5 World-Leading U.S. Graduate Business Schools

Demand for freshly minted graduate-level business school graduates has always been high. But new survey results compiled by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) revealed a surprising development: demand for new business masters graduates is higher than it has been in years. It appears that graduate students at today’s leading business schools are likely to have better employment prospects than they had previously dreamed possible.

The results of this study were published earlier this year in the Corporate Recruiters Survey Report. They found that 88 per cent of corporate recruiters who work directly with business schools planned to hire MBA and business masters graduates throughout the course of this year. That marks an increase of 8 percent from last year and an astonishing 33 points over results from 2010.


Image courtesy of Davis College Of Business, Jacksonville University


To be fair, the 2010 figure represents the lowest point of the recent global recession, when companies were more concerned with weathering the storm than with finding new talent. But even an 8 per cent increase over last year’s hiring figures is notable. So why are employers suddenly so much more interested in hiring recent graduates with a business masters degree?

The answers are obviously complex, and they depend upon the company and the position in question along with a host of other variables. But it’s safe to say that recent graduates possess certain sought-after skills and are better positioned to take on specific roles when compared to their more-experienced counterparts.

Here are three likely reasons why employers are so keen to hire graduates with a masters degree in a business subject:

  1. Succession Planning
    One of the key takeaways from the survey was that many corporate employers are looking to recruit recent graduates with masters degrees in business related subjects because they’re concerned about succession planning. This was particularly evident within the U.S. market, where research suggests that CEO succession planning is woefully behind. This uptick in new hires could indicate that corporate employers are actively searching for future candidates to fill leadership roles as they emerge.
  1. Innovative Thinking
    One of the downsides to an ageing leadership structure is the risk of getting mired in tried-and-true patterns of thinking. On-boarding a fresh recruit or two with a graduate business degree can shake things up and even result in new (and sometimes highly profitable) directions for the company.
  1. Next-Generation Communication Skills
    Surveys consistently tell us that employers value technical knowhow in new hires, but are much more concerned with communication. It’s worth noting that today’s business school graduates are digital natives, and they’re often adept at leveraging technology to communicate effectively. For a non-business-related (but highly relevant) example, consider the recent sit-in on the U.S. senate floor, which was broadcast to the world via Periscope. The idea to do this came from a millennial staff member. Apparently, none of the party leadership had even heard of the app.

Given these developments, there hasn’t been a better time in recent history to pursue a graduate degree in business. Here are a few schools offering exceptional programmes: 


Located on Long Island, just 40 km from New York City, the business capital of the world. The Zarb School is among only 10 percent of business schools that hold AACSB accreditation in both business and accounting. The Princeton Review ranked its Online MBA programme 15thin the U.S., while other publications including ForbesBloomberg BusinessWeek and U.S. News & World Report regularly rank its graduate business programmes amongst the best in the nation. PayScale College Salary Report and PayScale ROI include the Zarb School in the top four percent of ‘Best Schools for Business Majors’ in the U.S.

Zarb offers degree programs in all major business areas and also features one of the largest trading rooms in the U.S., equipped with 34 Bloomberg terminals that allow students to access analytics and data used by professionals. A new Center for Entrepreneurship boasts a start-up incubator and entrepreneurs in residence. A dedicated Graduate Business Career Services team and prestigious Executive Speaker Seriesprovide career development and networking opportunities.


Jacksonville University’s Davis College of Business is no stranger to praise. In 2014, CEO Magazine included JU Davis in its prestigious MBA Rankings – ranking it 7th in North America. Meanwhile, the EMBA track weighed in at 14th internationally for executive programmes. This cemented the school’s position as one of the world’s leading business colleges. For international students keen to earn a well-respected MBA at a top-notch, AACSB-accredited business school, JU Davis College of Business is a strong short-list candidate.

Davis offers several different MBA streams, including Accounting and Finance, ManagementManagement Accounting and Consumer Goods & Services Marketing. The school also offers several Master of Science degrees with a business focus. Part of the secret to the success of JU Davis is its world-class faculty, who take a learn-through-doing approach to learning, with students taking part in team simulations and group projects and internships. Even the campus location on the banks of the St Johns River is enviable. It features tranquil oak-lined paths and historic architecture, with Jacksonville city centre located just upriver and the Atlantic only a few minutes’ drive away.


Accredited by AACSB International, UNC Charlotte’s Belk College of Business offers top-ranked graduate programs in America’s second largest financial center. As North Carolina’s urban research business school, the Belk College has partnered with the business community for decades to create a curriculum that supplies in-demand graduates to Charlotte’s thriving businesses.

Our Center City campus is part of a major metropolitan skyline, and within walking distance of seven Fortune 500 companies. With more than 28,000 alumni worldwide, 18,000 of whom currently work in Charlotte —we are one of the most connected networks in a city that Forbes ranked among the Best Places for Business and Careers. The Belk College of Business offers five different master’s degrees: Master of Business Administration, Master of Accountancy, M.S. in Mathematical Finance, M.S. in Economics and M.S. in Real Estate. Also offered are dual-degrees, Ph.D. programs, a variety of certificates and an executive-format Doctorate in Business Administration program.


Located in the U.S. heartland in the picturesque village of Ada, Ohio, Ohio Northern University Dicke College of Business is a prestigious institute that combines classroom learning with real-world practice to spectacular effect. The school is AACSB accredited, and Bloomberg BusinessWeek ranks it first in Ohio for teaching quality – and it’s easy to see why.

From day one of their education, students are mentored by an accomplished faculty member, and this relationship continues through graduation and into their professional lives. The Masters of Science in Accounting (MSA) gives graduate students the chance to earn the additional credit hours needed to sit for the CPA exam.

Graduates go on to pursue careers in forensic accounting and auditing, among other areas of specialisation. 


As it approaches its centennial anniversary, Fox School of Business is among the largest and most comprehensive business schools in the world. It has a long tradition of equipping business leaders and entrepreneurs for success.

The business school is accredited by AACSB International, and its programmes routinely receive top rankings from major publications and ranking organisations.  The Global MBA is particularly well-lauded, appearing on many top-50 lists for North America and the U.S. In particular, The Economist ranks it 32nd in North America and 57th in the world.

Meanwhile, the business school’s online MBA programme is ranked first in the world by U.S. News & World Report. And with a network of 65,000 alumni worldwide, graduates are immediately inducted into one of the most powerful business networks in the world.

Feature image courtesy of Frank G. Zarb School Of Business, Hofstra University

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