bunch of stuff falling into a funnel
Friday, June 8, 2018
Lesanne B. Fliehler

On the lunar-solar Chinese calendar, 2018 is the year of the dog, but around the Tippie College of Business, 2018 may just become known as the year of business analytics.

The college has:

  • opened a Part-time Master of Business Analytics Program (including a graduate certificate) in Des Moines, Cedar Rapids, and the Quad Cities;
  • created the Tippie Analytics Cooperative, which provides undergraduate students the chance to solve real, data-based problems for businesses;
  • convened a new Tippie Analytics Cooperative Advisory Council, whose business representatives provide a critical piece of insight into the fast-changing corporate environment of data science; and
  • announced the on-campus Full-time Master of Business Analytics Program, a three-semester program that begins this fall.

The changes and additional programming at Tippie come at a time when there is a significant shortage of talent with these specialized skills. According to recent LinkedIn research, statistical analysis and data mining plus data presentation were the top-10 skills in demand from business. While companies have relied on statistics to make business decisions for years, massive strides in the collection and storage of data have transformed analytics into a central business function.

Analytics jobs are the hottest career in business, growing at nearly five times the rate of other jobs, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The Tippie College of Business has long been taking steps to position itself as a top-five program in business analytics and information systems, which includes the recent hiring of Patrick Fan from Virginia Tech, who joins the faculty this fall as a professor and the Henry B. Tippie Chair in Business Analytics.

“We have some of the top data scientists, mathematicians, and optimization gurus in the country who are working in a business college,” says Nick Street, the Henry B. Tippie Research Professor of Business Analytics and department executive officer. “We have a critical mass of business analytics faculty members who have the expertise to expand our programming and who are continuing to add to the research knowledge in our field and to the department’s outreach mission.”

Enrollment in the programs has exploded. The numbers this spring include:

  • Part-time Master’s in Business Analytics & Certificate: 259
  • Undergraduate majors in Business Analytics & Information Systems: 315 (87 enrolled five years ago)


Business analytics is about solving problems with vast amounts of data businesses gather. Learn to turn data into decisions and earn a master’s in three semesters. This STEM-designated program includes job search support, coaching, and employer connections through Tippie’s graduate career services team. Open to all majors, but a quantitative background is desired. Learn more: tippie.uiowa.edu/full-time-msba.