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Specialized MBA Student Projects

The CSUSM College of Business Administration Specialized MBA program (SMBA) is a full time 15 month program designed for recent business and non-business major graduates interested in pursuing advanced business education. SMBA student projects commence in June and are completed in August.

SMBA Students Profile 

Average Age of SMBA student is 27

SMAB students have an average of 5.5 years of work experience

SMBA students have an average of 1.8 years of management experience 


SMBA Students industry background


*Data is based is based on the graduating cohorts of 2017 and 2018. View Accessible SMBA Stats.

MBA Project Advisors

Hedayat Alibeiki, Ph.D.

Hedayat Alibeiki, Ph.D
Assistant Professor
Operations and Supply Chain Management

Dr. Alibeiki is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Operations and Supply Chain Management. He received his Ph.D. in Operations Management from McGill University in 2017. Before joining California State University San Marcos, he taught Operations Management at undergraduate level. He worked as a data specialist in John Hancock/ Manulife and also served as operations consultant in financial and healthcare sectors.

His research interests include Game Theory and Mechanism Design in Supply Chain Management as well as Healthcare Analytics. He is an active member of INFORMS (Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences) and has presented his research at INFORMS, POMS (Production and Operations Management Society), CORS (Canadian Operations Research Society) Annual Meetings.


Eric Rhodes

Eric Rhodes, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Dept. Chair Global Business Management
Eric Rhodes is Director of Global Business Management and Assistant Professor of Management in the College of Business Administration at California State University San Marcos.  He earned his PhD in Business Administration from the University of Hawaii at Manoa, his J.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and his B.A. from Appalachian State University.  His research examines how organizations communicate, strategize, and adapt in a rapidly changing global business environment.  Dr. Rhodes has published in business and social psychology journals, presented his research at conferences in North America, Asia, and Europe, and has more than a decade of international business and legal experience in China and Southeast Asia. He has been an active member of the California bar since 1999, speaks fluent Mandarin Chinese, and enjoys competing in iron-distance triathlons.  

Nima Zaerpour

Nima Zaerpour, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Operations and Supply Chain Management

Dr. Nima Zaerpour is an assistant professor of Operations and Supply Chain Management. He received his PhD in Operations Management from Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University, the Netherlands in 2013. Prior to joining California State University, Dr. Zaerpour was an assistant professor at VU University Amsterdam. In addition, he has had visiting positions at the School of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Georgia Tech and the School of Management, University of Science and Technology of China.

His research has been published in leading journals among others are Production and Operations Management, Transportation Science, IIE Transactions, European Journal of Operational Research, and International Journal of Production Research. His research interests are Facility Logistics Management, Distribution Logistics Management, Supply Chain Management, and Terminal Operations Management; in particular studying recent innovations in these areas. He serves as a reviewer for top tier journals such as Operations Research, Production and Operations Management, Transportation Science, IIE Transactions, Interfaces, Transportation Research Part E, International Journal of Production Research, International Journal of Production Economics. He has developed Warehousing Decision Support tools and has served as consultant for Supply Chain and Logistics companies.


Interest Form   Submit a Project Proposal