One of the fastest-growing graduate degrees in the United States is the Master of Business Administration. According to statistics from the U.S. Department of Education, in 2011-2012, 25.4 percent of all the master's degrees conferred in the U.S. were advanced degrees in business. The rise in popularity of an MBA is being driven by business professionals planning to advance or change their careers, entrepreneurs looking to launch or manage an enterprise, and professionals with degrees wanting to improve their business knowledge, skills and networking opportunities.
Careers for MBA graduates are limitless. Most online MBA programs include classes in accounting and finance, economics and statistics, business strategy and operations, marketing, international business, and general management. Depending on the student's area of interest, there are countless job opportunities in high demand within a variety of industries after graduation. The highest-paying MBA jobs – including a median salary of $117,000 for engineering managers, $127,130 for marketing managers and $173,320 for CEOs, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) – might also help a student determine which path to take.
Healthcare is a rapidly changing and booming industry, and that growth is expected to continue well into the future. Because of the increased demand for expert healthcare managers with an MBA, this field offers strong career growth and good salaries. The BLS reports that the demand for trained medical and health services managers will increase by 23 percent by 2022. Careers for healthcare MBA graduates include administrator, chief executive officer, chief financial officer, quality improvement manager, insurance coordinator and pharmaceutical consultant. MBAs can serve hospitals, clinics, medical offices, physician medical practices, nursing homes, rehabilitation centers, home health services, mental health programs, pharmaceutical companies, insurance companies, university research centers, the military and government agencies.
The field of criminal justice is another rapidly growing sector in the U.S. Across the country, there is an increased focus on law enforcement, public safety and security, crime prevention, immigration and terrorism, and that has created a high demand for criminal justice professionals. Police and detective employment is projected to grow 5 percent through 2022, and private investigator jobs are expected to increase by 11 percent by 2022, according to the BLS. Careers for criminal justice MBA graduates, particularly for executive-level leaders who have an MBA, are varied and numerous, and are available now and into the future. Popular positions include police and detective supervisor, criminologist, FBI agent, police chief, corrections supervisor, criminal investigator, U.S. customs agent, criminology researcher, court administrator, security manager, social worker, lawyer and college professor.
The increased need for data analysts with statistical experience has given rise to boundless job opportunities in any industry. The BLS predicts employment of data analysts and business analysts will soar in coming years. In 2015 and beyond, enterprises and agencies are looking to hire more business analysts, data architects, data analysts, data visualizers and database programmers, according to the recent IDG Enterprise study, 2015 Big Data and Analytics, Insights into Initiatives and Strategies Driving Data Investments. The BLS also reported that many statistical data analysts begin their careers after completing a master's degree. Data analysts with an MBA are likely to enjoy the best career advantages.
Entrepreneurship – developing an idea into a profitable business from the ground up – is an increasingly popular career choice. Entrepreneurial careers for MBA graduates include launching a new venture or finding positions as business development managers/directors, consultants or marketing managers/directors in industries such as financial services, manufacturing, computer systems and home healthcare services.
No matter the career path, investing in an online MBA program can help an MBA graduate move to the next level and a higher salary, in addition to offering flexibility, convenience and a plethora of employment options.
Learn more about Lamar University’s online MBA programs.
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