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How to Pay for an MBA

One of the most common reasons people give for not going back to school and earning an advanced degree is the cost. While getting an education does cost money, the long-term financial gains usually outweigh the cost of tuition. Plus, many prospective students tend to forget about financial aid options such as scholarships. If you are thinking of earning a Master of Business Administration (MBA), do not let the up-front costs keep you from reaping all of the major benefits you will receive upon graduating.

Understanding the Costs

To plan for the expense of earning an MBA, it is important to first understand the costs associated with going back to school. Most online MBA programs cost between $35,000 and $50,000 and usually charge per unit or credit hour. For example, tuition for Boise State University’s online MBA program is $750 per unit. The 49-unit program costs $36,750 in tuition.

In addition to tuition, students are responsible for buying or renting their own textbooks. Students can save money by buying used textbooks and reselling them online or at buy-back stores after the course is over. Reliable internet access is another expense students must account for.

Other school-related expenses may include application fees and study materials, such as flashcards and highlighters. You may have to work fewer hours or take time off from work to study. Keep a record of all school-related expenses and explore the possibility of using the costs as tax write-offs by talking to a tax professional.

Getting the Best Return on Investment

The purpose of an MBA is to elevate your existing body of knowledge about the business world so you will be better qualified for higher-paying jobs. By investing money in your education now, you can reap lifelong benefits including a higher salary, better job security, and eligibility for more jobs and promotions.

According to a 2016 report by the Graduate Management Admission Council, “Graduates of professional MBA programs — part-time, online, and executive MBA — recoup their investment in two and a half years, on average.” With better starting salaries and nearly limitless room for growth, earning an MBA offers a path to greater financial stability.

Make the most of an MBA — view your education as an investment and take in every bit of information you’re offered. The more you learn, the more valuable you will be to employers who need your skills and expertise.

Paying for Your MBA

If you need help paying for college, be sure to research the scholarship options available to you. At Boise State University, scholarships are available for students who work for affiliate partners, have relevant work experience, are BSU alumni or are military personnel. BSU also saves students money by including all online MBA course materials — which consist of 100 percent digital content — in the cost of tuition.

For more scholarship opportunities, talk to your school’s financial aid department or visit a few online scholarship search databases.

Getting an education costs money, but you can survive the temporary dent in your finances when you consider the long-term return on your investment. Plan ahead and look for funding opportunities early to get the best ROI from your MBA.

Learn more about the Boise State online MBA program.


USA Today: The 10 Best Sites to Search for Scholarships

GMAC: 2016 Alumni Perspectives Survey Report

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