Considering an MBA? Do potential earnings factor into the decision? If so, a 2017 Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) survey has some good news: The projected median starting salaries for recent Master of Business Administration (MBA) graduates in the United States is $110,000. By comparison, recent graduates of bachelor's degree programs earn $60,000.
With earnings this strong for MBAs, why go with an MBA in finance in particular? In "Explore 5 Hot Jobs for MBA Graduates," U.S. News & World Report notes that finance careers for MBAs rank in the top five for salaries, job growth and low unemployment.
La Salle University offers an MBA, Finance Specialization degree that integrates theoretical approaches to finance with real-world experience. The program's flexible online format accommodates the schedules of working professionals. With coursework that can be completed in as few as 14 months, students can earn the credentials they need to put those high-level finance careers within reach.
What Sets an MBA in Finance Apart?
When it comes to landing a job in the financial management field, an MBA can make a difference. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that candidates with a master's and accounting or finance expertise are likely to have a competitive edge.
Core MBA courses build a foundation in marketing management, managerial accounting, financial performance, business analytics for decision-making, and leadership, among other topics. Students enrolled in the finance specialization program gain additional expertise in financial analysis and management, with coursework in the following areas:
- Modern financial markets, including the financial activities of commercial banks, finance companies, securities firms, investment banks, mutual funds and hedge funds.
- Portfolio management, including performance evaluation and measurement and the impact of government regulation.
- Global financial markets, including foreign security markets and risk management.
For those transitioning from other backgrounds to a career in finance, La Salle offers foundation courses to bridge the gap.
What Is the Hiring Market for MBA Graduates With a Finance Focus?
With higher earnings and strong job growth, hiring projections for MBA graduates with a finance focus are encouraging.
- Based on BLS data, financial managers earn a median annual wage of $125,080 -- more than double the median starting salary for recent graduates with a bachelor's.
- In looking at where the jobs are, the 2017 GMAC survey found that 86 percent of companies plan to hire recent MBA graduates. Of these, over 70 percent expect to hire MBA graduates in finance roles.
- In a S. News & World Report Best Business Jobs ranking, "financial manager" makes the top 10. One reason? The opportunity for advancement, including higher earnings.
For professionals considering an MBA, choosing a specialization can provide added value. And when that specialization is finance, the rewards can be significant.
An MBA with a finance focus equips graduates with the broad background required for management roles in any field. The additional specialization helps professionals sharpen their skills and knowledge for finance-specific leadership positions and the higher salaries that come with these careers.
Sources:U.S. News & World Report: What Is a Financial Advisor?
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