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The Best States For MBA Graduates


You have just graduated with your Master’s degree in Business Administration. You are now knowledgeable and competent enough to manage several people and start your new career. The next step is finding a job that suits your needs, but where do you go? Where do you even start looking? Below is a list of the ten best states for MBA graduates. Consider heading to one of these states for more plentiful jobs or healthier salaries.

#1. California

People have long flocked to the California coast for everything from freedom to a great place to raise a family. Now there are people flocking there to get great jobs that will suit their new degree. One of the reasons is that California hosts a laid back lifestyle that appeals to many. No matter what position you find, you are sure to take part in this lifestyle. California has also been a great place to raise a family for years, and many young professionals and continuing professionals find that enticing.

As for actual jobs, California is full of them. Hosting the largest economy of any state in the U.S., California gives many opportunities that other states just can’t. Los Angeles and San Francisco are huge business centers, and large metropolitan areas like San Diego, Anaheim, and Sacramento, there are several jobs available for those seeking them. For anyone with tech experience, Silicon Valley is also a hot spot.

#2. New York

California may have a great lifestyle, but if it is high pay that you want, New York is the state for you. New York City has long been called the business capital of the United States, and at times it fights its way to the top business capital of the world. New York plays host to the world and national headquarters of several Fortune 500 companies, including three of the four Big 4 public accounting firms, several banks and brokerage houses, and nearly all of the major financial exchanges that are relevant in the United States. New York is a place to make it big for the new MBA.

#3. Massachusetts

Boston is not only known for its crab cakes and Red Sox, but it is also known for its need for MBA level talent. For years, Boston has survived on manufacturing and its fishing industry. In the modern age, many service businesses are starting to take over, and financial services and other firms are thriving. Private Equity companies have also taken a hold in Boston, including ABRY Partners and Bain Capital. This metropolis grows better for the MBA every day.

#4. Washington

Seattle has long been a location for young people to go. Now it has become a location for many educated businesspeople to go and look for work. This city is also home to some of the highest salary growth rates in the United States, rivaling cities like New York and Chicago. The Greater Seattle Area also boasts headquarters of some of the largest retailers, including companies like Amazon.com and QFC. Tech giants, like Microsoft, and web-based companies also call Seattle home. All of these companies are hiring MBAs due to the competitiveness and talent that comes along with them. Although it may be rainy over half of the year, an MBA’s future is bright and sunny in Washington.

#5. Illinois

Whenever anyone thinks of a great place for an MBA to work, Chicago comes to mind. For years Chicago has been home to many national and international companies that deal with finance, accounting, and human resources. There are also several service and manufacturing companies that need MBAs and are actively hiring, such as McDonalds and Boeing, both of which have their headquarters in the City. If you don’t want to work in Chicago, the Rockford, Springfield, and Peoria areas also boast great business parks and a need for educated MBAs to manage their staff and bring insight to their business.

#6. Washington D.C.

Although not technically a state, the District of Columbia has become the city with the fastest growing need and job fulfillment of MBAs in the country. This is partially due to the several business that operate there dealing with politics, which generally keeps is workforce smart and young. This opens up several opportunities for new MBAs to step in and take advantage of the steep learning curve and great pay that comes with positions working for Senators, Political Action Committees, and other political organizations and people.

#7. Ohio

This state does not usually come to mind when we think of “business culture.” What many people fail to remember is that Ohio boasts several cities in which business has, in fact, become part of the culture. Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati, and Dayton have all had business sectors with jobs requiring MBAs that are growing faster than they can keep up with, especially after the end of the recession. If you are looking for low hanging fruit, one of the several cities in Ohio are able to provide it for you when it comes to jobs.

#8. Texas

Out of all fifty states, Texas has seen the highest number of people moving in over the past several years. What was once a dusty and uneventful place has become one of the fastest growing business states in the U.S. The Dallas Metro area is third in MBA job growth over the past four years, being beaten only by Washington D.C. and the state of Ohio. Texas’ three largest metropolitan areas, which are Houston, Austin, and Dallas/Fort Worth, have also attracted throngs of young people, all eager to start in the business world. This has created several new companies and several job openings that require a Master’s degree and a lot of ambition.

#9. New Jersey

We can’t all party like the cast of The Jersey Shore, but we can sure benefit from the several business jobs that are popping up in and around it! New Jersey has always benefited from its proximity to the financial center of New York City. Businesses that want to be close to the Big City but do not want to pay the taxes associated with that state set up shop in New Jersey. This means that there are jobs paying just as well as in New York that need MBAs to fill them. While the job growth has been somewhat slow compared to the other states on this list, the general atmosphere and proximity to New York make job hunting in this state worth doing.

#10. Virginia

Last but not least is the state of Virginia. While not usually seen as a business state, Virginia actually boasts extremely high job growth for MBAs, as well as a regulatory and business environment that is keeping large companies there. Virginia also has an extremely high rank for quality of life, and the salaries compared to the cost of living are quite high. Companies like Capital One and Altria hire hundreds of local MBAs and are headquartered in Richmond.

Having an MBA is a great step towards a brighter future, but knowing where to live can also be a battle. MBAs need to go where they are going to find a job that pays well, and these 10 states offer options that the other 40 states cannot.