For many applicants who want to do an MBA in the US, affordability is one of the primary considerations. After all, although US-based business schools offer an unparalleled range of MBA programs, the tuition costs for many of these are far above many applicants’ budgets.
Also, since MBA programs in the US tend to be two years long (as opposed to programs in Europe, which are usually one year long,) the commitment, in terms of both time and money, quickly adds up. Paying for an MBA can be especially problematic for international students, who may or may not be able to secure loans to cover tuition and fees.
However, there are still affordable MBA programs to be found. Some business schools in the US offer internationally-accredited MBA programs at an affordable cost.
When looking for an affordable MBA, sometimes it’s best to look beyond the big cities. As living expenses in places like New York and Chicago quickly add up, it may make sense to do your MBA off the beaten path to make things a bit easier on your budget.
To take even more strain off of your wallet, make sure to look into scholarships while you’re looking for MBA programs on a budget.
Below, please see a list of the top 10 affordable MBA programs in the US.
BYU’s MBA program is currently ranked by both Businessweek and the Financial Times, and costs less than half of what some other ranked MBA programs cost. This budget-minded MBA includes concentration options in Global Supply Chain Management, Entrepreneurship and Marketing, among others, with graduates most commonly finding jobs in the local technology and manufacturing industries. The school’s MBA programs are accredited by AACSB.View School Profile
This school is ranked in Businessweek, the Financial Times, and the Economist, where its Executive MBA is also ranked. Wisconsin’s highly affordable MBA is offered with 10 specializations, ranging from Arts Administration to Applied Security Analysis, plus Risk Management, Real Estate and Marketing Research. The university’s Big 10 football status lends a spirited atmosphere to the campus.View School Profile
At 16 months long, Mays’ full-time MBA program is shorter than many others in the US, which can help minimize living expenses. With a solid ranking in Businessweek – and its EMBA ranked in the Financial Times – Mays’ MBA remains imminently popular with international students on a budget. Offering proximity to both Austin and Houston, the program regularly places graduates in roles in consulting, financial services and technology industries.View School Profile
Although for many Illinois-bound MBA applicants, Chicago is a preferred destination, the city can be exactly the opposite of affordable. A couple of hours south is the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, which offers an value MBA ranked by both Businessweek and the Financial Times, as well as lower cost of living than the Windy City. The MBA is customizable: students can choose electives outside the College of Business. This affordable MBA offers various concentrations, including Healthcare Management, Corporate and Social Responsibility and Strategic Management.View School Profile
The two-year MBA program at the University of Florida is ranked in both Businessweek and the Economist. For budget-minded students, the school also offers an accelerated one-year MBA with the same range of majors: Finance, Human Capital, Marketing, Real Estate, Strategy and Supply Chain Management. At only one year long, this MBA is popular with those who don’t want to budget for two years of living expenses. The school is accredited by AACSB.View School Profile
Although smaller in size than neighboring cities St. Louis and Kansas City, Columbia has a lot going for it: it was recently selected by Forbes magazine as one of the best small places in the US for business and careers. And for many international students, Trulaske’s affordable MBA program can provide a launch pad for landing careers in the city and neighboring areas. Alongside the two-year MBA and EMBA, the school also offers a handful of dual degrees: the MBA/Master of Health Administration, the MBA/MS in Structural Engineering and the MBA/JD.View School Profile
Terry is in Athens, Georgia, which is much smaller and more affordable than neighboring Atlanta. The school’s full-time MBA program, which is ranked in both Businessweek and the Economist, sits alongside its equally well-regarded Executive MBA. Entrepreneurship and Marketing are just two of the concentrations available within the school’s MBA program.View School Profile
New York state-bound MBA applicants who don’t want to shoulder the cost of living right in New York City might consider Buffalo’s Businessweek-ranked full-time MBA program, which is accredited by AACSB. Indeed, Buffalo features more affordability in terms of cost of living than the Big Apple! For those looking for customization, Buffalo’s affordable MBA program also features a broad selection of concentrations, including Supply Chains and Operations Management.View School Profile
Knoxville’s full-time MBA program is substantially more affordable than many other ranked programs in Tennessee. The program has very strong placement stats in supply chain management roles, and has been accredited by AACSB. The school is also known for its specialist Aerospace & Defense MBA.View School Profile
The school's Businessweek and Economist-ranked MBA program is good value, compared to some others in North Carolina. This budget MBA offering includes two interesting concentrations in Biosciences Management and Entrepreneurship & Technology Commercialization. The school’s Online MBA is also highly regarded: it was ranked 18th in the world in the Financial Times’ Online MBA Ranking 2017.View School Profile
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