When it comes to first-year compensation, there is perhaps no greater factor than the name of the school on your diploma. This is particularly true for U.S. MBA programs. For tech-minded students, there’s a short list of business schools that tend to grant starting salaries well over $100k.
Long known as the biggest feeder of high-paying tech jobs, it comes as little surprise that Stanford ranks at the very top of Bloomberg Businessweek’s latest annual rankings. Harvard’s place on the list is equally unsurprising. The real eye-opener is Wisconsin, which tied with Harvard as the second-best school for first-year compensation among tech employees.
Wisconsin only ranked as the 42nd best overall business school in the U.S., with its compensation figures in other industries falling well below the $130k average for tech. For example, Wisconsin Business School grads who took a job in finance earned a median salary of roughly $90k, well behind the $150k average for Stanford and Harvard MBAs. But Wisconsin appears to be your best bet in the Midwest for a high-paying tech job. And tuition is only around $38k, half that of Harvard.
The other mild surprise is UPenn’s Wharton, which typically ranks as one of the best business schools for careers on Wall Street. However, the sample size is much smaller at Wharton, where only 16% of graduates take jobs in tech. Roughly one-fourth of Stanford MBAs enter the tech sector after receiving their degree.
Perhaps the main takeaway is how well-aligned the compensation statistics were with the overall business school rankings. Only two schools ranked in the overall top 10 – Columbia and Cornell – didn’t rate as one of the best schools for compensation in tech.
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