A Closer Look at the Origins of our On Campus and Online Master’s Degrees


Master's degree student at Granite State College.

Shelia’s employer strongly encouraged her to further her education to strengthen as a manager. Rob Fishwick, a respiratory therapist at a local hospital, wants to be part of the solution to the complex, evolving issues surrounding health care. Elizabeth Lathrop was excited to expand her professional portfolio and she found it invigorating to be back in the classroom.

It’s the classic Granite State College student story: “I need a degree to get ahead.”

What makes Shelia, Rob, and Elizabeth special is that they were each pursuing their master’s degree, a reflection of the evolving needs of the contemporary adult student.

Up until 2011, Granite State was fully focused on undergraduate programs. Today, we offer a selection of professionally-focused graduate degrees and we’re excited to build our programs. Here’s some background about the evolution of our master’s degree programs and what it means to be among the nation’s top online graduate programs.

Inside the Launch of Project Management

When introducing graduate programs to Granite State College, we carefully considered our options and chose to offer the state’s very first master’s in Project Management because of its ability to develop high-level skills in a wide range of professional fields.

We didn’t want to be duplicative or redundant. Rather, we wanted to be responsive to our state’s workforce and deliver them the skills and credentials they need to strengthen their careers and job prospects. Ultimately, the master’s degree program is closely aligned with the Granite State College mission: accessible, useful, innovative, and responsive.

One of our very first Project Management graduates once shared that he chose Granite State College because it had so many facets within his career in health care management that he could apply in his everyday working environment. That’s the exact outcome we want for our graduate students.

The Next Step: Leadership

When the College was ready to expand and start its second program, Leadership was a natural fit. The program supports an action-learning model that gives students the opportunity to apply concepts and achieve measurable results in a way that connects core professional competencies to actual projects. The goal of the masters of leadership program is to create a transformative education experience that develops a personal brand of leadership, leverages the interdisciplinary backgrounds of the students, and builds versatile leadership abilities.


A New Addition: Management

The M.S. in Management was our third master’s program. It presents a continued focus on workforce demands and maximizing career possibilities for students.

Research shows that an individual with a bachelor’s degree in a content-specific area has limitations when they try to achieve a management position. To help address this gap, this program delivers a high-level, global perspective of management essentials and heavily emphasizes a full comprehension of management demands. This empowers students to meet challenges and advance their own careers.


Expanded Opportunities: Nursing and Health Care Management

Granite State College has a health care advisory board comprised of the region’s top health care employers. When asked what they need from a workforce perspective, their answer was clear: strong managers and nurses. Through collaboration, the M.S. in Health Care Management and Master’s in Nursing were created to answer these employers important call-to-action.

Recognition from U.S. News and World Report

Since the launch of our graduate programs, they’ve consistently been named to the U.S. News and World Report best online graduate business degrees.

Each day, we see and experience how the average college student is challenged by expensive tuition rates – a predicament that’s always a top concern for working adults. This drives our students to look at affordable online institutions, like Granite State College, and being recognized among the nation’s best by U.S. News & World Report is a special honor.


The Future of Graduate Studies at Granite State College

We identify what students are looking for and align their goals with what is going to add the most value to the workforce development goals of New Hampshire. This is where we’ve found our identity as an institution and where we’ll carve out our niche moving forward.

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