Frequently Asked Questions
Do I have to be an engineer to join the Tauber Institute?
No. Although many of our students do have undergraduate degrees in engineering, some do not and excel in our program. We are looking for students who wish to enhance their understanding of technology and operations in anticipation of a leadership role in a corporate enterprise. If accepted into the Tauber Institute, you will gain an understanding of both the business and engineering aspects of technology and operations by way your of core coursework and through engaging electives. Emphasis is placed on the idea that integration of these disciplines is vital to the success of operations in today's global business environment.
What advantage does a Tauber Institute team project offer over other types of internships?
A Tauber Institute team project is a substantive, paid, multidisciplinary "consulting-like" experience for all Tauber students (subject to the student meeting the expectations and professional standards of the Institute and the team project employer). The Tauber Institute diligently works with sponsoring companies to ensure that all projects have both business and engineering components, are strategically relevant to the company, have defined deliverables and are backed by high-level executives. These aspects, coupled with a 2-3 person Tauber student team and supported by two academic advisors, lead to tangible results - both for the company and for a student's resume.
Students earn a competitive salary at the following ranges:
$1600 - $1775/week
Graduate students with 4 or more years of full-time work experience
$1350 - $1500/week
Graduate students with more than 2, but less than 4 years of full-time work experience
$1100 - $1200/week
Graduate students with less than 2 years of full-time work experience, including EGL students entering their fifth year of study.
How does the Tauber Institute give me an advantage in obtaining an excellent position when I graduate?
Actually, through several means. First, in conjunction with Industry input, the Tauber Institute has created the LeadershipAdvantageSM program to prepare students for the challenges that leaders face today - managing change, working in diverse team settings, managing projects effectively, etc. The series of modules that students complete prior to the team project not only prepare them for their internship experience, but also for the challenges they will face in their full-time position.
Second, by way of the substantive team project (described above). Third, the Tauber Institute creates opportunities for students to interact and network with project sponsor companies/executives and Tauber Industry Advisory Board members throughout the academic year. The Tauber Institute supplements Business School and College of Engineering recruiting by publishing several Tauber Resume Books throughout the year for corporate sponsors, alumni, and other companies. The Tauber Institute also sponsors "Tauber-only" interview schedules for companies interested specifically in recruiting Tauber students.
How big is the Tauber Institute?
We have anywhere from 90 - 130 students at one time, which comprise two "classes." About half of the students have completed a team project, while the other half are preparing to complete a team project over the upcoming summer. Within each Tauber class, about half of the students are pursuing an MBA and the other half a graduate degree in engineering. This proportion reflects our multidisciplinary nature.
What are the requirements for becoming a part of this program?
The Tauber Institute is an overlay to graduate Business and Engineering degree programs at the University of Michigan. Students must be admitted by a degree-granting program before being considered for the Tauber Institute. In addition, students are required to have a minimum of two years of full-time work experience to be part of the program, along with outstanding GMAT or GRE and TOEFL scores. Students should take advantage of the essays required for the degree program to which they are applying to express their interest in the Tauber Institute.
What are the primary activities that I will take part in with this program?
In addition to the required "Topics in Global Operations" class (TO701/MFG501) and "Manufacturing and Supply Operations"(TO605/MFG605), students are required to attend approximately 8 LeadershipAdvantageSM modules and complete 4 facility tours throughout the fall and winter semesters. The required 14-week summer team project takes place in industry in the May-August time period. Also, elective requirements must be fulfilled:
5.0 credits of (approved) engineering electives and 3.0 credits of approved Technology and Operations (TO) courses.
Dual Degree (MBA/Masters of Engineering) students:
3.0 credits of approved Technology and Operations (TO) courses.
Engineering Graduate Students:
3 credits of Business School electives (approved by the degree-granting department).
Engineering Global Leadership (EGL) Honors students:
12.0 credits of Business School electives (approved by the EGL program).
How do I apply for the Tauber Institute program if I've already applied or have been accepted by the College of Engineering or Ross School of Business?
Please fill out a Tauber Institute application (under the Prospective Students section at www.tauber.umich.edu) and e-mail (email@example.com) along with a copy of your resume and essay. We will request a copy of your application from the appropriate school should you be admitted to their program.
Are there any scholarship opportunities available through the Tauber Institute?
The Tauber Institute utilizes scholarships to recruit top individuals into the program. Scholarship offers are formulated during the admissions process based on past academic performance, leadership, and accomplishments. Recipients are notified along with their admissions decisions. In addition, some EGL students are also awarded scholarships based on academic merit.
Are there ways to improve my chances of receiving such an award?
Show strong past academic performance, leadership and a variety of accomplishments in your application.
Does the Tauber Institute offer any teaching or research assistantships? If so, are there any special criteria for international students?
No, the Tauber Institute does not offer any teaching or research assistantships. Many engineering and business departments and/or professors do, however, so please check with them.
Business Applicant Questions
Are there two admission decisions made on Tauber applicants - one from the Ross Business School and one from the Tauber Institute?
The application processes are separate; therefore, an applicant will receive two decisions. It is not possible to be admitted into the Tauber Institute if an applicant has not been admitted into the Ross School of Business.
In addition to the Ross School of Business application, do I need submit a separate application or essay directly to the Tauber Institute?
No, you don't need to send a separate essay if you are applying in conjunction with your MBA application (that is, you've checked the "Tauber Institute box" on the application). You should utilize the Career Goals essay to communicate your interest in the Ross program and the Tauber Institute. If you've done this, then you're all set.
If you've already applied and/or been admitted to the Ross program and did not check the Tauber Institute box on the application, you need to complete a Tauber application (under the Prospective Students section at www.tauber.umich.edu). We will request a copy of your application from the appropriate school should you be admitted to their program.
I applied to the Tauber Institute through my MBA application and have already scheduled an interview with the Ross School of Business. Do I need a separate interview for the Tauber Institute or is just one interview at the Business School required?
A separate Tauber interview is required. You will be contacted by the Tauber Institute to schedule your interview.
Can I be a regular MBA and take some operations/manufacturing classes at the Tauber Institute?
As a MBA student, you are allowed to take up to 10 credit hours from other Colleges/Schools on campus, you can use this opportunity to take some engineering classes. The only class closed to you is TO701 (Topics in Global Operations), which is strictly for Tauber students. Tauber students also have registration preference for TO548 (Integrated Product Development).
Why should I choose the Ross School of Business over other schools with operations programs?
The Ross School of Business is one of the few graduate schools in the U.S. that offers a comprehensive Operations program. Many of our students choose Ross and Tauber because of the flexibility of the program and degree options and the outstanding network of peers, faculty, and industry connections. People choose Ross because it is a clear leader in terms of fit, curriculum, and the emphasis on real world application of business education.
Will participation in the Tauber Institute limit my career options to operations or manufacturing upon graduation?
Not at all. The advanced leadership, teamwork, and critical thinking skills gained from participating in the Tauber Institute are highly valued by hiring companies and enable our graduates to successfully pursue a wide variety of careers. Recent graduates have accepted the following positions: Brand Manager, Product Manager, Senior Financial Analyst, Upper-level Business Management, Director of Marketing, and Senior Business Analyst (Consulting).
Will it take longer to get my MBA degree if I join the Tauber Institute because of additional course requirements?
No. Since the Tauber program is an overlay to the MBA degree, you use some of your 28 credit hours of free electives to fulfill our program requirements and graduate in four semesters.
What is the difference between the MBA and a Dual MBA/MEM or MBA/MEng?
The most obvious difference is that you earn two degrees if you pursue one of the dual degree paths. The dual degree programs constitute a deeper dive into engineering disciplines. The dual degree programs are arranged so that all requirements for both degrees are completed simultaneously and can be finished in two years.
What are the differences between the Dual MBA/MSE and MBA/MEM degrees?
The MEM option involves a mix of engineering and business classes that prepares the student for a successful career in a global or national manufacturing enterprise. An undergraduate engineering degree is required to apply for the MBA/MEM program. The MSE option (either in Industrial & Operations Engineering or Naval & Marine Architecture) provides more depth in terms of the engineering discipline and coursework.
As an MBA, do I have my choice of electives, or is there a pre-set list that I must take?
The elective requirements are flexible. Other than the required "Topics in Global Operations" class (TO701) and "Manufacturing and Supply Operations" (TO605), you can choose from a variety of electives to fulfill your Tauber requirements.
How can I improve the quality of my MBA application?
Admissions will want to see that you are coming to the Business School with a "game plan". By indicating that you are interested in the Tauber Institute, you already show that you have direction. We recommend you use your essays to reflect how the Tauber Institute can enhance your experience at the Business School. This will benefit your application, especially if you can demonstrate a clear grasp of what you will be doing for the next two years and are confident that this is the right career path for you.
Engineering Applicant Questions
Are non-IOE and/or non-MEng majors able to join the Tauber Institute? What graduate engineering degree programs do I need to be in to be a part of the Tauber Institute?
The Tauber Institute is open to graduate engineers in any program who are interested in operations and/or manufacturing. It is highly recommended that graduate engineers have some full-time work experience, but multiple internships will be considered.
How can a PhD student integrate Tauber in his curriculum?
A PhD student may be admitted to the Tauber Institute without any previous work experience. In order to fulfill his/her Tauber requirements, a PhD student must complete the following: MFG501 (“Topics in Manufacturing”), MFG504 (Tauber Institute Team Project), MFG 605 (Manufacturing and Supply Operations), the LeadershipAdvantage Program, 4 facility tours and six credit hours of Business School electives.
What are the benefits of completing a graduate engineering degree with the Tauber overlay?
Through the Tauber Institute, you will obtain a guaranteed team project (a paid 14-week internship), with substantive business and engineering content and robust deliverables, similar to a consulting engagement (subject to meeting the expectations and professional standards of the Institute and the team project employer). In addition, you will receive extensive leadership and teamwork training through various LeadershipAdvantage modules and you will have access to both engineering school and business school career resources.
What if I have no previous business experience? Will this be a problem for the team project?
Working as a team with at least one MBA student, the engineering student brings his/her technical skills to the project to complement the MBA students’ business knowledge.
I've never worked with MBAs before. Usually, engineers don’t have the same work experience or the same way of approaching problems. Is there anything in the Tauber Institute that facilitates this collaboration?
Through the LeadershipAdvantage modules, both business and engineering students learn how to effectively collaborate with teammates who come from a variety of backgrounds with a variety of skills and experience. Modules such as Communication for Team Effectiveness and Influencing Decision Making through Active Listening enhance students understanding of their own styles and the style of others and how to work most effectively with them.
What kind of industries and positions do Tauber engineers work in after graduation?
Depending on their interests, Tauber engineers take jobs with a variety of companies - traditional operations/manufacturing companies, consulting companies, and service industries. Some of the positions they accept include Regional Sourcing Manager, Continuous Improvement Manager, Inventory Planner, Consultant, Operations Analyst, and Supplier Development Engineer.
Do I apply to the Tauber Institute for a graduate engineering degree?
Since the Tauber Institute is not a degree-granting institute, you need to apply to a College of Engineering department (ISD) or Rackham Graduate School. In addition, also submit an application to the Tauber Institute (available at www.tauber.umich.edu). You must be admitted by a degree-granting program in order to be admitted into the Tauber Institute. Check with your department of interest for specific application requirements.
How many business school classes can I take as a Tauber student?
The number of business credits allowed for engineers are decided by your degree program requirements. For example, as a Master of Engineering in Manufacturing student, you are required to take a minimum of 9 credit hours in the Business School. With all other graduate engineering (and PhD students), you are required to take 6 credit hours of Business School electives (in addition to MFG 501, MFG 504, and MFG 605). It is the student’s obligation to ensure that the business classes are approved by their academic advisor.
Is it hard to get in/register for business school classes as an engineer?
You cannot automatically register online for Business School classes as an engineer. To register you need to get an override from the professor teaching the class. We advise that you contact the professor either beforehand or attend the first class and request an “override” form. For the most part, Business School professors are more than happy to sign overrides for Tauber engineering students.
How are engineers placed on Tauber Team Projects?
All Tauber students interview with 5-6 companies for a team project internship position. Each team is then staffed by running both student and company rankings (preferences) through a linear optimization model. This results in a team staffed with at least one Business student and one Engineering student (teams are made up of two or three students).
What types of engineers (disciplines) are suited for the Tauber Institute?
Practically any type of engineer who wants to understand the manufacturing/operations area of a business is well-suited for the Tauber program. With skills obtained from the Tauber Institute, for example, chemical engineers who understand the process of drug manufacture/delivery to customers are a valuable asset to pharmaceutical firms; a computer engineer familiar with the supply chain is valuable to a company who is programming controllers to run an automated operation; a mechanical engineer who understands how to bring a design from prototype to wide-scale production in the most cost-effective manner.
Can I apply for an MBA after being accepted into the Tauber Institute as an engineer?
If you satisfy the MBA requirements, you may apply to the Business School (see www.bus.umich.edu).
At what point in my (engineering) academic career do I complete the Tauber project?
EGL students typically complete their project during the summer between their senior and graduate year. Students in other graduate engineering programs complete the project over the summer following two semesters of study. For these students, the project becomes the culmination of their UM and Tauber experience.