For many people who are interested in a career in finance, an MBA in finance is a clear choice when it comes to higher education.
There are many different life and career paths that lead professionals to earn an online MBA in finance. Some MBA students have already spent time working, and they are interested in returning to school to further their income and increase their earning potential. Other MBA students have yet to enter the professional world and are working to pursue an MBA full-time after completing their undergraduate studies. Still others are interested in achieving their online MBA in finance while working. Going to school online provides a unique flexibility that allows busy professionals to learn and work at the same time.
All MBA degrees offer a broad scope of professional business topics, including entrepreneurship, leadership, management, economics, markets, advertising, and accounting. An MBA in finance offers education in each of these areas, in addition to a special emphasis on the monetary side of business. An MBA in finance equips its graduates with a large skill set that can make them valuable employees in a variety of different organizations.
While many students choose to take a full-time course load in order to achieve their online MBA in finance as quickly as possible, some students find it more beneficial to complete coursework part-time. This option is especially popular among students who work full-time in addition to their studies. Completing course work online is an especially popular option for students who work, as online coursework allows students to move at their own pace, without requiring that they set foot into a classroom.
Students who pursue an online MBA in finance often bring a variety of different professional and educational experiences to the table. Whether you choose to get your MBA in finance online or in a traditional classroom setting, you’ll benefit from soaking up the wealth of experiences your classmates bring to your education.
MBA programs offer a wide scope of business education, helping graduates who work in a variety of fields. An emphasis on leadership makes graduates of MBA finance programs an asset to their companies, as they know how to effectively lead a team.
If you choose to pursue your MBA in finance, you’ll have a variety of career paths available to you after graduation.
Career Paths and Average Salaries
Let’s take a look at some of the most common career paths and median salaries for people who acquire their MBA in finance.
Personal Financial Advisor (PFA)
Average Salary: $81,000
If you have a knack for working with people one-on-one, and you’re passionate about helping clients grow their wealth, then becoming a personal financial advisor might be a good career path for you. PFAs work with clients and families to help them save, invest, and grow their money in smart ways. It’s important that PFAs build strong, trusting relationships with their clients.
The field is growing exponentially, at a rate of 30% per year, compared to an average of 7% growth for all jobs in the United States. Personal financial advisors may work for large wealth management firms, or they may open up their own small businesses. Some PFAs help clients at every stage of life, while others may have a specialty, such as helping people save for their retirement or helping them invest their savings.
Average Salary: $81,000
Financial analysts put their financial savvy to work analyzing trends and predicting changes in the market for individuals and corporations. Some financial analysts are employed by large financial firms, while others work for corporations that are not involved in the finance market.
Much like personal financial advisors, financial analysts can also be successful at running their own small businesses and at consulting for individuals and corporations without the backing of a large financial firm. Universities (both public and private) and nonprofit organizations also make use of financial analysts to help make predictions about upcoming financial issues and to plan for the years ahead.
Average Salary: $118,000
A financial manager handles many different aspects of a corporation’s finances. While a financial manager’s exact responsibilities can differ depending on their organization’s size and needs, he or she is generally responsible for managing the organization’s overall financial health. This can mean responsibility for tasks such as setting goals, setting salaries for other employees, conducting contract negotiation, and finding places in the budget where money can be saved.
Average Salary: $72,000
Budget analysts can work in a variety of different settings, including schools, large corporations, nonprofits, universities, and other companies. If an organization has a budget, it can benefit from hiring a budget analyst. On this career path, analysts interface with a number of different people within a company, working to understand what they need financially in order to successfully do their jobs.
An analyst also works to meet all of the needs of the company while staying within the constraints of the budget. Many budget analysts eventually go on to become chief financial officers, after they grow more familiar with the needs and goals of the company.
Securities and Commodities Agent
Average Salary: $72,000
Securities and commodities agents are what often come to mind when people think about working in finance. These agents are employed by large Wall Street firms, and they’re expected to analyze securities, recognize market opportunities, and conduct trades in limited timeframes. These jobs can be stressful, but they can also be very financially rewarding.
Agents who show promise and the desire to work hard are often promoted quickly. Many agents say that their job is extremely stressful at times, but some feel that this is a small price to pay for the potentially lucrative salary that can be earned during a successful year.
Online MBA in Finance Curriculum Details
When earning an online MBA in finance, you’ll take many of the classes involved in a traditional MBA program, such as statistics, microeconomics, macroeconomics, marketing, ethics, leadership, accounting, and marketing. While some of these topics may seem like they aren’t related directly to finance, they are directly related to the success of anyone who takes on a leadership role in business. As a professional with an MBA, it’s key that you’re able to lead a team to success.
You’ll also take specialty finance classes. These classes will give you an opportunity to dig deep into financial issues that plague corporations, working with other students in either the classroom or in discussion boards online to come up with new, innovative solutions. In advanced financial management, you’ll learn how to make investment portfolio decisions, how to price capital assets, and how to manage portfolios. This class is a great opportunity to bring in your experience from the professional world.
In your corporate budgeting class, you’ll learn how to value capital assets, how to assess the cost of capital and debt, how to calculate risks and rewards when it comes to budgeting, and how to create strategic financial plans. Corporate budgeting is one of the many skills you’ll be able to take back to your job and put into practice immediately.
You’ll also take classes to learn more about international financial markets, making you a valuable asset to companies that do business overseas. Managing foreign exchange rates and global currency trends can be difficult. This class will train you how to handle tricky international situations with confidence.
You’ll learn about corporate restructuring, as well as how to manage mergers and acquisitions in a way that helps your company come out on top. You’ll learn how these restructuring techniques affect the financial health of a company and how these effects trickle down to affect employees and consumers. You’ll also learn key techniques for a successful negotiation during mergers. Much like corporate budgeting, you’ll be able to take what you learn in your corporate restructuring class and immediately begin to put it into use at work, should a restructuring situation occur.
You’ll have the opportunity to choose your own electives based on your interests and what career path you’d like to pursue. An online MBA in finance is as unique as the students in each class. Every student brings his or her own professional experience and career goals to the learning environment, and the entire cohort benefits as a result.