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Is a business undergrad degree worth it?

A photo of crazlunatic crazlunatic
Is a business undergrad degree worth it?

I ask this because I feel like a business undergrad does not really teach you any concrete skills. It seems to touch upon basics of business, unless you have decided to specialize in something specific such as accounting. Other than that, it does not seem like something such as engineering where you are earning solid skills that you are sure to use in the workplace.

Quite simply put, I believe doing well in a business school does not equate to getting a good/high-paying job and being successful. Whereas, if you had high GPA for your engineering class, you will very likely be hired into a big company and earn an above average and well paying salary. Is this ideology true?

Another point I took notice to is that often times, there are people who get a degree such as Mechanical Engineering or Computer Science, who then use these skills to push them forward in their career, and progress towards an MBA. But you will never see it happen the other way around. In this sense, is the business undergrad not disadvantaged, being short of an additional skillset and only having business knowledge without any other further technical skills?

I can't be the only one thinking this.
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A photo of MINTOK MINTOK
You have a solid argument and the answer to your questions lies and the business school and specialization you chose as well as the effort you put in. :)

You're right, one doesn't really need business as an undergraduate degree if he/she wants to get into a field (for example, engineering) and then make it to the management level in that company.

However, if one wants to be in capital markets, wealth management or in high end accounting (all of which pay far more than engineering on average), undergraduate business degree is a must (CA and CFA require a lot of courses which make up a business degree and those courses carry a lot of knowledge one will apply in earning the designations and the position in the future).

Personally, I think accounting is the most worthwhile undergraduate degree because it opens door to any company in any industry. It's very easy for an accountant to grow to the executive level because every company needs someone at the top who understands its financial position and that's what accountants do. Accounting background allows an easy switch to the capital markets in the future if one desires to get into it. :)
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A photo of immaculatedx immaculatedx
While it's true many engineers and such get their MBAs and move into fields like finance and management later on, if your passions lie in business, just do a business undergrad. Life's too short to do what's supposedly right and proper for your academics and your career.

If you're interested in both, study a broad disciple of engineering (Not something specific like chem eng, mech eng, civil eng, etc.) and you'll have lots of options to move into business/management roles later whether you pursue your MBA or not.

I agree with a lot of Mintok's points. If you're looking for solid skills in undergrad B School, an accounting major is the way to go. However, you'll see the most ambitious (IMO) business students pursuing solely finance (IBD, VC, PE, HF, Consulting) in places like Ivey and QC though.

And about marks, while it's true your marks may matter less when getting internships out of B School, they definitely do matter. For example, marks in Ivey are king, the top 10-20% of the students in terms of GPA will always get the best companies request interviews. Of course after that though, things like fit, likeability, personality usually matter far more but if you don't have the marks you'll never make it to the interview stage.

Hope that helps.
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