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Degrees

Part of Western Governors University

February 1, 2019

Business

The best degrees for entrepreneurs.

What traits make a successful entrepreneur? The good ones march to their own beat. They jump on trends before the pack and seize opportunities that make others squirm. They are charismatic and inspiring. They have passion, courage, and exceptional business instincts.

A myth, however, is that a college education doesn’t make a difference – despite what the careers of famous-dropouts like Gates and Jobs might lead us to believe.

In fact, entrepreneurs are more likely to have at least a bachelor’s degree than the rest of the nation. According to the US Census Bureau, 44 percent of business owners have a bachelor’s degree or higher, compared to about a third of the general adult population.

Here’s a list of degree programs well-suited for those exceptional folks with the entrepreneurial spirit:

Female entrepreneur

Marketing management.

The first step to making profit is getting the word out about what your company does. To build brand awareness and attract customers, you need to know how to spread your message. A marketing degree will teach you how to convey the advantages of your product or service to your target audience. You’ll learn the art and science of creating a brand, spotting competitive advantages, and using a variety of media to reach customers.

Accounting.

Smart money management is an important part of running a business, but it can tricky territory to navigate. For entrepreneurs, a strong understanding of accounting can give them a leg up on their competitors.

Those who’ve earned a bachelor’s in accounting know how to use Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP), ledgers, and journals to perform tasks to keep companies on sound financial footing. A bachelor’s degree is also the first step toward CPA certification.

Business management.

What should aspiring entrepreneurs do when they have great ideas but need to build their business acumen? A business management degree program teaches the foundational skills needed to run a successful company. Those include strategy, communication, and ethics. Graduates have a powerful understanding of organizational behavior and operational principles necessary to achieve results.

Master of business administration (MBA).

The best business leaders never stop sharpening their skills, and a Master of Business Administration is a great way to take your talents to the next level.

Commonly known as an MBA, that degree is excellent for individuals who want to further develop their knowledge of business, management, and strategy. It emphasizes the principles of effective management and leadership that maximize performance and improve the bottom line. MBA’s are graduate-level degrees; if you earn one, you’ll stand out and be well-equipped to conquer the world.

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