March 25, 2020

Purdue offers combined degree program in human resources

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Students interested in earning a bachelor’s and master’s degree in human resources now have an accelerated option at Purdue University.

Beginning in fall 2020, the Purdue Polytechnic Institute and Krannert School of Management are teaming to offer a combined degree program, with students earning an undergraduate degree in human resource development (HRD) and a master’s degree in human resource management (MSHRM). Students will begin pursuing their master’s degree while completing undergraduate work, providing the ability to earn the degrees at reduced cost and in less time.

Polytechnic HRD students must complete at least 90 of the required 120 credit hours of undergraduate coursework before beginning classes for the Krannert MSHRM degree. The master’s degree will require 48 credit hours of graduate-level coursework over three semesters.

“The combined degree is a continuation of our ongoing collaboration between two academic programs and colleges,” said Mesut Akdere, an associate professor of human resource development in Purdue Polytechnic and leader of the Purdue HRD Virtual Lab. “The Purdue Polytechnic HRD major has an innovative emphasis on technology that successfully prepares students to be talent managers, change agents, employee champions and strategic partners.

“This combined degree will provide an excellent opportunity for HRD students interesting in pursuing further education in human resources.”

Brian Chupp, a clinical assistant professor in Krannert’s Organizational Behavior and Human Resources area, serves as academic director of the MSHRM program. He says it prepares graduates for all aspects of management.

“What makes Krannert’s MSHRM program unique from other offerings is that our graduates are not only well-versed in human resource management, but also in the business side of the organization,” Chupp said. “Our students take five to six MBA courses as well as work in teams with MBA students.

“A common complaint about HR professionals from senior leaders is that even though they understand the ‘people,’ they don’t understand the ‘business.’ Our graduates are well-prepared to be the business partners the organizations demand.”

Several academic connections already exist between Purdue Polytechnic Institute and the Krannert School. The combined degree may help open new doors to further academic collaborations.

“Purdue Polytechnic’s HRD program is one of the fastest-growing majors in the college,” said Steve Elliott, professor and interim head of the Polytechnic’s Department of Technology Leadership and Innovation. “This new combined degree strengthens our existing collaboration with Krannert’s organizational behavior and human resources management program and provides our students with opportunities for graduate education.”

Greg Beaver, executive director of master’s and Ph.D. programs at the Krannert School, said the new partnership is a win for both schools, but more importantly, a huge bonus for students pursuing a career in human resources.

“Krannert is a pioneer in the field of human resources, and our faculty are known worldwide for their leading research dating back to the founding of the school,” Beaver said. “I believe the MSHRM degree better positions students to leapfrog an entry-level position and be competitive for middle-management career options.

“Our graduates are getting a high return on investment, receiving competitive salaries at both Fortune 100 companies and startups. For example, our graduating class in 2018 had a mean starting salary at better than $88,000, and they were placed at well-respected, socially responsible companies like Amazon, Dell, PepsiCo, Phillips 66, Shell Oil and Deloitte Consulting.”

More information about the new degree program is available online.  

About Purdue University

Purdue University is a top public research institution developing practical solutions to today’s toughest challenges. Ranked the No. 6 Most Innovative University in the United States by U.S. News & World Report, Purdue delivers world-changing research and out-of-this-world discovery. Committed to hands-on and online, real-world learning, Purdue offers a transformative education to all. Committed to affordability and accessibility, Purdue has frozen tuition and most fees at 2012-13 levels, enabling more students than ever to graduate debt-free. See how Purdue never stops in the persistent pursuit of the next giant leap at purdue.edu.

Media contact: Joseph Paul, 765-494-9541, paul102@purdue.edu

Writer: Tim Newton, tnewton@purdue.edu 

Sources: Mesut Akdere, makdere@purdue.edu 

Greg Beaver, gbeaver@purdue.edu 

Brian Chupp, bchupp@purdue.edu 

Steve Elliott, elliott@purdue.edu 

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