A Master of Business Administration is one of the most popular graduate degrees in the United States. According to Fortune magazine, the degree also yields a great return on investment — one of the best in the education industry. About 191,600, or 25.4 percent of all advanced degrees in the United States, were awarded in graduate business programs for the 2011-2012 school year.
While plenty of lucrative opportunities exist for MBA graduates in more traditional fields, such as finance, the flexibility of the MBA degree is increasingly valuable in other industries, as well. The following are three industries that you might not have realized have a significant demand for MBA graduates.
While many people tend not to think of business when they think of sports, the fact of the matter is that sport franchises are multi-million dollar (and in many cases, multi-billion dollar) enterprises, with branding, seven-figure contracts and extensive marketing campaigns associated with the teams, players and leagues. The sports industry is growing, as well, with an estimated $145.3 billion in growth projected from 2010 to 2015.
Business knowledge is an essential part of running almost every aspect of a sports franchise and MBAs are more highly valued in the industry now than ever before.
The health care industry has experienced some of the most consistent growth of any industry in the United States, accounting for more than $3 trillion in spending each year. MBAs are an important part of helping to run many medical facilities, from hospitals to research institutions. In fact, about 5 percent of MBA graduates in 2014 took jobs in the health care industry, with a median salary of $120,000.
Technology is often thought of as an industry full of highly technical or creative individuals, with aggressive and disruptive startups teeming with programmers and visionaries. However, even the most inspired and society-changing technology needs to be managed within a responsible business structure that will ensure the long-term success of that business.
In addition, the technology industry is filled with some of the largest companies in the history of the world. Apple, for example, has a market capitalization that is quickly approaching $1 trillion. These companies require massive infrastructure and logistical management — something for which MBAs are particularly suited. If you have an interest in working for world-changing companies with your MBA, then the high-tech industry might be the place to go.
Opportunities for MBAs in technology are vast as well, with about 17 percent of graduates taking jobs in the industry at a median salary of $120,000 with a median signing bonus of $25,000.