Northwood University to Offer Franchising Management Degree in Fall 2013

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The Franchising Management major is a unique curriculum that combines courses pertaining to franchising as well as entrepreneurship, management and marketing.

MIDLAND, MI – Consistent with its mission of developing the future leaders of a global, free-enterprise society, Northwood University is offering a new major for fall 2013─Franchising Management. There is a high demand for managers and entrepreneurs with an understanding of franchises and the unique circumstances, requirements and opportunities that they provide. Northwood sees the demand for strong franchise managers as a unique opportunity to evolve its offerings and equip its graduates to meet the needs of the franchise industry.

Stephen Caldeira, president and CEO of the International Franchise Association (IFA), comments, “We congratulate Northwood University on the launch of a degree program in franchise management. Northwood’s program is historic, being the first United States university to offer a fully developed, accredited bachelor’s degree program in franchise management.”

Keith A. Pretty, president and CEO of Northwood University, commented, “This is a great opportunity for two world-class organizations to collaborate and meet the educational needs of another strategic business industry. We look forward to being a full partner with the International Franchise Association and their members to advance the unique needs of this business sector.”

The Franchising Management major is a unique curriculum that combines courses pertaining to franchising as well as entrepreneurship, management and marketing. This degree will furnish students with the knowledge and skills to manage or launch their own franchise operation. Those students who graduate with a Franchising Management degree will be equipped to: manage different domestic and international franchise models; evaluate and manage issues and trends in franchising; comprehend and understand compliance issues, the roles of commercial law, real estate law and technology as they pertain to franchising; and demonstrate competency in marketing, operations and finance as they pertain to franchising. In the formulation of this program Northwood consulted alumni and industry experts who manage or own their own franchises as well as the International Franchise Association (IFA).

John Reynolds, president of the IFA Educational Foundation, stated, “We are looking forward to working with Northwood University faculty and staff on this program which provides a pathway for young people, and really for people of all ages, to learn about the franchising industry and the many career paths and opportunities it affords.”

This program will begin on Northwood University’s Michigan campus in the fall of 2013 with plans to offer the degree on the Florida and Texas campuses in the future. Professor James Hop is leading the program. Dr. Lance Lewis, Michigan academic dean, stated, “This new major recognizes the importance of the franchising industry and goes hand-in-hand with the University’s mission. Franchising already contributes over $2 trillion dollars to the global economy and continues to grow, both domestically and overseas. With the support of partners like IFA, Northwood alumni such as Joe Crawford and 30-year veteran franchisor Greg Longe, graduates in this major will provide the future leadership to continue that industry growth. Northwood would like to give a special acknowledgement to Greg Longe who assisted from the inception of the program to date.”

Ken Walker, past chairman of IFA and past chairman of Driven Brands (which owns Meineke Car Care Centers, MAACO, Econo-lube N’ Tune, AutoQual USA, Drive N Style and Tortal Learning Centers), commented, “I have had the good fortune of knowing and working with the leadership of Northwood for the past 30 years through their work with the automotive aftermarket. I was, therefore, very pleased and excited to learn the University will bring the same skill set and dedication to a curriculum based around an undergraduate degree in franchising.  Franchising is at the very heart of small business which puts it at the very essence of a free enterprise system.”


Northwood University is committed to the most personal attention to prepare students for success in their careers and in their communities; it promotes critical thinking skills, personal effectiveness, and the importance of ethics, individual freedom and responsibility.

Private, nonprofit, and accredited, Northwood University specializes in managerial and entrepreneurial education at three full-service, residential campuses located in southern Florida, mid-Michigan and northern Texas. Adult Degree Programs are available in eight states with many course delivery options including an online option. The DeVos Graduate School offers day, evening and weekend programming in Michigan, Texas and Florida. The Alden B. Dow Center for Creativity and Enterprise provides system-wide expertise in family enterprise, entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation, and new business development. International education is offered through study abroad and in Program Centers in Switzerland, China, Malaysia and Sri Lanka.