resilience and sustainability actions even in the face of more narrow-scope risks.
Sustainability is a market imperative in risky and volatile world in which the enduring success of business is influenced by challenges that are beyond the capacity of any single organization to control. These challenges include, for example, economic forces; social forces; environmental forces; and technological forces. Sustainability is also a moral imperative and has been defined as development that meets the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Today, sustainability is often central to business strategy because of these market and moral imperatives.
This course introduces students to the field of social entrepreneurship, the practice of identifying, designing, starting and growing successful mission-driven ventures. These include both “non-profit” and for-profit enterprises designed to respond to a specific social need, as well as more traditional ventures working to incorporate socially-responsible practices into their business models. The course provides an overview of the processes, challenges, and demands associated with creating ventures that seek to integrate financial and social/environmental benchmarks of success.
Professional Effectiveness Courses (3 credits)
This course will discuss the fundamental basis for scheduling and project scope difficulties, and provide tools for creating practical solutions. We will become more aware of why we encounter similar pitfalls with each new project. Discover that you are not alone in encountering a chaotic project life-cycle, the complexity people bring, and the reasons why our organizations are continuing to become more chaotic. This course will examine the new phase development of project management. We will use numerous disciplines to create a more dynamic and flexible project management methodology. These disciplines include Industrial Behavior, Psychology, Human Behavior, Chaos and Complexity, Organizational Behavior, and Systems Theory to name a few. As project managers, we face impossible schedules, unrealistic specifications, and limited budgets. As leaders we face personnel issues, motivation requirements and organizational issues. This course will provide insight and practical examples of the areas of knowledge needed to practice effective project management in today's dynamic work environment.
This course considers communication principles and practice necessary to manage corporate and product perceptions in the evolving landscape of traditional and social media. Explores how employee, investor, community, government and organizational communication practices and engagement strategies differ from each other, yet are used together to communicate a consistent organizational message. Case histories focus on reputation management: issues and programs; how research, planning, communication and measurement are applied; and the roles of communication and management to successfully build and maintain positive reputation.
This course provides a selected survey of theory and research on social influence and persuasion, drawing primarily from work in the social sciences. It is designed to build a conceptual foundation for students to develop their own skills and techniques for increasing message persuasiveness, instigating behavioral and attitude change, and protecting oneself from unwanted persuasion. Topics covered have broad applicability both within and outside business contexts but relate particularly to issues in marketing, sales, and management. Class will utilize a variety of approaches including lecture, case analysis, and both instructor- and student-led discussion.
Change in organizations has become pervasive. This course will examine how change occurs in organizations so students can better understand the process and develop a framework for understanding and managing change more effectively. The course will look at major world and societal changes that contribute to the amount and pace of change in business organizations, review the major theories that try to explain change, and explore diagnostic tools and actions needed for facilitation and implementation of change. Students will also be challenged to become more successful managers by recognizing their personal capacities to direct and experience organizational change while dealing with competing demands on their energy, time and attention.