Earning an MBA does not come cheap – and there’s much more than just tuition fees to think about. Many top-ranking MBA programs are held in some of the most expensive cities around the world, and besides the cost of living, many MBA students also have to deal with losing out on earnings as a consequence of leaving their previous role in order to pursue study.
That being said, many MBA students would agree that the cost of gaining their qualification is worth it, and the good news is that there are some options to consider when it comes to reducing the cost and paying as little as possible. For some, scholarships can help to reduce the cost – but for most, a large amount of financing is required. And although the investment will most likely end up paying for itself, avoiding getting into debt wherever you can is always the wisest step. If you’ve decided that studying for an MBA is the right pathway for you, but you want to minimize expenses as much as possible, here are some tips that you might find useful.
#1. Shop Around:
The easiest thing for most students to do is to enroll in the brightest, best and most popular college offering an MBA program, but the truth is, these are often usually the most expensive. Instead, it’s worth shopping around and taking a look at your different options – often you may find smaller, cheaper business schools offering outstanding MBA programs that you can take advantage of. The MBA Tour is a great way to do this; you can meet with and research a wide range of different business schools and easily compare all your options in the same place, at one of over sixty events per year in almost fifty different cities around the world.
#2. Study Online:
Another option that may be an attractive one for you if you’re trying to earn an MBA while keeping your costs down as low as possible is to study online. Online degree programs are a useful tool for those who want to spend as little as possible while maximizing their qualifications; they don’t have the same strict schedule as on-campus degree programs and therefore it’s easier than ever for you to fit studying around your lifestyle and existing commitments. As a result, students can often afford to continue working full-time hours in order to avoid losing income. And, tuition fees for many online programs tend to be cheaper compared with studying on campus.
#3. Speak to Your Employer:
If studying for an MBA would benefit your employer too, then it might be worth having a conversation with them. Many employers are willing to fund all or part of an employee’s degree program if it means that at the end of it all they will have a more highly qualified, capable internal member of staff who can be promoted to higher positions and help the company grow. If so far you’ve proven that you are a hard-working, reliable and competent employee, then it’s definitely worth finding out whether your employer is willing to help you cover the cost.
#4. Apply for a Scholarship:
When it comes to getting funding for your MBA degree, there are several scholarship options that you might want to consider. Do some research into scholarships being offered in your local area, or by certain schools that you are considering applying to study at. Anybody can usually apply for a scholarship, so the key here is to make sure that you start your application early and put a lot of effort into demonstrating why you should be chosen over other applicants. If you have had an impressive business career so far, were the first person in your family to go to college, or have started your own business at an early age, for example, then you should be sure to mention these in your application, as it’s stories like these that tend to stand out the most and sway decision makers in your favor.
#5. Try a One-Year Program:
If you’re willing to put in the extra hard work needed in order to get your MBA qualification faster, then you might want to consider taking a one-year program rather than studying for the traditional two years. This will mean that you have less to pay in tuition fees at most business schools, and studying for just one year rather than two means that you’ll be taking less time out of work if needed. Many one-year programs are also online, meaning that you could continue working – but bear in mind that they are usually even more high-intensity, so you’ll need to be prepared for hard work and dedication.
If you’re hoping to gain an MBA qualification, then you’re probably also wondering if there’s any way to save on the cost – which of these options will you try?