MBA in Sustainable Systems

BGI at Pinchot’s MBA in Sustainable Systems (hybrid format) program combines residential intensives with distance learning. Students may choose to complete their program in either two or three years, depending on the time frame that best allows them to meet their personal and professional commitments.

In the MBA in Sustainable Systems program, students and faculty meet nine times each year for four-day intensives (mid-day Thursday through mid-day Sunday) at our IslandWood learning site on Bainbridge Island, Washington. Between intensives, faculty use distance learning technologies to hold class sessions and engage students with other instructional materials.

The program’s format offers an immersive learning community with the flexibility of distance learning. Its design allows students from across the United States to participate in the BGI educational experience while continuing to live and work in their current place of residence.

Student Retention: 95%
Course Rating: 80%
Faculty Rating: 91%
Faculty Advanced Degrees: 81%

Integrated curriculum with intensive community

The First Year

The first year of the MBA in Sustainable Systems is a totally integrated curriculum that covers the traditional MBA Core, while addressing social and environmental concerns throughout.

The curriculum is divided into three integrated course sequences:

Capitalism in Context: Economics for People & Planet (9 credits)

Values & Values Creation: Business Models for the 21st Century (9 credits)

Means & Measures: Accounting for Triple Bottom Line Success (9 credits)

This integrated curriculum begins by providing a systemic and historical context for our students’ work together, incorporating concepts of economics, sustainable business, social justice and systems thinking. Next, we look at the traditional business disciplines of strategy, marketing and operations as we seek to develop business concepts that deliver value to the marketplace within the context of a larger set of values. Finally, we look at means and measures for financing a business, accounting for its progress and measuring its success against a triple bottom line.

Leadership and Personal Development (6 credits)

In addition to these more traditional components of the MBA Core, students begin Leadership and Personal Development, a series of one-credit courses over six quarters of study allow for personal reflection, curriculum integration and the development of leadership capacity to engage successfully in the complexity of business.

The Second Year

In contrast to the first year’s integrated curriculum, the second year of the program offers students many options for customization and focus. Required courses are:

A year-long Action Learning Practicum (9 credits) focusing on one of two areas:

  • Entrepreneurship, for students who hope to start their own business or social enterprise
  • Organizational Leadership, for students who wish to effect change within large established organization

Two courses in Management (6 credits)

  • Management I: Managing in a Changing World
  • Management II: Engaging Complex Organizational Systems

Four elective courses (12 credits)

These credits may be used to fulfill the requirements of a functional specialization in one of the following Concentrations:

  • Finance
  • Sustainable Food and Agriculture Systems
  • Sustainable Built Environment
  • Sustainable Energy Solutions

Electives are expected to change from year to year, and additional electives will be added to our catalog as we get closer to the beginning of the school year.

Upon joining BGI, you become a member of a global professional network. The BGI community includes academic leaders, industry innovators, students and alumni who provide a continuing source of knowledge, experience and inspiration.

Even after graduation, the community continues to share business and learning opportunities. Your engagement with the BGI community introduces you to a dynamic group of professionals who are working together to change business for good.

The MBA in Sustainable Systems program combines residential intensives with distance learning. Students and faculty meet nine times each year for four-day intensives (mid-day Thursday through mid-day Sunday) at our IslandWood learning site on Bainbridge Island, Washington. Between intensives, faculty use distance learning technologies to hold class sessions and engage students with other instructional materials.

The program’s format offers an immersive learning community with the flexibility of distance learning. Its design allows students from across the United States to participate in the BGI at Pinchot educational experience while continuing to live and work in their current place of residence.

IslandWood hosts our MBA in Sustainable Systems just outside of Seattle, WA on Bainbridge Island. This is what summer camp wants to be when it grows up—a regenerative retreat steps from urban infrastructure is a LEED Gold campus nestled in a 200-acre wonderland. On the island we put values in action, from breakfast to bedtime. IslandWood’s kitchen is dedicated to local, organic, seasonal food that enriches the earth and the soul. This space is at the brink of a closed-loop system; living buildings have learned some large lessons here.

Between intensives, students in the MBA in Sustainable Systems program stay connected using our online learning technology. The hub of our online learning community, the Commons, runs on Moodle, an open-source virtual learning environment (VLE) used by more than 2,000 educational institutions worldwide.

Our virtual classroom allows groups to hold real-time meetings with audio and Web sharing. This includes a shared whiteboard, slide show sharing, application sharing, Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) technology and the ability to work directly on a classmate’s computer.

Academic Calendar 2014-2015

2014-2015 Academic Calendar

New Student Orientation, Session 1: Aug 28 – Sep 2 at Channel Rock, Cortes Island, BC, Canada
New Student Orientation, Session 2: Sep 5 – 10 at Channel Rock, Cortes Island, BC, Canada

2014 – 2015 Fall
Sep 29-Dec 12
Winter
Jan 5-Mar 20
Spring
Mar 30-Jun 12
Summer*
Jun 22–Sep 11
Registration Due Aug 19 Nov 18 Feb 17 May 12
Tuition Due Sep 2 Dec 2 Mar 3 May 26
Quarter Begins Sep 29 Jan 5 Mar 30 Jun 22
Last Day to Drop with 100% Refund Oct 3 Jan 9 Apr 3 Jun 26
First Intensive Oct 9-12 Jan 15-18 Apr 9-12
Schedule Adjustment – last day to drop with 75% Refund Oct 14 Jan 20 Apr 14 Jul 7
Last Day to Drop with 50% Refund Oct 28 Feb 3 Apr 28 Jul 21
Second Intensive Nov 6-9 Feb 12-15 May 7-10
Third Intensive Dec 4-7 Mar 12-15 Jun 4-7
Finals Period Dec 8-12 Mar 16-20 Jun 8-12 Sep 7-11
Quarter Ends Dec 12 Mar 20 Jun 12 Sep 11
Grades Due & Posted Dec 19 Mar 27 Jun 19 Sep 18
Commencement Jun 7

* Summer Break: July 27–Aug 7, 2015 (two weeks)

2014-2015 Administrative Holidays (administrative offices closed)

  • Labor Day 2014: September 1, 2014
  • Thanksgiving: November 27-28, 2014
  • Winter Holiday: December 24, 2014 through January 1, 2015
  • Martin Luther King Day: January 19, 2015
  • President’s Day: February 16, 2015
  • Memorial Day: May 25, 2015
  • Independence Day: July 4, 2015
  • Labor Day 2015: September 7, 2015

Academic Calendar 2013-2014

2013-2014 ACADEMIC CALENDAR

New Student Orientation, Session 1: Aug 30 – Sep 4 at Channel Rock, Cortes Island, BC, Canada
New Student Orientation, Session 2: Sep 7-12 at Channel Rock, Cortes Island, BC, Canada

2013-2014 Fall
Sep 30-Dec 20
Winter
Jan 6-Mar 21
Spring
Mar 31-Jun13
Summer*
Jun 23-Sep 12
Registration Due Aug 20 Nov 19 Feb 18 May 13
Tuition Due Sep 3 Dec 3 Mar 4 May 27
Quarter Begins Sep 30 Jan 6 Mar 31 Jun 23
Last Day to Drop with 100% Refund Oct 4 Jan 10 Apr 4 Jun 27
First Intensive Oct 10-13 Jan 16-19 Apr 10-13
Schedule Adjustment – last day to drop with 75% Refund Oct 15 Jan 21 Apr 15 Jul 8
Last Day to Drop with 50% Refund Oct 29 Feb 4 Apr 29 Jul 22
Second Intensive Nov 14-17 Feb 13-16 May 8-11
Third Intensive Dec 12-15 Mar 13-16 Jun 5-8
Finals Period Dec 16-20 Mar 17-21 Jun 9-13 Sep 8-12
Quarter Ends Dec 20 Mar 21 Jun 13 Sep 12
Grades Due & Posted Jan 3 Mar 28 Jun 20 Sep 19
Commencement Jun 8

* Summer Break: July 28–Aug 8, 2014 (two weeks)

2013-2014 Administrative Holidays (administrative offices closed)

  • Labor Day 2013: September 2, 2013
  • Thanksgiving: November 28-29, 2013
  • Winter Holiday: December 24, 2013 through January 1, 2014
  • Martin Luther King Day: January 20, 2014
  • President’s Day: February 17, 2014
  • Memorial Day: May 26, 2014
  • Independence Day: July 4, 2014
  • Labor Day 2014: September 1, 2014

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