Career Switch Using an MBA

Are you feeling unfulfilled or burnt out in your current job? Do you have your sights set on a higher position within your field but do not possess the requirements to go to the next level? Perhaps you are looking for a career switch altogether? No matter your thoughts on career switching, you are not alone! In fact, millennials are expected to switch jobs an average of four times within ten years of graduating with their bachelor’s degree. 

Career switchers often uplevel their roles within their current industry or make a sideways move to a new industry. However, higher-level positions can be difficult to obtain without the required expectations, and a lateral move may not yield the desired results. This is why many people considering a career shift enroll in a Master of Business Administration program, like what we have here at Crummer. MBA career switchers have also reported obtaining an MBA as part of their career change so that they can launch their own businesses.

Reasons Why You May Switch Careers

Career switchers opt for a career transition for a multitude of reasons. Life events can change our priorities. We may find a new passion or desire to learn new skills. Ultimately, there is no “right” or “wrong” reason to change careers. You may identify with these reasons that are often considered when making a career switch:

  • Needs Higher-Paying Positions. Simply put, some positions do not pay enough for the skill and experience needed to adequately fulfill the job description. This often sparks ideas for a career transition for career switchers seeking to make more money by utilizing their transferable skills to climb the corporate ladder and land a new, higher-paying role. 
  • Unable to Leverage the Skills. Most people looking for a career change are looking to expand their skill set. They feel motivated to do more in their career and want to expand their tools and resources to make that happen. 
  • Lack of Career Need in the Industry. As technology has shown us over the past several decades, certain jobs can become obsolete, or roles may fuse together, eliminating other roles. The lack of career needs in any industry is enough to spark a career change or seek MBA program options.
  • Realizing New Personal Goals. MBA career switchers may enroll in an MBA program envisioning an exit from the program with an ideal job position. We do not always foresee which points in our life will cause us to change course. Enrolling in an MBA program with sights set on a career switch can help you uncover deep-seated passions and give you the skills to take actionable steps toward making that dream a reality. What starts as a smooth roadmap may turn into a business venture you now have the skills to make a success.

How Can an MBA Help in Your Future Career?

A career transition is exciting, scary, and refreshing all at the same time. Enrolling in a master’s program can also feel overwhelming… Can you really use an MBA to improve your career path? The short answer is yes, but it requires some navigation on your end.


Switching careers is the perfect time to enroll in an MBA program. Most programs provide new experiences and connections that lead to new opportunities for students. They can also unearth your passions and newfound self-discoveries, as well as give you new skills to add to your professional and personal toolbox. 

Uncovering Passion

How many opportunities do we get in life to uncover our passions? It seems as if we wait for something external to give us permission to pursue the things that make up the core of who we are, most likely because we are led to believe that a successful career is not correlated with something we are passionate about. That what fuels our passion is not a step in reaching career goals. 


An MBA program is your permission slip to uncover your passion and turn it into a meaningful career switch. You can utilize the topics and skills taught in MBA programs to help you find your true occupational calling. 

Opens Multiple Possibilities

New ventures often bring new possibilities. This is typically true for MBA career switchers. MBA programs dive into teaching you new skills and fine-tuning the ones you already have. Through hands-on experiences within the program, you have the opportunity to discover where your preferences and motivations lie.


An MBA program can also give you the qualities that will help you land your dream job or provide you with resources to ignite the plan of starting your own organization. 


Chances are, you entered your career not entirely knowing where it would lead. Or perhaps you had a career path planned out, only to realize it is not what you wanted or does not align with your goals in life. We usually do not see big life changes coming and cannot predict the impact they will have on our career paths. Career transition calls for self-examination. 


You may think you want to attain a particular career goal, only to discover you want to change careers altogether. MBA programs give you the opportunity to explore the possibilities and opportunities you can gain for the rest of your career. If your chosen career ends up being something you no longer have your heart set on, an MBA gives you the ability to use your skills in a different capacity and in alignment with your career goals and passions.

Gain and Hone New Skills

MBA programs give you access to real-life experience in a variety of industries and roles. By combining the skills you have with the skills MBA students learn, you will be able to try them on for size to see if the field you are planning to switch to is truly the right fit for you. These skills and experiences can lead to connections that guide you along your new career path. You could also use this as an opportunity to find a career coach to help you test the waters of your career switch. 

Personal Development

MBA students typically have opportunities for internships in their desired fields. This is a great way to gain experience, practice skills, and decide if that is the right career switch for you. As stated in this article, most business schools have career services that can facilitate your internships or placements and help you map out a career that aligns with your career goals.


However, you have to be willing to put in the time and effort necessary to be fully equipped for your career switch. It takes a lot of work on the front end to complete an MBA program, create a new network, practice and hone skills, and transition into a new industry or role. An investment of time in your career switch is an investment in your long-term career goals — but persistence and dedication are key. Mapping out your future career will help you achieve your career goals while maintaining motivation.

Career Options with an MBA

Career switchers who join an MBA program are looking to leverage current and new skills in order to transition into a successful career that aligns with their career goals. Whether you want to start a new career in a new industry, begin your own startup, or climb the ranks to reach your dream job, MBA students have the knowledge and qualities that make them stand out to recruiters and open up to a variety of career options.


Ultimately, your MBA program provides you with everything you need to successfully change your career path and offers you a variety of opportunities. Your MBA experience can help you land new concentrations in your industry or a career switch into a new job, such as these job functions:

  • Entrepreneur
  • Business consultant
  • General manager
  • Operations manager
  • Account executive
  • Director
  • CEO

List of Schools with Great MBA Programs

 Whether you are looking for a part-time or full-time MBA program, an executive MBA program, or an in-person or online MBA program, you will find the business school that provides you with what you desire. With a plethora of business schools to sift through, we have created a list that will help you pinpoint the B-school that works best for you.

  • Crummer Graduate School of Business, Rollins College, Winter Park, FL
  • Kelley School of Business, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN
  • Booth School of Business, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL
  • Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
  • Graduate School of Business, Stanford University, Stanford, CA

Choosing an MBA Program 

Of all the decisions you make on a daily basis in life and in your career, thinking of what to look for when choosing an MBA program is easy to push aside. We understand that choosing a specific MBA program as a career switcher may leave your head spinning — especially if multiple business schools spark your interest. To help make your career transition smoother, we have compiled the top factors MBA career switchers should consider in order to attain the best MBA experience possible. 


    • Admissions. MBA admissions have a tendency to be quite competitive, as business schools select perfect-fit candidates. Before starting the MBA application process, go through your desired B-school list and ensure you fit the criteria for acceptance. Then, be prepared to present your GMAT scores and provide details on your work experience to incorporate into your personal statement. Depending on the program, they may require that you submit your official transcripts or letters of recommendation.
  • Admissions Consulting. Finding an admissions consultant may be a valuable investment for you. Admissions consultants can help you map out your career path and career goals and match you with the MBA program that will guide you toward a successful career. Your admissions consultant will help you select the business school that opens you up to the most opportunities by evaluating a variety of career services, including access to an MBA career coach, an alumni network, and job opportunities.
  • Program Length. Several factors influence how long it will take to obtain an MBA degree. One aspect is whether you choose an online MBA program or an in-person one. Another factor of program length is if MBA students opt for a full-time or part-time program. Most full-time MBA programs take about 24 months to complete, and some part-time programs can be completed in as little as 16 months or less. For more details about how long an MBA program takes, read this article.
  • Costs. The average cost of an MBA program is around $65,000. The most prestigious MBA programs may run a six-figure bill of more than $200,000, with the lowest tuition cost being around $12,000. Once again, there are several factors that go into determining the program’s cost, such as in-state and out-of-state tuition, online programs, the business school’s accreditation, and other fees. When evaluating the cost of MBA programs, you must also consider your return on investment. Most MBA graduates have a new job upon graduation and substantially increase their salary post-MBA.

Crummer Career Programs

If you are on the verge of a career switch and want an MBA program to guide your career transition, know that you have the chance at a successful career. No matter what reasons have led you to pursue an MBA, you can leverage the skills you learn and the people you meet in your program to help you pave the career path of your dreams. MBA graduates are opened up to ample career opportunities, and Crummer Graduate School of Business wants to help you choose the MBA that is right for you. 

Choosing a career transition is a brave step toward creating the career path you want — and the life you want. Whether you are a few years into your career and searching for more, wanting a lateral move, or going into a new field altogether, we can help you find the MBA program that fits your needs and your schedule. No need to worry if you have little to no work experience — our Early Advantage MBA is the right fit for you. Compare our MBA programs to take the next step toward your career switch!