An Educated Workforce

MSU’s most valuable contribution to the state’s economy is an educated workforce that attracts, promotes, and retains higher paying jobs in Montana. With a fall 2010 enrollment of more than 13,000, MSU serves citizens throughout the state, preparing students to become productive in their communities.

Business Assistance Programs

In addition to educating students, MSU offers an abundance of business assistance programs and resources in all disciplines that help Montana companies succeed. From manufacturing expertise to new technology licenses, and from start-ups to expansion, MSU offers support to all companies.

Economic Impact

MSU is an integral and significant portion of Montana’s economy. With a presence in every county across the state, ongoing research that drives new innovations, and a commitment to provide education that empowers all Montanans, MSU advances the economic health of Montana.


Center for Entrepreneurship for the New West

The Alderson Program in Entrepreneurship is located in the Center for Entrepreneurship for the New West. More than 400 students enrolled in these classes have provided over 12,000 hours of pro-bono business analysis. More than 60 firms in the Bozeman area (and around Montana) have participated.

David B. Orser Executive Speakers Forum

The David B. Orser Executive Speakers Forum brings accomplished and inspiring professionals to the College of Business to deliver large, open-forum lectures and to share their expertise and experience with students in the classroom. David B. Orser, a 1966 MSU graduate, began funding the program in 1988 to inspire MSU business students to pursue careers as innovative, responsible and ethical business leaders. Distinguished guest speakers have included Jonathan Howlett, Director of Advertising for BBC Worldwide, Alan Rypinski, founder of Armor All and World Pog Foundation, and Ian B. Davidson, chairman of Davidson Companies and D.A. Davidson & Co.

Family Business Program

Established in 1994 as an outreach program through the College of Business, The Family Business Program offers education and information to the backbone of many Montana businesses, those who own and manage family-run businesses. The annual seminar and awards luncheon, usually held in September, has reached out to hundreds of businesses and provided education and fact based information to thousands of participants.
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MilTech is an Office of Technology Transition Partnership Intermediary and provides hands-on product design, prototyping and manufacturing assistance to transition innovative technology to the US warfighter rapidly, reliably, and cost-effectively. MilTech provides assistance to companies that demonstrate demand from Department of Defense to deliver innovative technology to deployed combat operations.

Mobility and Public Transportation program

In rural and frontier areas, transit is often critically needed to provide mobility for those who lack access to basic services (grocery store, medical care, education, etc.). However, despite the critical need, public agencies have traditionally considered transit systems to be unfeasible and unaffordable in areas with such low population density. The Western Transportation Institute’s Mobility and Public Transportation program has helped a growing number of rural areas and small communities create or expand public transit options by identifying innovative ways to coordinate services.

Montana Manufacturing Extension Center

The Montana Manufacturing Extension Center is a statewide manufacturing outreach and assistance center staffed by full-time professionals with degrees in engineering and extensive experience in manufacturing and business in a variety of industries. Expertshelp Montana manufacturers increase profits by improving business processes and planning for growth. Whether it's Lean Manufacturing, Quality Systems, HACCP Planning for food safety, Cost Analysis, Better Decision Tools or Growth Strategies, MMEC technical assistance & workforce training improves quality, productivity, and global competitiveness.

MSU Extended University

Extended University promotes lifelong learning and exploration of new ideas and methods for learning to enrich education and improve quality of life. By utilizing technology, mobilizing the rich resources of our campus and extended community, and forging partnerships, Extended University helps students of all ages take advantage of the learning opportunities that great instruction and emerging technologies make possible. Training opportunities include: Business/Entrepreneurship, Leadership, Computers & Software, Graphics/Multimedia, Health & Fitness, Customized Training, contact (406) 994-6683 or Technology Services include: videoconferencing, webinars, contact (406) 994-6550 or ExtendedU@montana.edu

MSU Extension Community Development

Provides educational and research-based resources to strengthen the social, economic and environmental well-being of communities across the state. Specifically, the Program involves many areas including community strategic visioning, local governance, leadership development training, community tourism assessment and development, economic and business development, community profiling, conflict management and resolution, economic impact assessments, planning facilitation, and community surveys.

Gallatin College at MSU

The mission of Gallatin College is to be responsive to the educational and workforce needs of the Gallatin Valley by developing, delivering, and continually improving quality educational programs and services which will allow individuals to achieve their goals and create opportunities that will enrich their lives.

Gallatin College Industry Advisory Boards

Gallatin College maintains industry specific advisory boards to provide input in program development, curriculum development and job placements for graduates. The Gallatin College Advisory Board, the Interior Design Advisory Board, the Aviation Advisory Board, the Design Drafting Advisory Board and the Healthcare Advisory Board are examples of this valuable resource.

MSU Local Government Center

Each year the Local Government Center and its partners conduct an array of on- and off-campus seminars and professional certification workshops. Trainings include one-time and recurring seminars, workshops, and professional certification programs that serve more than 500 local officials annually. Participants include the following local government officials and employees: Mayors, County Commissioners, Clerks of District Court, County Treasurers, Council Members, Municipal Clerks, Treasurers, & Finance Officers, Attorneys and Department Heads.

MSU Management Institute

The Management Institute Executive Education series was launched fall 2008 in response to local business leaders’ requests to provide high quality executive education and professional development opportunities. The program now offers executive education for entrepreneurs, businesses and organizations in Montana and the Rocky Mountain West.

Montana State Online

Montana State Online supports a growing number and variety of online undergraduate courses, professional development opportunities, and graduate certificate and degree programs. It boasts one of the oldest and most established network of online graduate science courses,The National Teachers Enhancement Network (NTEN). Montana State Online is developed and supported by Montana State University, Extended University. Contact (406) 994-6550 or distance@montana.edu

MSU TechLink Center

TechLink’s two-fold purpose is (1) to promote technology-based economic development by forging productive partnerships between federal research labs and the private sector, and (2) to increase the technology transfer successes of its federal sponsors. TechLink achieves economic development by helping the private sector to successfully access technology, expertise, and R&D funding opportunities in federal labs. Specific activities include helping companies and entrepreneurs to: License and commercialize federally developed technologies; Develop new technology in partnership with federal labs nationwide; Secure R&D funding from the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program and other competitive federal programs; Launch new companies around cutting-edge technologies from federal labs. TechLink helps companies and entrepreneurs to find new technology, collaborative projects, and R&D funding opportunities in federal labs; evaluate these opportunities, such as by providing market research; and develop strong license applications, project work plans, or competitive proposals.

MSU Technology Transfer Office

The Technology Transfer Office (TTO) at MSU has been named the point of entry for companies searching for resources within the University. That includes consultants, services and equipment. The TTO also is the entity responsible for licensing MSU technologies and working with start-up companies to access technologies within the University.

Pro Bono Consulting Classes

Through the Alderson Entrepreneur Program and the Jake Jabs Center for Entrepreneurship for the New West, College of Business students have the opportunity to assist local and state-wide businesses and organizations. More than 350 students have contributed over 12,000 hours of pro bono business analysis with organizations and businesses such as the Bozeman Public Library, the Gallatin Valley Land Trust, Junior Achievement, Shakespeare in the Parks, The Ellen Theater, Town Pump and the Yellowstone Basin Inn.
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UTAP - University Technical Assistance Program

Since September 1986 hundreds of Montana manufacturers have benefited from assistance by engineers employed by the University Technical Assistance Program (UTAP) at Montana State University while they worked on advanced degrees in Industrial and Management Engineering from Montana State University. UTAP engineers lend their knowledge and research skills to economic development in the state while gaining real-world experience in manufacturing and business management issues.

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program

Each year, College of Business accounting majors prepare tax returns for students and community members through the national VITA program. The program has two goals: to provide free tax preparation services for people making less than $40,000, while giving aspiring accountants practice in their profession. More than 450 returns are usually filed. A small group of students also travel to remote regions in Alaska through this program to file returns for the native population who wouldn't otherwise have these resources to assist them with preparing their tax returns. This year, four accounting students volunteered, filing more than 250 returns.

Women’s Circle of Excellence

The College of Business’ Women’s Circle of Excellence (WCOE) was created fall 2006. This group’s mission is to enhance and enrich the lives of alumnae, associates and friends by opening doors for mentoring and networking, while creating educational and inspirational opportunities for women by women. In 2010, the WCOE partnered with Prospera and the Women’s Business Center to further reach more women across the state and nation. More information: