The Master’s Degree in Business Administration, or MBA, is one of the best college degrees available. It’s graduates have a lot of career flexibility. Whether in management, research, or any leadership role. This has made it one of the most popular graduate degree paths for people in business and non-profits today.

For those who are already established in their careers getting an MBA can unlock the next level in their careers. It can make the difference between remaining in middle management to taking the leap into C level positions in Fortune 1000 companies.

According to GMAC, 92 percent of MBA program alumni would still choose their MBA degree over not getting it. This just shows ho valuable an MBA degree truly is.

What Can You Do with an MBA?

Getting an MBA opens the doors for your career. Once you have it you can literally pick the path you want to take. Some common career paths including the following areas of business:

Operations
Accounting
Auditing
Strategy
Senior Executive
IT/IS
Finance

Benefits of an MBA

An MBA is more advanced than a business associate or bachelor’s degree, providing in-depth training in business management concepts and practices. GMAC found that 83 percent of full-time, two-year MBA graduates say their degrees were rewarding financially.

And that’s no surprise when typical salaries rise to around $440,000 a year for MBAs working in senior executive roles. It is also important to remember that the base salary for MBA graduates accounts for only about 76 percent of their total salary on average. Often the remainder of their compensation comes in the form of bonuses, stock options and other benefits.

Besides the knowledge, skills and earning power gained in an MBA program, one of the most important advantages of this degree is the professional network you can develop. You’ll meet your fellow students, professors, and industry contacts can be powerful allies in building your career.

Outlook for MBA Programs

While many other industries are reeling from technological advances, changing regulations and increasing automation, different types of changes are occurring in MBA programs.

For example, because of a downward shift in student demand, many smaller colleges are reducing or shutting down their MBA programs. There is a lot of growing concern over student loan debt. While the overall demand for MBA degrees is declining, applications are actually increasing among the top colleges.

And while some MBA programs have closed, online and blended MBA programs are still being offered by schools. Online MBA programs enable students to continue their work while pursuing their degree, offsetting financial concerns that might prevent some students from applying for a full-time degree.