Financial Times names Miami Herbert MBA #1 in the world for teaching business law

Financial Times names Miami Herbert MBA #1 in the world for teaching business law

By Cibeles Duran

Financial Times names Miami Herbert MBA #1 in the world for teaching business law

By Cibeles Duran
The ranking, as voted by alumni, demonstates that graduates value the highly interactive classes, supplementary opportunities, and accessibility to faculty.

The Financial Times ranks the University of Miami’s Patti and Allan Herbert Business School as the leader among the world’s top ten MBA Schools for teaching law. Business schools worldwide were scored based on alumni responses to the publication’s full-time MBA survey earlier this year.

“I could not be prouder of our faculty. It is their bond with the students and their dedication to excellence that is being showcased here,” says Business Law Professor and Department Chair Patricia Abril, who also serves as the associate dean of the University's Graduate School and was vice dean of Miami Herbert's Graduate Business Programs during the time of the student survey. 

She emphasizes that small class sizes and access to Business Law faculty allow for meaningful faculty-student relationships and a support structure that helps boost student confidence and preparedness for any business career.

Reaching the top position on the global list is also a recognition of the School’s emphasis on teaching business law as an integral part of MBA training for today’s complex and highly regulated business environment.

“We teach students to think critically and strategically and to know the rules of the road,” Abril says. “We teach them to spot potential legal issues and to know when to call a lawyer and what questions to ask. That’s tremendously empowering for a businessperson.” 

The MBA curriculum includes core courses and electives that instill an understanding of the law within a business context. As business is replete with scenarios without a specified “right” answer, all MBA students take Law and Ethics to learn how to reach decisions they can justify through sound moral and legal reasoning. The class further helps them discover a clearer perspective on their career goals and purpose. Miami Herbert’s business law faculty also deliver Communicating for Career Success, in which students sharpen critical thinking and communication skills with a focus on business problem solving. Business law electives in the MBA curriculum include corporate governance and navigating international legal and regulatory systems.

The Department’s highly interactive and discussion-based classes often feature guest speakers and leaders like high-profile judges, lawyers, CEOs, and compliance officers, giving students exposure to headline stories and real-life events.

“All of our courses aim to hone their ability to think and communicate on the spot, to get out of a boxed mental frame and think creatively, and to incorporate law to surpass potential hurdles in the strategies of their businesses. Leveraging our law faculty’s experience with industry issues, students really get a boots-on-the-ground perspective on business,” Abril states.

Beyond classes, related clubs and competitions provide further opportunities to explore the interconnections between law and business. This year, two Miami Herbert teams associated with the Ethics Society achieved first-place honors and runner-up honors at the International Business Ethics and Sustainability Case Competition (IBESCC), a prestigious annual contest in which undergraduate and graduate students from around the world propose solutions to pressing ethical issues in global business.

Additionally, MBA students enjoy access to a free compliance boot camp offered by the Department every January. For two weeks, students meet every day for a deep dive into a compliance-related career path with a trajectory towards the role of chief compliance officer. Professionals in sought-after positions in the area ensure that their companies follow industry-specific regulations. The boot camp turns out well-versed students who are prepared to interview for compliance positions.

The MBA program’s focus on business law also helps shape the career paths of future entrepreneurs, people involved in family businesses, and those who will enter highly regulated industries such as banking.

“Everyone doing business should understand the importance of being conversational in the legal system and the law,” the associate dean emphasizes.

Receiving the most alumni votes for the title of best business school in the area of law in the Financial Times’ global list suggests that Miami Herbert’s business law faculty largely achieve their goal. Graduates show that they value the knowledge gained and the skills to face ethical challenges and to seek critical legal advice at relevant moments during their careers.

Abril mentions that attaining the top spot means that the challenge continues.

“While we’re celebrating it, we are cognizant that our task every day is to serve new sets of students and keep a #1 ranking in their minds as well,” she says.