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MBA in Innovation and Entrepreneurship Answers "Why?" for Engineer

MBA in Innovation and Entrepreneurship Answers "Why?" for Engineer

by Mark Kirby

Mark Kirby

My mechanical engineering degree gave me the tools I needed to bring value to the field, but I never developed a passion for the coursework. Industry tends to push engineers into project management for their logical thinking and skill with numbers. I knew I wasn’t where I wanted to be and felt unprepared for the business demands of project management. Rarely satisfied with my career, I felt trapped by the decisions of a naïve 18-year-old.

The rare times I did enjoy my job were when it was necessary to create a process, a new path for getting something done, or democratize a technical concept.

I noticed there are three kinds of people in industry:

  • The assembly line type who is content to follow the processes designed by others
  • The project manager type who figures out HOW to accomplish goals set by others
  • The entrepreneur who discovers WHY and sets the goals themselves

I realized I wanted to understand the WHY. After two decades of immersion in the engineering HOW mindset, I knew I needed to aggressively change my thinking patterns.

As I began researching graduate programs, I discovered that Cedarville University’s MBA with an innovation and entrepreneurship concentration was exactly what I needed. The core MBA curriculum filled the business knowledge gaps left in my engineering degree, while the concentration courses taught me to creatively solve problems and develop processes that would benefit my organization. Every class has been immediately applicable, and I felt excited about my career path for the first time in years.

These are some of the personal benefits the program has brought me:

  1. I now know what I was supposed to do with my interest in art and process development: DESIGN, not engineering.
  2. My fear of losing a job is gone. Not only is failure OK, but I also now have the confidence that, starting from scratch, I can identify a need, design a solution, develop a business model, and pitch it in about eight months. I now understand the WHY!
  3. The interaction with the faculty and the people I grew to know through interviews in support of the assignments has opened me up to new perspectives, ideas, friendships, and mentorships.
  4. I have developed empathy for the people I serve through my work, realizing that owning a business is risky and business-owners need people that look beyond completing the task, and strive to support their business model.

Cedarville’s MBA with an innovation and entrepreneurship concentration has opened me up to new ways of thinking, new attitudes, and new aspirations. It has helped me along the path of finding my calling. After 20 years, I have reason to be optimistic about my career.

Mark Kirby earned a BSME in 2003 and an MBA with an innovation and entrepreneurship concentration in 2022 from Cedarville University. He is an engineering consultant in the greater New Orleans, LA, region.


Cedarville University’s online MBA with an innovation and entrepreneurship concentration is a perfect complement for creative engineers like Mark. Or, choose Cedarville's online Master of Arts in innovation, which will equip you with business knowledge and problem-solving skills to enact real change for any organization. The MA has no prerequisites, so you can start and finish quickly.


Posted in Entrepreneurship MA in Innovation MBA

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