South Carolina, with its nearly five million inhabitants, is the 23rd most populous state in the country. Its capital, Columbia, is home to the flagship campus of the University of South Carolina, which serves more than 50,000. A number of other prestigious institutions, like Clemson University and the College of Charleston, also call South Carolina home.
In recent years, South Carolina’s economy has grown faster than the rest of the country. A booming economy, coupled with a strong higher education infrastructure, means that graduates of online MBA programs in South Carolina are well-positioned to find steady and lucrative jobs in the state.
Pursuing an online MBA in South Carolina has a great many benefits, including a flexibility. Through taking courses online, you can save money on transportation, room, and board. By completing your coursework on your own schedule, you can continue to work or raise a family. Online MBA programs in South Carolina can be completed in as few as 12 months or on a more relaxed timetable. In some programs, you can choose to complete your degree 100% online or take some classes on campus. Some institutions, like the University of South Carolina system, offer satellite campuses across the state to make hybrid learning even more accessible.
In recent years, South Carolina’s economy has grown faster than the rest of the country.
You will have the option of focusing on a wide variety of concentrations within the umbrella of business administration, including health care leadership, finance, marketing, and supply chain management. Some programs require you to take the GMAT, while others waive this requirement for applicants with previous work experience. In short, how, when, and where you choose to earn your online MBA in South Carolina is largely up to you.
|Percentage of Students Enrolled by Distance Education|
MBA Concentrations for South Carolina Students
Online MBA programs in South Carolina feature dozens of concentrations in areas like innovation and entrepreneurship, business analytics, finance, marketing, and strategic management. Given the state’s economic profile, supply chain management and healthcare management are two of the most promising concentrations for students enrolled in South Carolina’s online MBA programs. Below is an overview of the sort of jobs you can expect to get with an MBA in these areas.
- Supply Chain Management: Two of the largest industries in South Carolina are aviation and automobile manufacturing. An MBA with a concentration in supply chain management can, for example, position you for a management role in Boeing’s manufacturing division in North Charleston.
- Healthcare Management: MBA graduates who studied healthcare management are ideally suited to take on leadership posts in the state’s university research centers, hospital systems, pharmaceutical companies, or other life sciences organizations.
Accreditation in South Carolina
There are two types of accreditation: regional and national. Regional accreditation is the most common and desirable form of accreditation for nonprofit schools. In South Carolina, the regional accreditation agency is the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. National accreditation, which is done by one of a number of independent agencies authorized by the U.S. Department of Education, is more common for technical or vocational schools. While earning an advanced degree in business can open doors and increase your earnings, it is important to pursue your graduate studies at an accredited institution.
While South Carolina’s largest industry in terms of employment is retail trade, manufacturing remains a sizable segment of the state’s economy, driven in large part by the presence of Boeing and BMW. Despite recent cuts, Boeing continues to employ close to 7,000 workers at its North Charleston manufacturing campus, and BMW employs more than 10,000 workers at its factory in Spartanburg. The largest single employer in the state is the Medical University of South Carolina, at 13,000 workers. The largest network of employers is the Rock Hill Pediatric Association, which employs 60,000 workers.
Overall, the state’s economy has experienced consistent growth since 2010, though economists predict this has begun to level off. Between 2015 and 2016, the statewide average employment growth rate was 2.2%. The rate for the Charleston region during that same time period was 3.2%, outpacing growth in the Columbia region and the more rural upstate region. A strong and growing state economy makes the job outlook for South Carolina online MBA graduates particularly advantageous.
Top Employers in South Carolina
|Company||Industry||Headquarters City||Number of Employees|
|Medical University of South Carolina||Healthcare||Charleston||12,000|
Employment growth and business expansion means that demand for qualified managers will increase. And as that demand increases, so will potential salaries for those who have earned an online MBA in South Carolina.
By continuing your education, particularly at one of the best online MBA programs in South Carolina, you are investing in yourself. According to the Pew Research Center, individuals with master’s degrees earn, across the board, more than their peers who only hold a bachelor’s degree. This is particularly pronounced for those who hold MBAs, as these degrees can put you on the fast track to management positions and high-paying jobs. For those looking to enter the world of business or take the next step in their career, earning an MBA is a worthwhile investment.
|Average Salary by Degree|
Careers for MBAs in South Carolina
- Human Resources Managers
As companies in South Carolina continue to expand and hire personnel, HR managers will play an integral role. Projections Central projects a growth rate of 12.2% in this profession by 2024.
- Medical and Health Services Managers
With hospitals already one of the top employers in South Carolina, opportunities abound for management professionals with an understanding of the unique needs of the healthcare field. Projections Central projects that this profession will grow by 15.8% by 2024.
- Financial Managers
Financial managers, those directly responsible for the financial health of a company, are indispensable in any industry. The projected growth rate is 7.8%, according to Projections Central.
- Industrial Production Managers
With a projected growth rate of only 4.9% over the next seven years, industrial production managers may not be as in demand as some of the above professions. However, professionals in this field are still needed as the manufacturing sector continues to expand in South Carolina.
- Top Executives
For top executives, the story is less about growth than it is about income potential. In 2016, the median salary for these professionals was $103,950. Earning an MBA can set you down the path to these top leadership roles.
To find the program that works best for you, taking into account factors like cost, concentration, and format, you’ll need to research all of the available options in South Carolina. You can begin that research using the list below, which includes all accredited online MBA programs in the state.
|Rank||School||Location||Cost||Toggle||Logo||Tuition||% Receiving Financial Aid||Student Population||School Type||Description|
|Location Anderson, SC||Tuition||Tuition $15,660||% Receiving Financial Aid 64%||Student Population 3,212||School Type Private||View School Profile|
Charleston Southern University
|Location Charleston, SC||Tuition||Tuition $20,625||% Receiving Financial Aid 72%||Student Population 3,621||School Type Private||
ConcentrationsView School Profile
Citadel Military College of South Carolina
|Location Charleston, SC||Tuition||Tuition $37,530||% Receiving Financial Aid 52%||Student Population 3,506||School Type Public||View School Profile|
|Location Orangeburg, SC||Tuition||Tuition $19,440||% Receiving Financial Aid 94%||Student Population 1,925||School Type Private||View School Profile|
|Location Gaffney, SC||Tuition||Tuition $23,400||% Receiving Financial Aid 72%||Student Population 3,139||School Type Private||View School Profile|
North Greenville University
|Location Tigerville, SC||Tuition||Tuition $16,200||% Receiving Financial Aid 46%||Student Population 2,689||School Type Private||
ConcentrationsView School Profile
Columbia International University
|Location Columbia, SC||Tuition||Tuition $18,540||% Receiving Financial Aid 50%||Student Population 966||School Type Private||View School Profile|
Coastal Carolina University
|Location Conway, SC||Tuition||Tuition $17,280||% Receiving Financial Aid 71%||Student Population 10,479||School Type Public||View School Profile|
There are many important considerations to make before settling on an online MBA program in South Carolina. These include factors discussed above like cost, accreditation, and available specializations. The following list includes some key steps to follow during the program research process for MBA options in any state.
Compare student outcomes data
Student outcomes include graduation rate, year-to-year retention rate, the average debt for a graduate from that school, and overall student satisfaction with their degree program. Student outcomes do not guarantee you will be satisfied with a particular program, but can be useful for pinpointing a school’s strengths and weaknesses.
Estimate the expected costs of your programs
Virtually every accredited college or university posts tuition rates online. Additionally, you should research other college-related costs like living accommodations and meal plans (if you plan to live on-campus), administrative fees, and technology fees (for online students). You should also look into scholarships, grants, and other forms of institutional financial aid that can offset some of the costs.
Check that classes will fit in with your schedule
Scheduling is critical for students with other important commitments, such as childcare or full-time employment. Many online programs are asynchronous, or self-paced; students in these tracks are free to complete course requirements on their own schedule. Synchronous programs, on the other hand, require weekly online meetings with teachers and fellow students.
Look for partnerships with local businesses
A large number of online MBA programs include internship and/or capstone practicum requirements ― and in many cases, students are able to gain on-the-job training and real-world office experience. You should look into the school’s business partnerships, particularly in regard to the industry you plan to enter after earning your MBA.
Make sure the program is accredited
Accreditation status should always be available and easily accessible on a school’s website. In addition to regional or national accreditation, some MBA pathways receive programmatic accreditation. Recognized programmatic accreditors for MBA programs include the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP) and the International Accreditation Counsel for Business Education (IACBE).
Talk to current students and/or recent alumni
You should contact the alumni office at each school you are considering and ask to be connected with former students. These individuals can be good sources of information about education costs, life on- and off-campus, local business tips, and other important details for aspiring MBA students.