By Mckenzie Mulligan
If you have considered a full-time MBA program, it’s no surprise that it is a big decision and a big commitment of both your time and money. It is an opportunity to invest in yourself for two years in order to grow personally and professionally.
As you think through this decision, it is important to think about the ROI of the MBA and realize it is more than just your earning potential. Here are five types of ROI that are important to think about when wondering if an MBA will pay off. Here’s what you need to know:
Increased Earning Potential
This is the obvious one but an important one! We know making money is essential and an MBA helps you maximize your earning potential. The investment you make into your career pays off right away: the average starting salary for our Class of 2019 MBA graduates right out of the program was $118,888. Additionally, many employers may offer sign-on bonuses and relocation packages to attract the best talent; the average signing bonus for our Class of 2019 was $25,642. Assuming you will continue to have salary increases as you advance, then it should be clear that you are making a very wise investment in your future, financially speaking.
Well-Rounded Business Knowledge
As a first year MBA student, you will be required to take core business classes such as finance, accounting, and communications. If you haven’t worked in a business setting before or didn’t receive this type of education in your undergraduate career, then this new knowledge is a key part of your return on investment.
As you progress in the program, you can customize your curriculum by adding concentrations, specializations, and emphases. The structure of the curriculum gives you the best of both worlds: a foundation in practices of business while offering the flexibility to shape your curriculum to meet your specific needs and career goals. When you leave the MBA program you will feel prepared for the industry you enter, while also having well-rounded business knowledge for the long term.
Training to Further Your Career
Inside and outside of the classroom you will have the opportunity to improve your soft skills. Soft skills are necessary in the business world, and key as you go through the hiring process. Corporate recruiters state that soft skills are the number one criteria they look for when hiring.
You will practice and improve in areas such as interviewing, public speaking, leadership, management, and teamwork. Some programs also offer personalized training, such as Vanderbilt Business’ Leadership Development Program. This program to helps to identify your strengths and define your leadership style.
Career Development Resources
While at business school, you will have access to career management coaches to help you polish your resume, improve your interviewing skills, determine the best career paths for your goals, connect you with recruiters, and more. You will gain valuable insights into the craft of interviewing that you will take with you into your internship, your first post-MBA job, and beyond. As an alumnus, you will still have career services support to make sure you continue to be successful.
Who you know is important, and many people attend business school in order to meet peers and connect with alumni of the school. With over 10,000 Vanderbilt Business alumni across the world plus thousands more Vanderbilt University grads, you will gain a valuable network of peers, mentors, friends, and a community that will help you succeed during and after your time at business school. The alumni network is especially important since our graduates often play a critical role in helping students recruit for MBA internships and full-time jobs. And of course, having a large, well-connected network is important for success in any business position.
If you are ready to take the next step in your career, make sure you are considering all the valuable benefits an MBA has to offer. Earning your MBA ensures that you are maximizing your earning potential and gaining the right skills and confidence to be successful in the future, no matter your business endeavors. If you’d like to learn more about how getting your MBA pays off, feel free to visit our program page, or reach out to our admissions team.