Student listening during class and taking notes

Business Block

Why wait for graduate school to understand management? Furman can prepare you for a wide range of management positions through one of the most unique undergraduate programs in the nation: The Business Block.

Designed to provide our undergraduates with an integrated “MBA style” experience, the Business Block emphasizes a working knowledge of accounting, finance, marketing, and operations. But rather than taking four distinct courses, you will study each of these areas in a single, four-hour block that is taught five days a week.

As a sophomore, you will be able to apply for this unique program.  You may contact Dr. Virginia Gerde, department chair, for more information on the degree application process.

Program Structure

The issues that face current managers are rarely confined to one functional area of business. That is why we maintain that an integrative, interdisciplinary view of management is essential to effective decision making. This integrative structure will ensure that you have the analytical and strategic skills necessary to address real business problems. Unlike business majors at other schools, you will be able to confront issues from different perspectives and understand how, for example, a marketing decision can impact operations.

The Business Block is composed of four business courses that emphasize the core areas of management:

  • Accounting
  • Finance
  • Marketing
  • Operations

At Furman, these four courses are delivered in a unique format. Each day, the same student cohort will meet in the same classroom from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. This structure provides us the flexibility to put together a comprehensive set of cases, lectures, company visits, experiential exercises, integrated projects, and special seminars by career service professionals and business leaders.  The interwoven nature of these materials and practical experiential exercises are designed to develop students’ analytical and strategic abilities, enabling them to address real business problems.

Our faculty will guide you through the course and you will work closely with the same classmates on case studies, research, and group projects. Best of all, our program will prepare you to lead cross-functional teams—making you more attractive to potential employers.​

Taking a Holistic Approach

Business programs are often criticized for developing students who take a narrow approach to solving today’s complex management problems. In the Business Block, we’ll help you develop a more broad perspective.

Firmly grounded in the liberal arts tradition, our program is committed to preparing you for the global marketplace. Our curriculum is infused with topics in accountability, globalization, leadership and sustainability. By studying these four key concepts, you will be able to analyze and understand the environmental and social implications that every decision will have on your business.

Job Preparation

To enhance your development, our program includes professors from other disciplines as well as staff members with an expertise in career development. By taking you through a set of exercises and experiences designed to enhance your practical understanding of what it takes to succeed in business, these instructors will prepare you for the interview process, and help you develop the skills necessary to succeed in your professional endeavors. Here is a snapshot of what you’ll get:

  • Guidance in preparing a professional resume
  • An opportunity to evaluate your skills through self-assessment test
  • Tips on performing well in an interview
  • Expertise in how to develop a powerful presentation
  • Networking advice
  • A commitment to develop your team building and leadership skills
  • Extensive training in EXCEL
  • Certification at the basic level in using a Bloomberg terminal

As you develop these skills, you will construct a business skills portfolio to be evaluated by a team of professors. You will receive regular feedback about your basic coursework and performance in the business skills component of the program.