Salman Hasan: The Online MBA at SMU Cox was the Right Fit at the Right Time

Hear from Salman Hasan, an online MBA student at SMU Cox, and learn how the flexible online program helped him balance school, work, and family life.

A group of SMU Cox online MBA faculty and students at a presentation

This blog post was originally published in February 2020, and was revised in June 2023.

After years of considering what might be the best MBA program for him, Salman Hasan chose the Online MBA from SMU Cox.

SMU was the Best Fit

Put simply, Sal knew that SMU Cox was the right choice. “SMU was the best fit for me,” said Sal. He pointed to the university’s culture, diversity and mission. He grew up in Dallas, so he already knew about SMU Cox’s stellar reputation as a Dallas area university with extensive graduate programs. But he said he’d always been adamant that when it came time to pursue an MBA, it would be in a traditional format: on campus. However, he lives in Phoenix. Both he and his wife work full time and they have a two-year-old daughter. He really wanted to attend SMU Cox, but it didn’t seem possible. Then, the admissions team introduced him to its new Online MBA program. It was brand new, but it offered the same quality program as the Cox School’s renowned on-campus MBA. “It was perfect,” said Sal.

“All the pieces fit,” said Sal. “I have time for it. The company I’m with is willing to be flexible in how I schedule my hours and they even offer tuition reimbursement. This was the right time—and SMU Cox was the right place. I’m in the very first cohort and now that I’m in it, I still feel great about my decision. Even in other top MBA programs, their online professors are sometimes a separate faculty. Here, the same instructors who teach on campus are teaching online. They’re wonderful professors and the coursework is very in-depth and hands-on. I feel as if I’m not missing anything I’d get in a full-time on-campus program experience. I feel like I’m getting the one-on-one attention and interactions with classmates and professors. Aside from being physically on-campus, I’m not missing anything.”

Bringing SMU Cox Online MBA Lessons into the Real World

A headshot of SMU Cox online MBA student, Salman Hasan

Another benefit to the unique structure of the SMU Cox’s Online MBA is that Sal has been able to immediately put to use what he learns in his program. “I’m learning a lot and I’m simultaneously applying it to what I do at work,” said Sal. Currently Sal works as a Health Specialist for Accolade, Inc. in Scottsdale, AZ. He works with healthcare professionals across the country and has implemented new processes to collect patient and medical data and convert them into better care delivery for suppliers, healthcare providers and patients. He said that the Online MBA program has already taught him more about managing people. “I’ve learned more in a single semester than in my entire undergraduate experience. Undergrad was theoretical and difficult to see how what we learned might be applied. Now, I’m learning and doing. Especially about managing and leading people, what I learn I can immediately bring to my job and apply it in the real world.”

Recommending the SMU Cox Online MBA to Others

Sal noted that everyone at SMU Cox seems passionate about the Online MBA program. He said he feels that the staff and faculty really just want what’s best for the individual student. “It’s obvious that everyone in the program—instructors, advisors—just want you to succeed,” said Sal. “They’re very supportive.” Sal also said that he would “110% recommend the program,” and he also offered advice to future students. According to Sal, you should “make sure that everyone, your family, colleagues, friends, all know you’re in the program. Tell your supervisor. Let your family know when an assignment is due.” Sal said that his family has been very supportive and it’s been a significant help. He also reminded new students to be sure to stay healthy. “It sounds obvious, but you need to be physical and mentally well so you can do your work and your schoolwork well,” said Sal.

If you’d like to learn more about the Online MBA at SMU Cox, Sal is one of the program's ambassadors. He said he’s happy to help prospective students learn more about the program. Click the Request Info button and someone from our Admissions team will be happy to answer your questions or tell you how you can connect with Sal.