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Academic Experience

In SIGM, learning takes place in and outside the classroom through a rigorous academic schedule, professional development workshops, and networking opportunities with leaders from a wide range of industries.


Many courses are taught using the case method, the same process used in Stanford MBA courses. Participants work on team projects and have small-group discussions that encourage diverse perspectives.

All SIGM sessions are taught by the same faculty who teach in the Stanford MBA Program. The core curriculum covers eight functional areas of business and assume no previous coursework in business-related subjects.

Core Areas Topics of Study
Finance How does a business raise capital to finance its goals and objectives?
Accounting How do companies use cost data and financial information to inform business practices?
Statistics How do companies use data to make key decisions about the future of their business?
Economics What are the market and industry forces impacting a business and how do companies plan for these forces? How does a firm make it’s pricing and product decisions?
Operations How do businesses create products and services, and ensure their delivery to market in a timely and efficient manner?
Strategy How does a business sustain its advantage over others with which it competes? How does it create and maintain a strong culture that feeds into its competitive advantage?
Talent Management What strategies do companies use to recruit, train, reward and retain quality employees?
Marketing How does a company identify its target markets and develop strategies for how to best reach them?
Functional Areas Topics of Study
Negotiation What are the tools businesses use to resolve differences, as well as to create and allocate resources to their best advantage?
Ethics How do businesses resolve conflict fairly and efficiently?
Organizational Behavior How do businesses assess their culture and use it to their advantage? How does companies foster teamwork?
Leadership What are the key strategies for successful leaders?

Professional Development

Participants attend workshops on resume writing, clarifying career goals, job search strategies, interviewing techniques, and public speaking. These workshops equip participants with the skills and information they need to get the jobs and internships they want.

Distinguished Speakers

SIGM offers participants networking opportunities with professionals from prominent Bay Area companies operating in a variety of industries. Business and nonprofit leaders with experience at companies such as Kiva, McKinsey & Company, Google Capital, Stella & Dot, Gilt Groupe, LinkedIn, and Francis Coppola Winery have been guest speakers during SIGM.

A Day in SIGM

Days typically begin with class sessions lasting until early afternoon, followed by professional development workshops and presentations from leading companies.

You can expect to spend two to three hours a day outside of class on homework, studying individually or in groups, and working on group projects. Readings and case studies must be completed before group meetings and class sessions so you can actively participate.