Best Undergrad Majors for Going into Business School

By Francine Fluetsch on January 13, 2017

This article is brought to you by Kaplan, the leader in test prep for over 90 standardized tests, including the GRE, GMAT, LSAT, and MCAT.

If you are planning to go to business school to get your MBA somewhere down the road, you want to make sure that your undergraduate major is going to help you get there and take that leap to your career goals. Sometimes, it can be a bit confusing to pick what to major in, since you will want something that gives you a large scope of knowledge for the field but that also caters towards a particular branch of what you will be honing in on (like accounting or business management, etc.)

So what should your undergraduate career contain to get into business school later down the road?

If you are lucky enough to know what you like right off the bat and you know that somehow involves business, then starting as a business major, a business administration major, an econ major, or even an accounting major would work perfectly. These aren’t automatically going to guarantee your acceptance into an MBA program, but with some hard work, good grades, and passionate papers as to why you should get in to pursue your higher business degree, graduating with one of these undergraduate majors can be very beneficial. These usually will give you a broader idea of any of the undergraduate fields that you can choose from, and should thus be able to help you pick an MBA program that sounds most appealing to you.

Okay, but those were obvious, right? While most MBA programs are looking for some sort of background in a business-related field, it doesn’t mean they won’t take other majors, so don’t be discouraged if you already majored in something else!

The great thing about higher education systems is that there is always time to change your mind. Majored in math but then suddenly realized the mathematician lifestyle wasn’t for you? No problem! MBA programs are willing to extend the olive branch to other majors besides one with the word business in them.

According to this article by Anne Chaconas, people who majored in engineering/natural sciences/technical disciplines/or math, have almost the same percentage of getting into top MBA programs as do those who majored in business administration. This is wonderful news for those of you who didn’t quite know what you wanted when you started your college journey, but have figured out along the way that you want a career in business.

The reason these MBA schools are willing to branch out is because they know that accepting students with different degrees will bring them students with different skill sets, all of which can be molded to be valuable in the business setting. Having a variety of students with different majors will allow businesses to be more innovative and open-minded since all of the employees will be coming from different educational backgrounds and will have a variety of helpful information to offer.

And to all you humanities majors out there who want to try your hand at an MBA, don’t feel like you can’t do it! MBA programs see the value that humanities majors can bring to the field and know that through all the papers you’ve had to write, you are probably well read and well versed in the essay spectrum, which is important in the business world as well. Creativity is always needed in the business world to make sure that businesses stay up to date with trends and stay one step ahead of the consumer so they will need your imagination to help keep their business going.

Now you might be wondering what I’m really trying to tell you. Is there actually a specific major that you need in order to have the highest chance possible to get into an MBA program?

The answer is that this field is awesome because variety is wanted and necessary, so as long as you kick butt at whichever major you choose, and can prove that it will be of value in the business world, you have a good shot at getting into an MBA program. Sure, business majors still are technically at the highest percentage of getting in, but the other majors aren’t as far behind as one would assume. This is great news, because whether you’ve known your whole life that the business world was for you, or you just recently figured it out, you have a good shot of getting into an MBA program if you work hard and fight for it.

To better your chances, make sure that you gain experience in the business world in any way that you can. Internships are stellar CV boosters, and while you don’t usually get paid, you do prove you are willing to put in the grunt work. Use your time during your undergrad or after you graduate to put in those hours and show how your chosen undergraduate major, whatever it may be, pertains to business through the experiences that you receive.

Learn more about Kaplan’s test prep options and start building the confidence you need for Test Day.

Hi! I'm Francine and I'm a fourth year Creative Writing major at UC Santa Cruz. I am one of the Campus life columnists on Uloop's National Team and also the campus editor for UCSC. I enjoy reading, writing, and taking selfies with my cat.

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