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MSU's Distance MBA Graduate to Direct Launch of Univ. of North Dakota's First Satellite

8-2-16 - If all goes according to plan, the University of North Dakota will launch its first satellite in December, and while more than 100 students and faculty have participated in this landmark project, the man entrusted with putting it all together is Jeremy Straub.

Straub, a Michigan native, has four degrees -- undergraduate degrees in business and information technology from Excelsior College in New York, along with a PhD. he completed in May at the University of North Dakota.

But it may not be putting too fine a point on the matter to say the degree he earned through Mississippi State University may have served him best as he coordinated and planned the work for the project, which began in 2012.

No doubt, he said, the MBA he earned at MSU has aided him in the myriad management responsibilities of UND's satellite program.

Straub, 35, completed MBA in 2010 through MSU's distance education program. He then headed to North Dakota, where he began leading the satellite program as he pursued his PhD.

The craft is due to be handed over to NASA in October for a December launch to the International Space Station and deployment into Earth's orbit early next year.

That Straub's educational journey wound through Starkville -- at least virtually -- was a testament to the confidence built in the university's MBA program before he enrolled. With no natural connection to MSU, Straub said his decision to pursue his MBA there was due to it being a well-organized program backed by informed staff.

"When I was considering an MBA program, I really focused my attention on the structure of the programs and the thing that really stood out, that I really liked at Mississippi State, was that when I called, they were able to answer my questions so clearly. A lot of the other programs gave me vague, ambiguous answers. But Mississippi State was very specific in their responses. I knew right then that was the mark of a well-organized and designed program."

Straub's story is a familiar one to those in the MSU business program.

"It is not a surprise to me to hear that one of our distance master's of business administration graduates is leading such a successful venture," said Cindy Smith, director for Distance and Executive Education at MSU. "Our MBA program includes high performing students from all over the United States and the world, representing many types of businesses and industry. We are so proud of Jeremy."

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