THE LOWEST REPORTED BASE SALARY OF AN MBA THIS YEAR: $10,000 AT UCLA
Of course, looking at the extreme highs in pay can easily create unrealistic expectations. So it’s equally important to have a look at the other extreme: how little an MBA from a top school can make. More often than not, the lowest reported starting salaries are accepted by graduates who venture into the non-profit or social sector–or who take jobs with massive potential payouts at year-end. The year’s lowest reported salary: Just $15,000 for a University of Michigan MBA who went into “services.”
Yet, at several top schools there were plenty of grads who reported accepting jobs that paid $50,000 a year or less–far below the average pre-MBA pay of their classmates. A Fuqua MBA who went the social enterprise route accepted a $24,000-a-year job. An MBA in the Class of 2013 at the University of Michigan’s Ross School reported receiving a $15,000-a-year position in “services,” also presumably in the social sector. The lowest-paid Wharton grad walked out with a $30,000 job in an unknown field.
In a surprising number of cases, the lowest paid MBAs were not the non-profit types. At INSEAD, the lowest paid graduate in 2012 (the school’s commencement for its one-year MBA program is in December) was just $21,900 for a corporate planning job in media and entertainment in Asia Pacific. At Stanford, one MBA reported taking a $40,000-a-year job in consumer products and services, probably with a startup and a piece of equity. The lowest starting salary for the 5% of Stanford grads who went into the non-profit sector was $75,000, well above the lows in technology as well as media and entertainment. In fact, the high was a respectable $98,000 base. Nice work if you can get it, especially for a non-profit.
Highest Reported Base Salaries By Top Business Schools In 2013
London Business School $193,877 (Base salary) Finance
|Northwestern (Kellogg)||$375,000 (Base salary)||Investment Management|
|Pennsylvania (Wharton)||$350,000 (Base salary)||Unknown|
|Columbia Business School||$310,000 (Base salary)||Private Equity|
|Duke (Fuqua)||$260,000 (Base salary)||Energy/General Management|
|Chicago (Booth)||$250,000 (Base salary)||Private Equity|
|INSEAD||$247,000 (Base salary) **||Private Equity|
|NYU (Stern)||$237,600 (Base salary)||Hedge Fund|
|Stanford Graduate School of Business||$225,000 (Base salary)||Private Equity|
|Harvard Business School||$222,000 (Base salary) *||Private Equity|
|IE Business School||$182,800 (Base salary)||General Management|
|Dartmouth (Tuck)||$180,000 (Base salary)||Real Estate|
|Georgetown (McDonough)||$180,000 (Base salary)||Finance|
|Michigan (Ross)||$168,000 (Base salary)||Investment Banking|
|MIT (Sloan)||$165,000 (Base salary)||Private Equity|
|Emory (Goizueta)||$162,000 (Base salary)||Financial Services|
|Virginia (Darden)||$160,000 (Base salary)||Unknown|
|Carnegie Mellon (Tepper)||$160,000 (Base salary)||Consulting|
|Indiana (Kelley)||$160,000 (Base salary)||Unknown|
|UCLA (Anderson)||$160,000 (Base salary)||Law|
Source: Business school employment reports for 2013. Note: * Conservative estimate based on HBS only disclosing top 75th percentile of base. ** INSEAD data for 2012 due to December graduation date.
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