2021 MBA Jobs: Record Pay & Placement At Michigan Ross

The Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan

Another Class of 2021 employment report, another set of school records and superlatives. The Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan released its new jobs numbers today (November 12), and like its peer schools, Michigan is happy to see the back of the chaotic year that brought coronavirus onto the scene.

Graduates of the Ross School’s full-time MBA program received the highest total median salary package in school history, $171,450, a 6% increase over the Class of 2020. The class’s median salary was $144,000, 6.7% up from last year. Despite many positives amid the 2020 pandemic, that Ross MBA class reported only a 4.6% salary increase over 2019’s graduates.

Placement rates, meanwhile, rebounded big time, with 97.5% of Ross MBAs receiving offers within three months of graduation (up from 90% last year), and 96.1% accepting; the latter is a 10-year-high and a nearly 9% year-over-year improvement. Especially gratifying for the Ross careers office was the success of international students, who reported an acceptance rate of 97.9% three months after graduation — after their prospects had cratered to 84.5% in the depths of Covid-19 last year.


Heather Byrne. Courtesy photo

Michigan Ross sent 60% of its Class of 2021 MBAs into consulting (35.1%, down slightly from last year) and tech (24.9%, up slightly). The MBB firms — McKinsey, Bain, and Boston Consulting Group — represented more than 50 hires between them, while Microsoft, Amazon, Google, Apple, and Dell accounted for nearly that many. Finance, meanwhile, saw renewed interest, with 15.5% of Ross MBAs going into that industry, up from just 11.9% in 2020.

Consulting offered the highest median salaries at $165,000, while bankers reported the highest median bonus, $47,500. International grads kept pace with a median pay of $137K compared to U.S. citizens' median of $150K. Overall, bonuses were flat at $30,000, but a remarkable 91.5% of grads reported receiving one. See page 2 for placement and salary details.

“We are proud of how our students achieved their career goals, rising to the challenge of virtual recruiting and earning placements in the companies and industries they wanted to be in around the world,” says Heather Byrne, managing director of the Michigan Ross Career Development Office. “We are excited to have new and innovative companies added to our Full-Time MBA students’ post-graduation career destinations, and I continue to be impressed with our office’s industry relations, coaching, and the professionally-coordinated peer support to help them land those opportunities.”


Ross MBAs historically go to work on the East or West coast or Chicago, though last year the number of those accepting jobs in those places dipped to 60%; in 2021 it rebounded to 74%. As at peer schools, a high number of jobs continued to be facilitated by the school's career's office or otherwise sourced on campus: 80%. And also not uncommon was the fact that the vast majority of 2021 graduates were career switchers: 94%. Only four Ross MBAs reported not seeking work because they planned to start their own businesses.

Internships for the Class of 2022 were included in the new employment report. The largest internship employers for Ross students in the summer were unsurprisingly in consulting and tech: five of the largest hiring companies were Bain, Amazon, EY/Parthenon, Deloitte, and McKinsey & Co.

“This year’s hiring and internship outcomes are testament to the strength, quality, and caliber of our full-time MBA students, and the versatile and adaptable leadership strengths they bring to any organization,” says Brad Killaly, Ross associate dean for full-time MBA programs.

See the next page for more data from the Michigan Ross MBA Class of 2021 employment report, and see the full report here

Questions about this article? Email us or leave a comment below.