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A Look at MBA Jobs and Salaries in Kentucky

Few, if any, postgraduate degrees provide the diverse career options of a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree. Many working professionals in Kentucky and around the world earn an MBA to pursue advancement within their organizations and industries. Others choose the degree for the professional and personal benefits, versatility and limitless possibilities it provides. Further, convenient options like the online MBA program from Northern Kentucky University (NKU) offer working professionals the flexibility they need to earn the career-advancing degree.

A Portal to Many Opportunities

According to a longitudinal study released in 2022 by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC), roughly half of surveyed alumni from graduate management education (GME) programs — such as the MBA — reported changing job functions after earning their degrees. Similarly, half of graduates shifted to different industries after finishing their GME program. These factors help demonstrate the career versatility GME like an MBA program can offer.

GMAC reports, “Most candidates hold positive views of their GME experience and consider their investment in GME as a positive return-on-investment.” Roughly 87% claimed their degree increased their employability. Further, more than three-quarters of survey respondents believed their education “prepared them for leadership positions, developed their professional network, and increased their earnings power.”

Nationally and globally, MBA graduates are well represented in the public and private sectors, as entrepreneurs and across industries. They often work in the technology, nonprofit, government, manufacturing, healthcare, energy, utilities, consulting, finance and accounting industries. Many hold positions of increasing authority in marketing, sales, operations, logistics and general management.

Major Industry Sectors in Kentucky

Kentucky — with its diversity of major industry sectors and the many jobs within them — is an ideal state for MBA graduates. Graduates have management opportunities in numerous industries, such as the following:

  • Primary metals
  • Food and beverage
  • Logistics and distribution
  • Plastics and rubber
  • Automotive
  • Aerospace
  • AgriTech
  • Healthcare

MBA Salaries in Kentucky

To provide a glimpse into employment and earnings potential in Kentucky, the following is a sampling of common jobs for MBA grads along with mean annual 2022 salaries in Kentucky, according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Keep in mind, BLS reports that the mean annual salary for all occupations in Kentucky was $51,490 in 2022.

  • Financial and investment analyst: $97,750
  • Management analyst: $95,040
  • Financial manager: $134,320
  • Sales manager: $120,420
  • Marketing manager: $136,190
  • Human resources manager: $115,920
  • General and operations manager: $91,740
  • Medical and health services manager: $107,990
  • Chief executive: $206,610

Kentucky Living

As an MBA graduate, your strong earnings potential in Kentucky is key to a high standard of living. Kentucky has a relatively low cost of living. Yet, vibrant cities like Louisville and Lexington make Kentucky a highly desirable place to live with a strong job market and a high quality of life.

Given that typical wages for MBA jobs in Kentucky far exceed the mean wage in the state, MBA graduates can expect upscale choices in housing as well as a comfortable level of discretionary funds with which to enjoy leisure activities. When you consider the career possibilities, earnings potential and the quality of life available to well-educated professionals in Kentucky, the case for earning an MBA in this state is strong.

Learn more about the NKU online MBA program.

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