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Online MBA in Finance

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Corporate America is as competitive as ever and an advanced degree or designation is becoming necessary to keep pace. If you are pursuing a career in finance, consider an online MBA in Finance degree. MBA graduates see career advancement, increased job security and higher compensation. According to a study by GMAC, the baseline percentage increase in post-degree salary increase after earning an MBA is about 66%.An investment in a finance MBA is an investment in yourself.

What is an Online MBA in Finance degree?

The online MBA in Finance is a graduate level program focused on meeting the needs and challenges of today’s financial professional. It falls somewhere between an MBA and a Master’s of Science in Finance. Finance MBAs have the specialization in finance but also a broader overview of the business landscape.

Online MBA in FinanceMost MBA programs are structured with six core business courses typically including leadership, accounting, marketing, ethics, business law and management. There are additional class offerings for electives. Programs typically have three finance courses that make up the concentration. These finance courses cover the areas a student is likely to face in a financial environment.

As an example, Benedictine University’s Finance concentration offers the following three courses:2

  • Cost Analysis, Profit Planning and Control
  • Theory and Practice of Financial Reporting
  • Investment Theory and Portfolio Management

In these courses, students will learn to assess the feasibility of different projects through capital budgeting analyses including Net Present Value and Internal Rates of Return. Students then must prioritize and select the best options. Students also learn how to utilize workplace control systems, likely found in many corporate finance departments, as the manager. In short, MBA graduates learn the necessary tools to lead in any company or organization.

Also, analysis and valuation of various securities will also be explored. This will have an emphasis on fundamental analysis, using financial statements and other variables to determine a stocks intrinsic value. Students learn the tools to select securities for investment. Finally, these students learn how to best incorporate these securities into an efficient investment portfolio based on risk and reward parameters.

What Kind of Jobs Can I Get with an online MBA in Finance?

The MBA in Finance degree will appeal to a broad range of employers in the business community. The MBA in Finance is the best of both worlds since students experience the broad business curriculum of an MBA but with a more advanced finance curriculum.

Typical employers for a finance MBA graduate include asset management, banking, and consulting. But the broader curriculum might also appeal to more fringe financial categories, including real estate and insurance. Many Finance MBA graduates go on to become consultants, financial managers, investment banking associates, insurance claims adjusters, public accountants and financial advisors.

How do I Choose the Right Online MBA in Finance program?

With more choices than ever for online MBA programs, it’s important to do your research. Factors to consider include the school’s reputation, networking, flexibility and career planning.

Students are encouraged to research schools that have positive brand recognition, a long operating history and solid track record of gainful employment. The media is loaded with stories of students who spent tens of thousands of dollars for their degree, and were unable to secure a position after graduation. Also, most MBA in Finance programs make no specification to program modality. In other words, it won’t read ‘Online Masters of Business Administration in Finance’ on your diploma.

Research the final Capstone project for each school’s program. The Capstone project encompasses all the material learned in the program. It’s a valuable piece of your curriculum and allows you to put all the learned material to date into practice with a real-world business project. It is often the highlight of many programs and often students must present their findings to an outside company, presentation skills they’re likely to face in a business environment.

Networking is one of the biggest contributors to success in getting a job in finance, but obtaining an MBA online can make networking a bit challenging. Here are a few questions to consider when selecting a school. Is there an engaged alumni network? Is there an on-campus residency? Does the program follow a cohort-model? A cohort model has students take all the classes together as they progress? Doing so allows for greater camaraderie and support, translating into real business connections down the road.

MBA Flexibility Options- Accelerated and ‘Flex’ programs

For the student who wants to obtain their MBA quickly, there are accelerated online MBA in Finance programs. There is the opportunity cost to consider when leaving a job for a full-time MBA program. These are typically comprised of around 30 credit hours and take about a year to complete (including summer sessions). Just because there’s less of a time commitment doesn’t mean less quality (the courses are often compressed into 8 week semesters).

Flex programs offer students a variety of platforms and time frames to complete the program. These might include a combination of both online and on-ground campuses, variable time constraints for program completion, and multiple on-ground campus locations. This program is designed for the full-time professional who wants to take a part-time approach to furthering their education.

For example, Johns Hopkins University offers an MBA in Finance, typically completed in about three years. But the program may be completed as quickly as two and a half years, or as late as six years depending on your preference and personal situation. In addition to their online offerings, they also have three physical campus locations that offer classes.

Finally, a well-connected career services department can help in you land a job in finance upon graduation. Even while enrolled in school, career services can help secure an internship. This is important because MBA graduates that received an offer from the company they interned for enjoyed an average 84% increase in salary.3 Even if you’re planning on staying with your current employer, an online MBA in Finance will show strong initiative and can help advance your career.

Featured Online FLEX MBA in Finance Programs

1http://poetsandquants.com/2012/05/30/the-mba-bump-how-much/
2http://online.ben.edu/business/mba/mba-in-finance
3http://poetsandquants.com/2012/05/30/the-mba-bump-how-much/

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Online MBA in Finance
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Online MBA in Finance
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An Online MBA in Finance is a graduate level program focused on meeting the needs and challenges of today’s financial professional.
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