This Huntsville project manager got his MBA in 2 years while balancing work and family—find out how


Justin Henderson UNA MBA
Justin Henderson has added “MBA” to his list of titles. (Jacob Blankenship / Hville Blast)

One chapter ends, and another begins. This was the case earlier this month for Justin Henderson as he celebrated graduating from the University of North Alabama (UNA) with his Master of Business Administration as his son, Everest, prepared for his first day of Kindergarten. 

Read on for more info about Justin’s time at UNA, plus everything you need to know about the Executive MBA program. 

Meet Justin Henderson 

Justin Henderson UNA MBA
For two years, Justin was a PMO at Hexagon by day, student by night. (Jacob Blankenship / Hville Blast)

Though he’s found his place as a project management office director at Hexagon, Justin hasn’t always been certain about his career path. His undergrad degree in history, social science and criminology led him to teach 8th and 9th grade students for four years before moving back to the Huntsville area to be closer to family in 2010.

That’s when he started working at Hexagon as a project manager. He was certified as a Project Management Professional in 2014 and started thinking about graduate school soon after. 

A family affair 

Justin officially began his graduate coursework with UNA during the fall 2020 semester. Since the Executive MBA program is 100% online, Justin was able to focus on his PMO duties during the day and shift to coursework in the evenings after Everest went to bed. 

“UNA definitely makes flexibility a priority in its online programs, and emphasizes the ease of making it adaptable to your life and your work situation.”

Justin Henderson, UNA Executive MBA graduate

Though it was sometimes necessary to sacrifice family time for coursework, Justin was still able to make family a priority during his two years in the program, still coaching t-ball and making time to read Everest a bedtime story each night. 

Instant applications

Justin Henderson UNA MBA
Ready to take his coursework from the classroom to the boardroom. (Jacob Blankenship / Hville Blast)

One of the best parts of taking classes while working full-time? Justin didn’t have to wait until he received his degree to begin implementing the things he was learning in the classroom. 

This was most evident through the Leading Complex Collaborations class he completed this past spring. The course highlighted the Ten Skills for Agile Leadership, which help leaders move organizations quickly through new ways of thinking, behaving and doing.  

Justin found the class instantly applicable to his work as a PMO, which often requires him to organize large groups of diverse personalities around a single task.

“You want to embrace everybody’s individual personalities and the way they operate, but you also have a common goal—they’re managing these projects for this business unit. That class really gave some interesting insight into how you can organize and lead groups to make decisions when you have that very different set of personalities or backgrounds.”

Justin Henderson, UNA Executive MBA graduate

Nuts + bolts 

Justin Henderson UNA MBA
Will you be next? (Jacob Blankenship / Hville Blast)

The Executive concentration is one of ten offered by the UNA MBA program. Other concentrations include Project Management, Accounting, Global Business, + Healthcare Management. 

  • Affordable: At $19,550, UNA’s MBA program costs less than one third of the average program, and every newly enrolled student in the MBA program receives their first course FREE with the New Start Scholarship. Other scholarships are available for active duty or retired military, corporate partner employees + UNA alumni.
  • Flexible: The program is 100% online and GMAT scores are currently waived—you just need a bachelor’s degree with a minimum 2.5 GPA.
  • Reputable: UNA is AACSB accredited and has been ranked as the #1 online EMBA program in the nation by College Consensus.
  • Apply now to get started as soon as next semester.

Ready to move your career ahead? Join the next UNA EMBA cohort now

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