Enrollment in distance learning programs in Mississippi has grown steadily in recent years, making the state a great place to earn an online MBA. In 2015, close to 6,000 of Mississippi's graduate students took classes exclusively online, up from just under 3,500 in 2012. Overall, more than a third of Mississippi's undergraduate and graduate learners take some distance courses.
According to a 2018 study from The Chronicle of Higher Education, only 5.8% of Mississippians hold a master's degree -- fewer than in most other states. The lack of highly educated workers in Mississippi may give MBA holders a competitive edge over other job seekers.
This page offers an overview of Mississippi's economy and lists the state's top employers, growing jobs, and key industries. Below, you can also learn about some managerial positions available to students who earn an online MBA in Mississippi.
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Careers and Salaries for MBA Graduates in Mississippi
Mississippi maintains a strong reputation for competitiveness in industries such as distribution and warehousing, forestry and energy, and shipbuilding. For example, Huntington Ingalls has built seven in 10 of the Navy's fleet of warships in Pascagoula, Jackson County. Furthermore, the state ranks fifth in the world for its investment potential for future oil and gas. While many of the companies that offer top jobs operate in major cities like Hattiesburg, Jackson, and nearby Memphis, career opportunities abound statewide.
The Mississippi Department of Employment Security (MDES) reports management occupations as the fastest growing profession in the state as of 2018, with an annual demand for more than 5,500 experts in the field. Other professions experiencing this kind of surge include healthcare practitioners and food preparation-related occupations. Online MBA graduates can take advantage of these statewide trends by leveraging their background and knowledge to enter jobs that make them indispensable to employers.
According to MDES, the state projects 5% employment growth by 2026, with employment in management occupations increasing nearly 8%. This anticipated upswing increases the likelihood that MBA holders may find employers actively recruiting professionals who possess expertise relevant to building Mississippi's economy.
|Company||Location||Main Industry||Number of Employees|
|Buffet at Beau Rivage||Biloxi||Resorts||30,000|
|Nissan North American Inc.||Canton||Automobile Manufacturing||6,300|
|Mississippi State University||Mississippi State University||Higher Education||4,000|
Source: Career One Stop
An MBA weds textbook learning and real-world studies to prepare you for a profession that puts your degree to good use. You might seek employment at large Mississippi companies or other organizations that leverage your talents to drive business success. Alternatively, you might enter a role within a nonprofit organization to help it operate with greater efficiency and effectiveness. Whether you follow the for-profit or nonprofit path, both can allow a rewarding career.
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Careers for MBA Grads in Mississippi
Budget analysts need at least a bachelor's degree, including coursework in statistics, economics, finance, and business. They help organizations track spending and organize their finances. Budget analysts often work for government agencies and educational institutions, helping to develop budgets, estimate future spending, and advise upper-level management on financial matters. They may also produce reports or review budget proposals.
Mississippi's budget analysts enjoy a mean annual salary of $62,940. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects 6% job growth for budget analysts over the next several years.
Accountants create and analyze financial documents for organizations in many sectors. Many work for accounting and bookkeeping companies, financial services firms, and government agencies, while some find work as independent contractors. They examine financial statements to ensure compliance with government regulations. Additionally, accountants may prepare tax returns, organize financial records, file documents with the Securities and Exchange Commission, or recommend cost-cutting measures to upper management. Some companies prefer to hire graduates of MBA programs with a concentration in accounting.
The BLS projects a 6% increase in accounting jobs in Mississippi in the coming years. As of May 2018, Mississippi's accountants and auditors take home a mean salary of $62,850 per year.
Top executives enjoy varying responsibilities depending on their organization, industry, and job title. Chief executive officers, for example, develop organizational policies, oversee departments, and make sure their firm meets overall goals. General and operations managers oversee activities that do not fall under another specific department such as sales or human resources. In general, top executives supervise staff, appoint managers, and ensure the long-term financial success of an organization. Top executives of large businesses typically hold an MBA.
According to the BLS, Mississippi's general and operations managers earn a mean yearly income of $77,800 as of May 2018. The BLS also projects a 7% increase in job growth from 2016-2026.
Administrative service managers support a business's operations by maintaining facilities, distributing mail, keeping records, and supervising administrative employees. In large organizations, administrative services managers may specialize in a particular area. Those working in smaller organizations typically take on a broad variety of duties. An administrative services manager's responsibilities may also include recommending new policies or setting deadlines.
Mississippi's administrative services managers are projected to experience a 7% increase in job growth in the coming years, exceeding the national job growth rate. As of May 2018, they enjoy a mean yearly salary of $80,410.
Human resources managers oversee compensation and benefits programs, hire new employees, and ensure that an organization uses its workforce effectively. They organize training programs, mediate employee conflicts, and take measures to create a productive and comfortable work environment. Human resources managers also supervise HR specialists and facilitate communication between an organization's management and its workers. Senior-level HR manager positions may require an MBA.
In Mississippi, human resources managers take home a mean annual salary of $90,680 as of May 2018. The BLS projects an 8% increase in HR management job growth in the state from 2016-2026.
MBA Concentrations for Mississippi Students
Many Mississippi online MBA programs provide options for students to focus their studies through a concentration area such as an MBA in finance, management, logistics, or information technology. While business students should choose a concentration that fits their personal interests and career goals, they should also consider the specialized skills and knowledge they may need to find a job in Mississippi. Students may decide to focus in an area related to Mississippi's major industries, which include manufacturing, aerospace, healthcare, agribusiness, and energy. With an accelerated MBA program, students in Mississippi can earn a degree in these fields in as little as one year.
For more information on MBA concentrations, head to to our specializations hub.
Mississippi's Online MBA Programs
Sifting through dozens of business schools can prove time-consuming, so consider starting your search with this list of online MBA programs in Mississippi. The list below can help you compare schools and ultimately find the perfect Mississippi MBA. As you read through the list, identify the program characteristics that interest you most.
All of the schools below have been reviewed and accredited by independent accrediting organizations. Check out this page to learn more about MBA program accreditation.
How to Choose a Quality MBA Program
Located in rural Claiborne County, Alcorn State attracts more than 4,000 students and offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in more than 50 areas of study. Its MBA program boasts accreditation by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs.
Alcorn State's fully online, asynchronous MBA provides students with comprehensive knowledge in all areas of business, including management, marketing, finance, and accounting. Students can concentrate their degree in gaming management or hospitality management. Full-time learners graduate in approximately 18 months to two years.
To apply, students must have completed their undergraduate study at an accredited institution with a GPA of at least 2.75. Applicants must also submit a GMAT score of at least 350 or a GRE score of at least 275.
Founded in 1883, Belhaven University -- based in Jackson, Memphis, Houston, and Atlanta, as well as online -- offers degrees in more than 70 areas of study. The school's faculty create and instruct courses from a Christian perspective.
Belhaven offers an accelerated online MBA with eight-week terms. MBA students may concentrate their degree in leadership, human resources, health administration, or sports administration. The curriculum consists of 36 core credits and an additional 5-10 credits of elective study. Sample courses include quantitative decision-making, principles of executive leadership, and ethical problems in business.
Applicants must have an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution and a cumulative GPA of at least 2.8. Transfer students can apply up to six accredited credit hours toward this MBA. Students who do not meet these requirements may apply for conditional enrollment and begin coursework on probationary status.
Delta State University hosts nearly 3,500 students and offers undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral degrees to learners all over the world. Founded in 1925 as a teachers college, DSU expanded into arts and sciences, nursing, business, and aviation, among others.
DSU offers a fully online MBA through its college of business and aviation. This integrated master of business administration (iMBA) program consists of three core modules: financial strategy, operational strategy, and strategic planning. Students concentrate their degree in human resource management, information systems, or healthcare administration. Classwork follows an asynchronous format.
To apply, students must possess an undergraduate degree in any field from an accredited institution. Applicants with a GPA of 3.25 or higher do not have to submit GMAT test scores. Students who have not yet taken the GMAT may receive admission as long as they have at least a 3.0 GPA and complete the GMAT within the first term of iMBA study.
In addition to its traditional brick-and-mortar campus, Jackson State University offers fully online courses through its JSUOnline platform. Online students follow the same curricula as on-campus students and interact with the same faculty. Distance learners also have access to counseling, advising, libraries, and other educational resources.
JSU's fully online MBA program develops students capable in applied business, economics, and business research. Courses include human relations and organizational behavior, managerial finance, and statistics for business decisions. Students can enroll part time or full time to complete the program's 30-33 credit hours.
Applicants must submit transcripts from all accredited institutions they have attended, GMAT scores from within the last five years, and at least three letters of recommendation.
Mississippi College boasts several titles: second-oldest Baptist college in the U.S., oldest college in Mississippi, and largest private university in the state (with a student population of more than 5,000).
This online MBA in Mississippi prepares students to excel in key areas of business, including finance, organizational behavior, economics, accounting, marketing, and statistics. To earn a generalized MBA, students complete 30 total credit hours. The accelerated format allows students to graduate in a shorter period of time than a standard MBA. Students without a business background may have to complete foundational courses.
Applicants must have an undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited institution with a GPA of at least 3.0. Students with a GPA of 2.9 or below must also submit GMAT scores or proof of relevant business experience.
Mississippi State University
Mississippi State, MS
Originally known as the Mississippi Agricultural & Mechanical College, Mississippi State University attracts a student population of nearly 22,000. This public research institution offers more than 180 undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral degrees.
Through its college of business, MS State offers a fully online MBA with a concentration in project management. Students can earn this degree asynchronously online or through a hybrid program, completing most classwork online and attending weekly sessions at the school's campus in Starkville.
Applicants must possess a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution and submit qualifying GMAT or GRE test scores from the last five years. Transfer students may apply up to six credit hours toward their MBA at MS State.
Mississippi University for Women
Also known as The W, Mississippi University for Women bears the title of the first women's college in the U.S. The school started to admit men in 1982. To this day, The W still emphasizes distinct educational opportunities for women.
Students may complete MUW's fully online MBA following either a full-time or part-time curriculum. Full-time learners take nine credit hours per term to graduate in 14 months, while part-time students enroll in three to six credits per term. This online MBA prepares students to become business leaders through coursework in advanced managerial accounting, cross-cultural management, and global marketing management. Prior to graduation, students must complete an exit examination.
Applicants must have an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution with an overall GPA of at least 3.0. The school may waive GMAT scores for students who completed the GRE prior to beginning their application to MUW.
University of Mississippi
Known as Ole Miss, the University of Mississippi sits in the heart of Oxford. The school also maintains satellite campuses in Jackson, Tupelo, Booneville, Grenada, and Southaven. With almost 24,000 students enrolled on-campus and online, this public research university is the largest postsecondary institution in the state.
Ranked by U.S. News & World Report as one of the top 25 best online MBA programs in the U.S., Ole Miss's fully online MBA follows the same curriculum as the on-campus program. Students access all learning materials online and complete assignments asynchronously. Most students graduate from the 36-credit program within two years, but part-time learners may complete the program in as many as six years.
The school accepts applications prior to start dates in summer, fall, and spring. To apply, students should submit qualifying GMAT test scores and undergraduate transcripts from an accredited institution.
University of Southern Mississippi
Informally referred to as Southern Miss, the University of Southern Mississippi is located in Hattiesburg, with a satellite campus in Long Beach. Founded in 1910 as a small teachers college, Southern Miss now hosts more than 14,500 students earning undergraduate, graduate, and doctorate degrees.
Students may complete Southern Miss's fully online MBA asynchronously, with no log-on times required in most courses. Since this program targets working professionals, most students opt to enroll part time, but full-time enrollment is available. Students who did not earn a business-related undergraduate degree must complete nine credit hours of core classwork. Sample classes include organizational behavior and leadership, analytical decision-making, and global economy. Students may also elect to add an emphasis in sports security management.
To apply, students must possess an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution and a GPA of at least 3.0.
Online MBA Programs in Surrounding States