Percentage of California students enrolled in online programs

MBA Concentrations for California Schools

As with many degrees, some MBA programs offer students the opportunity to choose a specialization in various areas. While the main coursework required will be the same, selecting a focus will allow you to take classes that will help you specialize in a specific business sub-field. Two of the most popular concentrations available for online MBA degrees in California are Health Administration and Information Technology. These may be completed in nearly the same amount of time as the usual degree, with only a few additional months needed for the most difficult specializations, such as engineering.

Health Administration

California is home is some of the most prominent healthcare facilities in the nation. According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the state had the highest employment level for medical and health services mangers in 2017. With 34,140 professionals in the field, the opportunity for employment as a director of a hospital, nursing home, or outpatient care center is promising. Students should expect to lean a variety of business, management, finance, and marketing techniques geared specifically toward these careers. Common coursework includes:

  • Current Issues in Healthcare Administration
  • Ethics and Decision Making
  • Law and Compliance
  • Health Information and Analytics

Information Technology

California is also a center for many world-class technology firms. According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistic, the state had the highest employment level for both database administrators and network and computer systems administrators in 2017. With over 50,000 professionals in these fields alone, the opportunities for employment as information technology directors, chief technology officers, and entrepreneurs are abundant. Students should expect to lean a variety of business, management, finance, and marketing techniques geared specifically toward technology-related careers. Common coursework includes:

  • Database Development and Applications
  • Electronic Commerce
  • Emerging Technologies
  • Business Process Analysis and Design

Accreditation in California

As you will quickly find out, no two online MBA programs are exactly the same. To ensure their programs meet certain quality standards, colleges and universities must undergo an accreditation process. Essentially, they must prove that their degree and each course follows the guidelines established by one or more accreditation organizations. Some of the most prominent international accreditation agencies include:

  • Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
  • The Association of MBAs (AMBA)
  • European Quality Improvement System (EQUIS)
  • The Distance Education and Training Council (DETC)

Of these, the AACSB is by far the most reputable organization. It does not, however, accredit many online MBA programs. For this reason, students looking for a quality program in California should consider colleges and universities accredited by the DETC. Students who complete an online MBA program accredited by either of these organizations will have little trouble finding employment within and outside of the United States.

An even better option is to attend a program accredited by a regional organization. Professionals who intend to work in California should consider institutions approved by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. This type of accreditation proves the program meets all necessary professional standards within the region and is accepted by employers across the nation.

The value of your degree, in terms of pay offered, greatly depends on the accreditation of the institution you select, regardless of whether you prefer a hybrid or on-campus program. Depending on your professional goals, you’ll likely want to avoid colleges and universities that are not accredited. Choosing a college or university with accredition for its online MBA program is important. Not only will it add credibility and value to your degree, but it ensures that you will graduate with the ability to work professionally internationally and/or within the United States. It’s highly recommended that you avoid institutions which have not been recognized as high quality by an international or regional accreditation agency.

Top Employers in California

Company Industry Headquarters Number of Employees
32nd Street Naval Station Government San Diego 25,000
UCLA Health System Healthcare Los Angeles 3,000+
Walt Disney Resorts and Parks Entertainment Anaheim 130,000 worldwide
Caltrans Transportation Sacramento 15,000

Careers for MBAs in California

As previously mentioned, there are numerous career opportunities for individuals with an MBA in California. While MBA graduates can usually find work in any industry, positions commonly deal with business management and finance. To give you a clearer understanding on some typical positions in the field, consider the following job descriptions.

Financial business analysts utilize internal and external client data to advise company administrators, especially when thinking about and making important financial decisions. These professionals often evaluate income statements, cash flow statements, and balance sheets to better predict how current financials will impact ongoing operations.

Financial managers are primarily responsible for monitoring spending, preparing financial reports, and making financial forecasts. They are often asked to research how the company can improve its overall profitability. In some cases, these professionals also provide valuable insight regarding potential expansions, mergers, and acquisitions.

Business development managers have two important responsibilities: identify beneficial opportunities for the company or establish relationships with potential clients. These professionals also find sales leads, manage marketing literature, and provide valuable information to customers about products and services.

Chief financial officers report directly to the president or chief executive officer of a company or organization and oversee all business finances. They are also responsible for finding funding, forecasting financial futures, managing potential risks, and reporting important data to the administration.

Accounting managers are in charge of managing a company or organization’s accounting department. They often develop any guiding financial principles and practices, as well as ensure procedures are being followed. These professionals are also responsible for monitoring and analyzing financial data and creating necessary financial reports.