The 5 Best Online MBA Programs in Louisiana
| OnlineMBA.com Staff
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More than 90,000 residents of the Bayou State hold management positions. These professionals earn an average annual salary of just over $100,000 — far above the national average for all occupations.
As aspiring managers, MBA students build knowledge and skills in finance, accounting, marketing, management, and human resource development. Because of Louisiana's flourishing casino and hotel industries, students can find lucrative job opportunities by concentrating their business studies in hospitality and gaming management. The state is also home to leading companies in transportation, tourism, and trade.
Affordable and flexible online MBA programs in Louisiana can help midcareer managers break into lucrative positions. An accelerated MBA requires just 1-2 years of study, and degree-seekers can take courses full or part time. By perusing our ranking of the best online programs in Louisiana, prospective MBA students can find the right program for them.
Why Get an Online MBA in Louisiana?
An MBA program provides many benefits. Degree-seekers can learn about business, improve their professional standing, expand their networks, and figure out the next steps in their careers. Many MBA-holders also enjoy increased earning potential. Specific benefits of enrolling in an MBA include:
- Improved Skills
- Enrollees can raise the value they bring to their employers by building skills in leadership, management, finance, and marketing. These skills also make MBA graduates valuable in the larger marketplace.
- Enlarged Professional Network
- MBA graduates gain access to their school's alumni network and make valuable professional connections. Studying in an MBA program introduces students to executives, mentors, and guest lecturers, who can help accelerate students' careers after graduation.
- Increased Career Opportunities
- The MBA has long been the gold standard of business education. Holding an MBA can set business leaders apart from their peers when interviewing for advanced positions. Top companies even recruit emerging leaders from MBA programs at well-regarded schools.
Louisiana offers several advantages for MBA students. For instance, learners studying supply chain management, international business, or hospitality and gaming management can access many internship and job opportunities in the Pelican State.
Some of Louisiana's online MBA programs offer prior learning credit options for enrollees with previous certifications or graduate degrees. Prior learning options can help shorten students' time in the program, saving them money and landing them new careers or promotions more quickly.
The state is home to both public and private schools, large and small institutions, and faith-based and non-sectarian colleges, making Louisiana an ideal location for nearly any prospective MBA student.
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What To Expect From MBA Programs in Louisiana
Every business school offers students a unique experience. These variations include each institution's curriculum, experiential learning requirements, and networking opportunities. Still, most online MBA programs in Louisiana share several characteristics.
For instance, online students usually take 1-2 years to finish an MBA program. For students in a 36-credit degree, that equates to one new class every 6-8 weeks or 2-3 courses per traditional term. Accelerated MBAs require even less time; some take less than a year to complete.
Most MBA programs offer courses asynchronously, which allows students to study at their convenience. Some programs may use synchronous coursework or learning experiences, which require live virtual engagement with faculty and peers.
Almost all MBA programs blend business and leadership coursework with classes in accounting, finance, and human resources. Many online schools in Louisiana also offer specializations such as marketing or finance.
Admission Requirements for MBAs
Most MBA programs require applicants to hold a bachelor's degree. Some schools require a business major, but others accept an undergraduate education in any subject. Applicants generally need a minimum 2.5-3.0 GPA. Institutions may require standardized test scores like the GMAT or GRE.
Other online MBA programs in Louisiana may accept only degree-seekers with several years of professional experience. At some schools, three years of experience plus a high GPA may qualify applicants for test score waivers.
To apply, prospective students should submit all application materials, which typically include a resume, transcripts, letters of recommendation, test scores, and an essay. Many schools offer multiple application deadlines per year for maximum flexibility.
The best online programs in Louisiana offer an array of specializations plus a core curriculum of business and leadership classes. Concentrations allow students to strengthen their knowledge and skills in a single area of business leadership.
Popular MBA specializations include strategy, entrepreneurship, corporate finance, and information technology. Degree-seekers who aspire to top executive roles can choose an MBA in strategy or strategic management. Prospective finance professionals can select a finance or accounting specialization. Students who want to create their own business can pursue an entrepreneurship concentration.
Because of Louisiana's gambling and tourism industries, some MBA students pursue a hospitality and casino management specialization. This concentration prepares future leaders in hotels, casinos, and gaming facilities to meet the unique organizational, marketing, and legal challenges their industry faces.
Popular MBA Program Courses
Though curricula vary by school, nearly all MBA programs in Louisiana include a similar array of core business courses and a final project or capstone. Typically, students complete required foundational classes before focusing their studies in areas like marketing, data analytics, and hospitality management. Classes students might expect to encounter in an online MBA include:
Students in this course explore the intersection of business strategy and human resource management. Upon completion, learners understand the core human resource competencies required for successful personnel management. Topics include compensation, employment law, ethics, performance management, and strategic planning in human resource management.
Important for Louisiana's tourism-driven economy, hotels and resorts require distinctive management knowledge and skills. In this course, students learn about the challenges of leadership in this sector, particularly in organizations associated with gaming facilities. Topics include operations, strategy, products, human resources, financial controls, and legal concerns for resort and casino management.
This course considers how group behaviors, individual motivations, and organizational processes affect change management in organizations. Students learn to apply the concepts of organizational behavior to solve management problems ethically. Coursework often includes case studies, self-assessments, journal readings, lectures, and discussions.
Students learn theories and strategies of communication. They study how communication strategies influence organizational decision-making. Topics include crisis management, social media, conflict management, news media, and interpersonal communication in organizational leadership communication.
The MBA Capstone or Thesis
An MBA usually concludes with a cumulative learning experience, either a capstone or a thesis.
In general, the capstone requires learners to complete a practical project like a case study or consulting with a local organization. These projects demonstrate students' ability to integrate the knowledge and skills from the program in real-world settings. A thesis, on the other hand, is usually a longer academic paper that requires learners to synthesize course knowledge with original research. Typically, capstones and theses take 1-2 semesters to complete.
Since an MBA is a practice-oriented degree, most programs conclude with a capstone. Learners in Louisiana can engage with businesses in the state's robust tourism, trade, transportation, and supply chain sectors. Online learners who live in other states can usually conduct a capstone project at an approved business, nonprofit agency, or educational institution near their home.
How Much Do MBAs Cost in Louisiana?
Online MBA programs in Louisiana vary in cost. According to 2019 research by OnlineMBA, tuition for popular online MBA programs ranges from $12,800 to nearly $40,000. Though outliers, some MBA programs end up costing six figures.
Although many factors affect the price of an online MBA, in-state public schools are generally more affordable than out-of-state or private institutions. Online schools sometimes charge in-state tuition for all learners, regardless of state residency.
Prospective students need to consider more than just tuition when calculating the total cost of their degree. Online MBA programs, for example, usually require students to buy textbooks, software licenses, and high-speed internet to complete coursework remotely.
Degree-seekers should investigate financing options that can make an expensive degree much more affordable. Scholarships, fellowships, private grants, student loans, and support from employers or military/veteran agencies can help cover the cost of an online MBA in Louisiana. The link below provides more information about financial aid options for business school.
What Jobs Can MBAs Get You?
Because MBAs teach skills that apply in many industries, employers often specifically seek job candidates with MBAs. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), many of the highest-paying management careers across sectors need the skills and knowledge that an MBA can provide.
For example, financial managers, computer and information systems managers, and marketing managers can all earn lucrative salaries. In Louisiana, industries such as trade, transportation, and tourism thrive along the coast. Companies in these sectors look for leaders with skills in finance and technology.
Not all leaders work in for-profit companies, though. Some, such as emergency management directors, hold employment in nonprofit and government agencies. In hurricane-prone Louisiana, these professionals enjoy especially high pay for their work.
Top executives work together to serve as the senior leadership team of a company, nonprofit organization, or educational institution. Each executive typically leads a department such as finance, marketing, sales, or product development.
These professionals plan, coordinate, and oversee the information technology department of a company. Sometimes called IT managers, computer and information systems managers may hold positions like chief information officer, chief technology officer, or IT security manager.
Sales managers lead teams of sales professionals. These leaders set goals, analyze sales data, and provide training and oversight for their teams. Sales managers may recruit new team members, assign territories, and support struggling sales professionals. Both business-to-business and business-to-consumer agencies hire sales managers.
Emergency management directors plan and execute responses for emergencies, including natural disasters. Particularly relevant to Louisiana, a state that often experiences devastating hurricanes, emergency management direction presents an opportunity to serve the community. These professionals often work for local or state governments.
Responsible for an organization's overall financial health, these professionals develop financial plans, direct investments, and create financial reports for senior leaders. Financial managers often work closely with top executives to provide critical organizational data. Most financial managers work in the finance and insurance industries, and many positions require professional certification.
Louisiana's Top MBA Employers
According to U.S. News & World Report, Louisiana ranks at or near the bottom of states for growth, business environment, and employment. Even so, both New Orleans and the coast continue to attract large numbers of tourists each year. Consequently, the hospitality, supply chain, and shipping industries flourish in Louisiana.
Companies in these sectors need leaders and managers with the skills an online MBA in Louisiana confers. According to the BLS, Louisiana employs 90,880 managers and 73,590 business and finance professionals. MBA graduates can pursue high-paying jobs in these industries, including top leadership positions and careers in investment banking and software development management.
Prospective MBA students who plan to work in Louisiana can pursue concentrations in supply chain management, finance, information technology, or information security to land lucrative jobs. The state's proximity to the Gulf of Mexico makes it an ideal location for shipping, trade, and tourism companies. Consequently, recent graduates from online MBA programs in Louisiana may want to look for positions in Lake Charles, Lafayette, Baton Rouge, or New Orleans.
Top MBA Employers in Louisiana
With offices in 30 countries and more than 3,000 employees, Future Pipe Industries delivers water and energy to people around the world. The corporation builds pipes, provides engineering services, and manages projects. Business graduates can join Future Pipe Industries' Future Class Graduate Program, which provides a one-year professional rotation between three jobs in the company.
Entergy's 13,000 employees help build and service power plants in Louisiana and surrounding states such as Mississippi and Texas. The company harnesses natural gas, sunlight, and hydroelectric power to supply its customers. Entergy employs MBA graduates to manage technology teams, conduct business analysis, and lead energy distribution initiatives.
Formerly called CenturyLink, Lumen provides internet, TV, cloud computing, and network infrastructure on a single platform. The enterprise serves residential customers and businesses. Due to its expansive operation, Lumen hires people for many positions. The company particularly seeks MBA-holders with experience in sales leadership.
Selecting Your Louisiana MBA Program
While our rankings are a great place to begin the search for an online MBA in Louisiana, prospective students should consider many other factors, including:
- Accreditation ensures a school meets standards of academic excellence. Accreditors can offer regional, national, or programmatic accreditation. Between regional and national accreditation, regional accreditation is considered the more prestigious institution-wide certification. In Louisiana, the regional accrediting body is the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. Programmatic accreditation examines the curriculum of specific programs to determine how well they prepare students for jobs in the field. There are several business-related programmatic accrediting agencies, including the International Accreditation Council for Business Education.
- Cost and Financial Aid
- Prospective students should consider tuition, fees, and other educational expenses when determining a school's cost. Equally important to consider are the school's financial aid packages, scholarships, and employer tuition remission.
- Most MBA programs include concentrations. Prospective learners should apply to schools with specializations that align with their personal and professional goals.
- Program Length
- Some MBA programs take just 10-12 months to complete, while others may require up to three years. Longer programs often come with higher overall investment costs, but shorter programs include a more demanding study schedule.
- Alumni Network
- A robust MBA alumni group can help new graduates make valuable connections in the business world, which can lead to lucrative opportunities at companies across Louisiana.
Why You Should You Consider Online Schools in Louisiana
Even before the COVID-19 pandemic moved many schools online, remote education was growing rapidly, partially because online learning is accessible, affordable, and flexible for students with family and career obligations. The National Center for Education Statistics, a data-tracking agency within the U.S. Department of Education, reported that nearly 7 million students (35.3% of all learners) enrolled in at least one online class in fall 2018
The MBA is particularly well-suited for online learning because modern distance education platforms support the collaborative models used in many MBA classes. MBA courses rarely require in-person experiences like labs, which can make earning a degree online challenging.
Since most MBA students are working professionals, online course delivery allows for flexible engagement with course materials. Working professionals often possess the perseverance, self-discipline, time management, and problem-solving skills necessary for success in distance education.
While online degree-seekers can enroll in programs anywhere in the country, Louisiana residents may want to consider prioritizing schools in their home state. The Bayou State is home to well-respected public and private institutions that may reward residents with tuition incentives for studying in the state.
Online MBA Programs In Nearby States
Frequently Asked Questions
Are online MBAs still relevant?
Yes. An online MBA in Louisiana is a great choice for working professionals. Many employers now value online degrees equally to those earned on campus.
How much does an MBA cost in Louisiana?
Business school costs vary widely. Public institutions often provide the lowest priced degrees for state residents and online learners. Louisiana students may pay $10,000-$100,000 for an MBA.
Is getting an MBA online worth it if you have a business degree?
Sometimes. Anyone in a leadership or management role can benefit from earning an MBA online. That said, not all programs offer the same benefits. Prospective students should carefully weigh the pros and cons of a degree before investing their time and money.
Which MBA has the highest salary?
The fields of finance and technology offer some of the highest-paid positions available for business professionals. Online MBAs in Louisiana that emphasize finance or strategy can help students prepare for management careers in these areas.
The Best Online MBAs in Louisiana
Whether you live on the Gulf Coast or on the other side of the country, pursuing one of the top online MBA programs in Louisiana can help take your business career to the next level. Our ranked list spotlights Louisiana's best MBA programs
Every school listed below holds regional accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). An important form of quality assurance, accreditation provides an independent evaluation of academic standards.
Each ranked degree also holds subject-specific accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). Less than 5% of business schools worldwide achieve this recognition.
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