Business management as an undergraduate major is important and sought after by many high school students; however, this major is only available in selective four-year colleges. Admission is relatively challenging as business also counts as an impacted major along with computer science, economics, engineering, and psychology.
As per the National Center for Education Statistics, colleges conferred about 2.0 million Bachelor’s degrees in 2019–20. Business studies were the most popular undergraduate major and made up for 19 percent (387,900 degrees) conferred that year and the number continues to grow.
Types of Business Degrees
A BBA (Bachelor’s in Business Administration), includes more business-specific courses and fewer general education requirements. The basic business requirements for the first few semesters include classes in data analysis, basic accounting, accounting, and business strategy. In a BA (Bachelor of Arts) in business, students take more liberal arts and social science courses along with some business requirements. A BS (Bachelor of Science) in business includes courses that lean a little more on STEM subjects like statistics, advanced math, and economics.
There is no better or worse scenario in any of these degrees, and there are no fixed classes; it is just dependent on your long-term goals, the college that you choose to go to. After the general requirements are met, depending on each college, students have the option of choosing electives focusing on business entrepreneurship, accounting, finance, HR, marketing, logistics, practical training, and other related fields.
The variety of business degrees offered
Just to give an example, UC Berkeley Haas School of Business offers a variety of business degrees that are very specialized and address the need of the changing global landscape. For example, you can participate in the Business Administration, Management Entrepreneurship and Technology program or the Global Management program. In the admission year of 2021-2022, there were 2,976 sophomore and transfer applicants, and 356 (or 11%) were accepted. Before the admission year of 2022-2023, Haas School of Business didn’t not accept first-year undergraduate applications. This was the first year that the Haas School opened admission directly to high school students.
On the other hand, there are undergraduate business management programs that welcome direct admission for high school students, such as the one at the Leavey School of Business at Santa Clara University (SCU). It offers a sampling of generic business requirement classes with the choice to funnel up to a major such as accounting, marketing, finance, management, and more. The acceptance rate for SCU was 29% into the Leavey School of Business with the average GPA between 3.6 to 3.9.
Level of preparedness for admission to a business undergraduate
Students intending to study business need to prepare and take classes like economics, statistics, and other business electives in their high school (and outside) that showcase their interests and skills in the subject. Summer activities can also be planned around exposing themselves to a business environment, be it a part-time retail job or an internship.
After you graduate from college – MBA?
With business degrees, graduates work as market research analysts, accountants, and management analysts. Earning a bachelor’s degree generally takes four years for full-time students. Average salaries vary depending on the major and the industry. Students can also earn degrees in specific industries, like healthcare administration, hospitality management, or supply chain management.
After a bachelor’s degree in business, some students choose work for a few years before they consider working towards an MBA (Master’s in Business Administration). Some business schools stress having work experience and will only consider applicants who have worked full-time. To get into an MBA program, students need to pass the GMAT, a standardized business-school admission test.
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