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What Harvard’s Joint MS/MBA Degree Program Is Like

For those interested in pursuing a career in the life sciences post grad, a dual MS/MBA degree may be enticing.

The MS/MBA joint degree offers students with a life science background the opportunity to develop strong business knowledge in their career post-grad. At Harvard, the joint MS/MBA program can be completed over two academic years and students get access to world-renowned faculty and resources in Harvard Business School, the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and Harvard Medical School.

Nora Rabah, an MS/MBA joint degree candidate at Harvard Business School, recently highlighted the key things applicants should know about Harvard’s MS/MBA joint degree program in a blog post for MBA Voices.


One of the key characteristics of Harvard’s joint MS/MBA program, according to Rabah, is the diversity in students’ backgrounds. Rabah notes that in her cohort of 11, students have a variety of experiences that benefit the learning environment.

“A few people, including myself, did come from a biotechnology company, but there were also people from life sciences consulting firms, research laboratories, medical device companies and larger pharmaceutical companies,” she writes. “This diversity is especially important for our small group cohort where we heavily draw from each other’s experiences and maintain a tight-knit community from which we can learn every day.”


Passion for the health care and life sciences is strong in Harvard’s joint MS/MBA program. But that doesn’t mean that students aren’t open-minded.

“Although the entirety of my cohort is unified by our passion for healthcare and our strong interest in life sciences, we also are eager to explore various roles in the health care industry,” Rabah writes. “I have not met one person who isn’t open to learning more about different subsections in healthcare, such as health tech, start-ups, pharmaceutical policy and more.”


Students in the MS/MBA program at Harvard truly get the MBA experience at Harvard.

In fact, the majority of the first year’s curriculum is dedicated to the MBA.

“You are a part of a section, you have an MBA email and are included in all of the MBA-wide student events,” Rabah writes. “I did not feel like I had missed out on anything – on the contrary, starting the MS a few weeks before starting the MBA felt like a gain.”

Sources: MBA Voices, Harvard Business School

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