Master of Engineering Management

Master of Engineering Management (MEM or sometimes abbreviated also as MsEM) is a degree designed for engineers who want to specifically get into the business management of engineering companies. Simply put, it is a course where one is taught to apply business skills and expertise in tech product-based companies or engineering companies.

The course has its genesis in the US' Missouri University of Science and Technology in the year 1967. Since then, many institutes across the globe have understood the need for such a masters program and have begun to offer Master of Engineering Management (MEM), Engineering Management (EM), System Design & Management (SDM) or Master's in technology management degrees (MTM).

Let us analyze this degree along the same parameters as one would analyze the much widely known MBA degree -

Educational Background

Clearly, Engineering Management degrees are for applicants with a firm educational grounding in technology. A bachelor's in science, Technology or Engineering with a strong Math background is a prerequisite to pursue this degree.

Work Experience

Most of the universities do not require a minimum work experience for this program. Colleges like Cornell, Dartmouth etc. take in applicants without any real time corporate exposure. However, some colleges do have a minimum work requirement - like MIT's school of engineering offering a SDM degree in collaboration with its MIT Sloan school of management requires at least 5 years of work experience (if only bachelors' degree but 3 years if holds a master's in engineering degree)

Course Duration and batch size

Just like the MBA degree, the MEM also has varied course durations. There are universities offering a 1-year program as well as a 2-year program. Typically, these courses have a smaller batch size ranging from 35 students to around 80 students as the overall intake.

Course curriculum

These courses are usually engineering degrees offered in collaboration with a business school (like in the case of MIT's SDM).

As the courses are designed to have a management career in tech companies, there will be many engineering management subjects that are mandatory such as operations and supply chain management, product design and development, technology strategy, product marketing. The course will also need participants to select some of the subjects as continuation of their own engineering. Apart from these, there will be management related electives such as Accounting for Managers, Corporate Finance, Organization Design and Behavior, Marketing Management, Organization Information Systems, Operations Management, Industrial Financial Decisions, Leadership in a Global Environment etc.

Tuition Fee and Average Pay

The tuition fee for these programs are comparable to MIM programs and range between $40,000 to $60,000 for the entire program. The average package would be in the range of $60,000 to $90,000.

Job Prospects and Career Path

Almost 90% of the students end up getting placed in technology or engineering companies. Some of the top tech giants like Google, Microsoft, Cisco, Apple etc are known to regularly scout the top universities for such students. The common profiles are

  • Operations/Supply Chain Engineering
  • Systems Engineer/Architect
  • Project/Program Manager
  • Product Manager
  • Business/Financial/Data Analyst
  • Entrepreneur/Founder
  • Consultant (general, technical)
  • Technical Lead/Manager
  • Applications/Sales Engineer

The candidates can reach CXO positions in 10+ years after graduation. Some of the other high-profile jobs they can be holding in the same duration are VP/Directors of Strategy, Product Management, Engineering, Systems Engineering, Program/Project Management, Operations, Development.

Admission Procedure

The admission procedure requires few or all the below requirements depending on college or program -

  • TOEFL or IELTS for non - natives
  • Bachelors or Master's in engineering or related sciences - basically a STEM background
  • GMAT / GRE - depends largely is needed. Some universities do not ask for these if the applicant has some work-ex (determined by respective universities).
  • LoR and SoP are mandatory for almost all programs
  • Some colleges also ask students for few essays

The procedure is a two-step process. The first step is evaluation of profile and exam score submitted by the applicants and shortlisting of candidates. The second step is a face to face or skype based interview.

The final selection is done based on test score, academic performance, extra-curricular participation, work-ex, interview performance, and the zeal to excel showcased during the entire process.

What is MEMPC

MEMPC is a group of universities offering MEM programs which came together to collaborate, exchange ideas, share best practices and refine curriculum to meet the ever-changing industrial requirement. The group strives to make the MEM program relevant to the real-life scenarios by collaborating with

industries experts and eminent speakers, taking insights from their experience and constantly modify the course based on the feedback received.

The colleges that are a part of MEMPC are -
  • Cornell University
  • Dartmouth College
  • Duke University
  • John Hopkins University
  • MIT
  • Northwestern University
  • Purdue University
  • Tufts University
  • University of Southern California