Bringing the Economy Home

Fewer Idahoans Set Sights On M.B.A. Degrees

Joe Jaszewski / Idaho Statesman

Boise State University opened its new business building this fall.

*We originally reported fall enrollment is down this year compared to last in Boise State University’s M.B.A. program, when in fact enrollment has increased from 119 full and part time students in 2011 to 139 full and part time students.

For the fourth year in a row, the number of applicants for two-year, full-time M.B.A. programs declined this fall.  That’s according to an article from the Wall Street Journal.

The organization that administers the Graduate Management Admission Test, the Graduate Management Admission Council, surveyed 359 graduate business schools worldwide.

The Wall Street Journal writes:

The median number of applications world-wide fell 22 percent in 2012 for the two-year degrees, after a nearly 10 percent decline last year. For many programs, the losses are off of multiyear highs that occurred as young professionals sought refuge and new skills in academia amid the financial crisis. But prolonged economic uncertainty is leaving many prospective students wary of the significant investment of both time and money required for a two-year, full-time program. –

In the U.S., 62 percent of schools who responded to the survey reported a decline in applications to their two-year M.B.A. programs, according to the WSJ.

Applications to the Columbia Business School dropped 19 percent this year, after steady growth over the last four.  Meanwhile, University of California, Los Angeles’s Anderson School of Management says applications were up 22 percent this year.

No Idaho schools participated in this year’s survey.  But, the Graduate Management Admissions Council does have data on the number of Idahoans who took the GMAT, the qualifier for getting an M.B.A.  Fewer Idahoans took the qualifying test for the 2010-2011 school year than the previous year.  But the number of Idahoans who took the test in 2010-2011 is still greater than the number of pre-recession test takers.

Data Source: Graduate Management Admissions Council

Boise State University opened a brand new business building this fall.  Enrollment in BSU’s M.B.A program increased this semester.  There are 139 full and part time M.B.A. students at BSU this fall, compared to 119 last fall.


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