Foster MBA students have access to state-of-the-art career coaching and a wide array of resources to help them achieve their future goals. Through an individualized approach to career development, MBA Career Management can help you form and skillfully execute career strategies that will optimize your success.
Employment Quick Stats (MBA 2016)
employed 3 months after graduation
average starting salary
average signing bonus
Graduate Salary Breakout (MBA 2016)
|Finance / Accounting||21%||$106,409|
|Marketing / Sales||32%||$110,186|
|Operations / Logistics||14%||$106,483|
|Pharm / Biotech / Healthcare Products||8%||$100,889|
MBA Career Management Office
Achieving your career goals requires initiative, effort, and focus. Foster MBA Career Management can help you reach those goals.
A Dedicated Team of Career Strategists
At Foster, you will find coaches who take a genuine, focused interest in your career and who know you by name. Our team members are seasoned professionals with corporate experience, career development expertise, and advanced degrees, including MBAs. They have worked across industries—from non-profit to financial services to consulting—with iconic Seattle companies like Amazon, Expedia, Microsoft, Nordstrom, and REI. They have strong relationships with key employers in the thriving Seattle business community and beyond, and access to a worldwide alumni network that’s over 50,000 strong. Along the way, they will be your sounding board and support network.
Resources and Services
The Foster School’s MBA Mentor Program was one of the first, and it’s still one of the best. The founder of this national model of mentoring, Susan Canfield, has become a nationally recognized authority on the subject. Watch MBAs and their mentors discuss the power of this unique program.
The MBA Mentor Program offers students the opportunity to learn about the way business is practiced today, under the guidance of top executives. Through participation in the Mentor Program, you explore career paths, obtain an inside view of industries, learn how executives meet difficult challenges, and gain insight into corporate strategy. Your experience with the Mentor Program helps you make better career choices and a smooth transition back to the business world upon graduation. Read the online brochure for more details.
If you are undecided about which area of business you’d like to work in, this section offers many resources for you to explore. With descriptions of specific roles, industry outlooks, competitive environments and more, you will be able to get a good picture of what it’s like to prepare for and work in a selected field.
Management consultants are architects of change. They tackle strategic and core operational issues and provide practical and innovative solutions that increase revenue, reduce costs, boost productivity, and streamline processes. They are experts in their field.
There are many types of consultants and consulting firms. Niche or boutique firms focus on a particular industry, such as financial services or health care, or specialize in recommending solutions for a specific area, such as consumer marketing or information technology. Larger firms provide a full range of management consulting services. Independent consultants specialize in a particular area.
Foster is abundant with opportunities that will help you decide if consulting is the right career path for you and, if it is, how best to prepare.
Business Analysis and Data Science
All MBA careers require the ability to use data effectively. However some roles are dedicated to scrutinizing data-based information to provide recommendations that assist senior leadership in making decisions. These positions are found in nearly all functions and industries. Some of the MBA titles you’ll come across are business analysts, digital marketing analysts, financial analysts, operations analysts and market research analysts.
Traditionally data analysts have been concerned with structured data from a single database source; however the use of unstructured data from multiple sources – “Big Data” – has given new depth and complexity to data analysis. Companies that have the technical capabilities to harness the multitudes of unstructured data need individuals who can ask the right business questions, analyze the resulting data effectively, and understand the appropriate statistical techniques.
Whether a business analyst or a big data analytics expert, these roles require business acumen, database and analysis skills, communications and presentation skills, and often some coding abilities such as SQL, or statistics software experience such as R or SPSS. Data scientists typically have Ph.D.s in Statistics or Computer Science.
Industry knowledge in a particular field is a plus, and may be required by some employers. Business and data analysts are found in all industries, from non-profits, government and education, to high-tech, finance, and consumer products.
Check out these on-line resources to learn more about the field of business analysis and data science.
Entrepreneurship & Venture Capitalists
Risk-takers, idea-mongers, passion-followers. Entrepreneurs dedicate themselves to creating viable businesses from their ideas or inventions. They are highly creative individuals who can imagine innovative solutions and profitably execute them. Involved in all aspects of the organization at any level, these energetic leaders know how to set vision and inspire teams. They are adept at creating opportunities for profit or reward and if successful, are catalysts for economic development.
If this sounds like you, you may be interested in starting your own business.
However there are other ways to be involved in entrepreneurship than starting your own enterprise. You may want to work in someone else’s startup, contributing to the development of an idea and growth of a business from the ground up. Or, you may be interested in more of an advisory or research role by working with a venture capital firm.
Check out these online resources to learn more about entrepreneurship.
If you work in finance or accounting, the bottom line stops with you. Your business advice can be crucial for the livelihood of an organization or an individual. You may be drawn to a career that centers on an organization’s financial workings or perhaps you enjoy the world of investments and stock valuations.
Corporate finance positions include finance manager, CFO, controller, and financial analyst. If you are more interested in working in investing, money management, or banking, there are a variety of analyst and advisory positions that differ depending on the area of expertise and the clientele served.
Check out the online sources listed below for more information about a career in finance.
If you enjoy growing a brand, product, or idea, a career in marketing may be for you. Marketing careers are diverse – there is something for just about everyone. If you enjoy working with numbers, designing graphics, planning strategy, managing projects, or crafting communications, you can find a role in marketing. Here are a few of the most common marketing positions:
Brand Manager: Typically a title found in companies that market consumer packaged goods, brand managers ensure consistent and optimal messaging, promotions, pricing, and advertising for a particular product or line of products under one brand name.
Marketing or MarCom (Marketing Communications) Manager: Managers in this role oversee and execute the communication/marketing strategy, which includes advertising and promotions plans.
Marketing Researcher/ Marketing Research Analyst: Marketing researchers collect and analyze data on consumer patterns, competitors, product features and other areas that inform marketing business decisions. Also see the Data Analytics career path.
Digital/Internet/Social Media Marketing Manager: In this role, understanding how to optimize internet, mobile, and social media channels for marketing purposes combines traditional marketing skills with knowledge of cutting-edge virtual marketing practices.
Product or Product Marketing Manager: Typically titles found in technical companies, a product marketing manager works with teams from product development to rollout and tends to be more customer-facing and communications-focused than product managers, who will primarily work internally to manage a product’s lifecycle from concept to launch. There will be some variation in this definition from company to company so do your research. To learn more about being a Product Manager in a tech company, read the section “What the Pros Say”.
Check out the online sources listed below for more information about marketing.
Operations management is the heart of an organization. It involves developing and managing the essential steps of any combination of the following: producing goods, quality control, quality management, managing the supply chain, facilities management, product formulation and design, ordering of goods, warehousing of goods, contacting vendors, and purchasing of external products.
Check out the online sources listed below for more information about operations.