From job promotions to six-figure salaries, there are clear benefits to earning a Master of Business Administration (MBA). Career advancement may even require an MBA. But between work and other obligations, it may not be possible to take time out for a traditional campus-based program. If this sounds like you, an online MBA may be ideal.
Online MBA programs can be a great option for students who want the flexibility to advance their education while they continue to work. Emporia State University (ESU), for example, offers an online MBA program that students can complete while moving ahead in their careers. And they can earn their degree — start to finish — in as few as 12 months.
What Are the Advantages of an Online Format?
Greater flexibility is a major advantage when it comes to online MBAs such as ESU's. Consider how an online MBA can provide the flexibility working professionals need:
Choose the Best Start Date: Traditional, on-campus programs typically have fall and spring semester start dates. Online formats make it possible for schools to offer multiple start dates. ESU, for example, offers six start dates each year. If one date does not work, there is no need to worry. Another opportunity to enroll is right around the corner.
Continue Working: Online programs can eliminate the need to put careers on hold to earn an advanced degree. Plus, students can immediately apply what they are learning to their current positions.
Set Your Own Schedule: With an online format, there is no need to rush off to class. Students can get creative about how they schedule classwork around other obligations. Driving to work? Taking time out for a walk or a workout? These can be great times to listen to prerecorded lectures. Plus, with an online format, students can break up class assignments into more manageable chunks to fit into a hectic schedule.
One of the biggest benefits of an online MBA may be the potential to graduate sooner than you would in a campus-based program. This can mean a shorter path to higher-paying jobs, less debt and a faster return on investment.
Why Choose a General MBA?
A 2018 Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) Corporate Recruiters Survey shows that business development, data analytics and marketing are in-demand skills for new business school graduates. For students who are unsure which area they want to specialize in, a general MBA may be the way to go.
With a general MBA, students can build the essential skills to expand employment opportunities. At the same time, they can tailor coursework according to professional goals.
Students in ESU's MBA program can choose from electives that emphasize areas such as:
- Business law, including contracts
- Information technology (IT) project management
- Business analytics
- Electronic marketing (e.g. via the internet) and marketing analytics
- Consumer behavior
A general MBA can be a great fit for students who want the benefit of a well-rounded education and the flexibility to select courses that focus on areas of interest.
Earning an MBA can boost job prospects, opening the door to roles like Financial Manager, Director of Marketing, Business Analyst, Chief Information Officer, Management Consultant and more.
MBA graduates can also look forward to a raise. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that business occupations have some of the highest wage premiums for a master's. Recent MBA grads earn a median starting salary of $105,000 per year compared with $65,000 for a bachelor's, says a recent GMAC survey. An online program can put all the benefits of an MBA within reach for students with busy lives.
Learn more about Emporia State University's online MBA program.
Sources:GMAC Advisor: MBA Graduates Continue to Command a Salary Premium in the Hiring Market
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