Be ready for what comes next.

Glen Roebuck wasn’t sure how he’d fare entering Iowa’s Professional MBA program after a long-time career in healthcare. But being 20 years older than the average student didn’t hold him back a bit.

By embracing Tippie’s hybrid online and classroom course formats, this 55-year-old is on track to earn his MBA in 2020 and ready to take on any unanticipated career changes that come his way.

Taking the leap

In spite of having a high-level career at one of the area’s premier healthcare employers, Glen Roebuck, Executive Director of Home, Outpatient and Senior Services at Genesis Health System resists the urge to coast to retirement. Instead, he’s staying at the top of his game with the Iowa MBA.

“The number one reason men over 50 change their jobs is because it’s not their idea,” he laughs. To prepare himself for whatever the future holds, Glen enrolled in the University of Iowa’s Professional MBA program – and decided to foot the bill himself.

“Two things drew me to Iowa’s part-time MBA program: flexibility and convenience.”

Although his company paid for his first course, Glen declined any further financial support, reasoning that the nurses at Genesis were in greater need.

“Healthcare has a  shortage of nurses, and we did a lot of recruiting with scholarship support. Every class that Genesis covered for me was a nurse not getting that opportunity,” he says.

Back in business

Although Glen admits that at times he felt like “a fossil in the room” while earning his MBA, he ultimately embraced the opportunity to learn at the cutting edge of both classroom technology and modern business curriculum. He reached out to his millennial classmates for advice and collaboration, and embraced new educational technology – especially his online courses.

“I loved being in a class full of millennials, because for the next 10-15 years I will be working with them,” he explains. “Sure, their values may be different than mine — but they’re probably a lot healthier!”

Initially, Glen expected the online courses to be more “low value” than those he took in-person. But he was immediately surprised by their quality and format. And, he learned to navigate the virtual classroom with ease.

“At first, I didn’t see how small group discussion could work online. But then all of a sudden I was in a private group with five colleagues— just as if we pulled into a corner of the classroom,” he says.

From branded slideshow presentations to recorded lectures with coordinated reading assignments, Glen found his remote classes as engaging and informative as his in-person experiences.

“The online courses were exceptionally well-done. I loved that I could catch the recorded 15 minute lectures whenever I could make it work. The way the classes were structured was excellent.”

The takeaway

While he’s already landed the dream job that most PMBA graduates hope for, Glen knows that he’ll have a much better chance of retaining a high-level position with the Iowa MBA credential on his resume. 

“Healthcare is in a time of tremendous transition,” he explains, “I’m doing a job that was held by three different executives five years ago. I don’t expect that trend to slow down.” Rather than waiting for organizational changes to impact his career, Glen is charging ahead and preparing for whatever comes next.

“I don’t anticipate my MBA will land me another jump up the ladder, but what it will do is give me more stability, a deeper knowledge of business performance and leaderhip and a better way to present myself,” he says.

His advice for those considering the Professional MBA program? “Don’t wait until you’re 50 to do this,” he says, “because someday you’re going to need it.”