College of Business Begins Direct Admit Program for Freshmen

November 12, 2019

MISSOULA – Beginning fall 2020, University of Montana students interested in studying business will have a faster route into UM’s College of Business.              

Traditionally, students who wish to declare a business major had to be first fully admitted to UM and then formally apply to the College of Business during their sophomore year.

UM business students participate in Professor Michael Harrington’s business ethics course.Now, first-year UM students entering the fall semester in 2020 may be invited to the Direct Admit Program within the business college. The new program will allow UM freshmen to declare business as their major rather than waiting until they are sophomores  ̶  a move that can save students time and resources and offer earlier access to required coursework.

“The Direct Admit Program provides students with numerous opportunities to engage more fully with their education through mentorship, networking and leadership development activities,” said Kathleen Tarkalson, director of student success and internships in the College of Business. “For students interested in maximizing their time at UM, this program will jumpstart the process.”

Direct admit business students will still need to complete lower-division course requirements so they will be prepared for upper-division coursework. But they won’t need to apply for admission to the business college.

Along with access to specific scholarships, the Direct Admit Program provides students with early access to the benefits of belonging to the College of Business, including:

  • Active engagement with COB faculty, staff, alumni and current students.
  • Networking with other high-potential business students.
  • Leadership development training.
  • Opportunities to explore global business through study abroad immersion trips.
  • Invitation to COB special events.
  • Priority access to additional COB scholarships.

The College of Business considers a number of factors when making direct admission decisions of applicants, including high school GPA, strength of academic coursework, test scores and a person’s ability to enhance diversity.

UM’s College of Business is the only business school in the state and one of the few in the region to offer a Direct Admit Program. More information on applying to UM is online at

The College of Business at UM is nationally renowned and has been named the top business school in the Big Sky Conference by U.S. News and World Report for four consecutive years.


Contact: Kathleen Tarkalson, director of student success and internships, UM College of Business, 406-243-6771,