MS in Organizational Leadership

The world is constantly changing. Don't be a follower. Be a leader.

Many professionals have already launched successful careers and established their technical expertise in a particular field. The next career challenge is to move beyond technical expertise and develop the necessary knowledge and skills to address your organization’s challenges. The MSOL degree prepares professionals by emphasizing change management, team leadership, communication, and culture development skills. 

Potential career pathways and salaries include leadership positions in:

  • Computer and information systems
  • Management analytics
  • Training and development
  • Nonprofit
  • Health care
  • Human resources
  • Project management
msol hr manager job projection
msol social and community service managers - job projection
msol training and development managers - job projection
msol postsecondary education administrators - job projection
msol administrative services managers - job projection

What is Organizational Leadership?

Management is about coping with complexity. Leadership, by contrast, is about coping with change. Part of the reason leadership has become so important in recent years is that the business world has become more competitive and more volatile. 

Organizational leadership is a field of study within business management that focuses on the human side of business with coursework covering organizational behavior, leadership development, culture change, coaching, and personal and professional growth.  Students learn ways in which highly functional organizations operate and the role that strong leaders play in contributing to this success. Strong leaders understand group dynamics, ethical decision-making, change management, and the political nuances of organizations.

Why Should I Get an MS Degree in Organizational Leadership?

Possessing a graduate degree in business will open up many doors. Upper-level professional opportunities often require a graduate degree to be considered for the position. The MS in Organizational Leadership program will uniquely prepare you for these positions. The program shows you how to use teamwork to solve complex problems that businesses and other groups face.

You will learn to focus on ways to inspire and motivate those with whom you work when you have a role as a leader. Businesses are always innovating and adapting to a changing world. The HFU organizational leadership program will allow you to help a company transition individuals and whole organizations to meet new industry trends and developments as they happen. You will have the chance to develop the components that are crucial to a management position.

The program is unique in several ways, including:

  • A Blended Delivery Mode: Classes are offered in 8-week terms and students only meet face-to-face in two of those weeks. Face-to-face meetings are held on Saturdays at our Northeast Philadelphia campus. This is ideal for busy, working professionals located in Baltimore, NYC, and Harrisburg. Lodging is available at the Holiday Inn Express, located 1 mile from our Northeast Philadelphia campus.
  • Examples of this coursework include:
    • Strategic Management & Planning for the Healthcare Organization
    • Leadership Ethics and Corporate Governance
  • Fast Completion: The program can be completed in just over one-and-a-half calendar years.

What are the goals of the MSOL program?

Graduating students of the Master of Science in Organizational Leadership program will be able to:

  1. Distinguish between multiple approaches to exercising leadership in order to harness collective talent, promote innovation and confront complex issues within organizations.
  2. Interpret organizational dynamics, group dynamics and engage in systems thinking in order to promote the development of a learning organization capable of orchestrating conflict, creating innovation, and adaptation.
  3. Evaluate ethical issues and aid organizational members in creating an ethical culture appropriate to the organizational and/or global arena that supports operating in environments of diversity, uncertainty, and unpredictability.
  4. Distinguish between the functions of authority or power and the understanding of leadership and be able to apply diverse leadership skills, utilize frameworks in order to serve organizational purposes.
  5. Apply principles of organizational leadership and human capital management to the healthcare industry.


Core Courses (Required 9 courses  - 27 credits)

Course Title
Themes for Success in the Organization
Strategic Human Resources Management
Talent Management and Workforce Planning
Leadership and Change Management
Operations Analysis
Organizational Communication
Leadership, Ethics, and Corporate Governance
Organizational Development and Design

Capstone Course (Required 1 course - 3 credits)

Course Title
BUS 565 Leadership Seminar


Comprehensive Examination

Why should you choose HFU for your MS in Organizational Leadership degree?

Our value is recognized nationally. Money® named us a 2017-18  and 2018-19 Best College and ranked Holy Family University as a value all-star for three years running. In 2015, The Economist ranked us #11 in the nation for economic value, while NPR ranked us a top 50 school in the nation for upward mobility. In 2016, The Chronicle of Higher Education ranked us #10 in the nation for colleges with the best salary outcomes.

More Degree Options

If the MSOL is not what you’re looking for, we also offer the following graduate degree programs:

Application Requirements

  • Educational preparation: Evidence of completion of a regionally-accredited U.S. bachelor’s degree or its 4-year international equivalent. A minimum grade-point average (GPA) of 3.0 in undergraduate degree is required.
  • Experience: A current résumé detailing your professional experience, education, awards, publications, volunteer activities, etc. Applicants should typically have between 3-5 years of professional work experience to benefit fully from the program.
  • Admission essay (approximately 500 words), stating your purpose for undertaking graduate studies, your personal and professional goals, and how participation in the Master of Science in Organizational Leadership program will help you attain those goals.
  • Transcripts from all colleges attended.

How does an MS in Organizational Leadership differ from an MBA?

MBA coursework typically emphasizes the functional areas of business – e.g. marketing, accounting, finance, HR, operations management, etc. Coursework in economics and statistics is also quite common among MBA curricula, and there are usually supplementary courses in organizational behavior, leadership, and/or strategy. Given the structure of most MBA curricula, an MBA degree seems especially well-suited for those trying to launch a career in a functional area of business (e.g. marketing or accounting or finance) or for those positions responsible for the full range of business functions (e.g., the role of an entrepreneur).

Nonetheless, many folks have already launched successful careers and established their technical expertise in a particular field (e.g. biology, history, or marketing). Their career challenge is to move beyond that technical expertise to assume increasing levels of managerial responsibility and to demonstrate greater leadership in an organization. The MSOL degree excels here by emphasizing management, leadership, communication, and managerial skills.

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