The first two years in the Ph.D. program at the School of Business at Stevens may be the most exciting, as they mark the beginning of a new experience and hold the promise of a career in academia or in a research-oriented organization. In many respects, these first two years are also the most challenging. The pace of the coursework is brisk, and expectations — both of students and faculty — are high. The Ph.D. educational process is very autonomous, requiring personal goal setting, self-motivation and application to hard work. For many, it is also a year of adapting to changes: new friends, a new university, a new city and, for some, a new culture and climate.

During the first two years of study at Stevens, Ph.D. students develop a foundation in management theory, microeconomics, computational methods and research methods. At the end of the second year of full-time study, students take a qualifying examination assessing mastery of the core topics covered in the first two years.