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Did you know a business degree is the most popular type of degree in the U.S., accounting for 19 percent of college graduates in the country?

Business degrees are popular because they prepare students with the skills and credentials to jumpstart a successful career. Whether you enroll at a traditional four-year campus or in an online business degree program, an education in business can be incredibly valuable. Here are our top 7 reasons to earn a business degree.

1. Demand for Business Graduates is High

One of the main reasons business degrees are so popular is that business majors are in demand. Employers everywhere need employees with the skills developed in business programs.

Just take a look at the numbers. According to a recent Job Outlook Survey from the National Association of Colleges and Employers, 8 out of the top 10 degrees in-demand with employers right now are under the business umbrella. These degrees include finance and accounting, marketing, business management, and more.

In other words, after you graduate with a degree in business, you’ll have many opportunities to choose from as you start applying for jobs.

2. A Better Starting Salary

While salary is affected by various factors, such as location and experience, research shows that the average starting salary of a business major is $60,000 per year. This is one of the highest starting rates across all majors. So after you graduate, you’ll already be well-positioned to pay off student loans and save for the future.

3. Diverse Specializations

There are various business degrees to choose from, allowing you to tailor your education to fit your passions and talents.

Some common business majors include accountingfinancebusiness managementmarketing, economics, and more. There are more technologically focused business degrees as well, such as information systems, if that’s where your talents are. No matter the specialization you choose, you will have strong options for potential career paths.

4. Learn Industry Skills & Software

If there’s a specific career path you’d like to pursue within the business sector, a business degree will help prepare you with the industry skills and software knowledge that employers in your field demand.

For example, almost everyone is familiar with Microsoft Word. However, you may need to delve deeper into spreadsheet software like Excel, or project management software like Microsoft Project. Or, for example, if you choose to focus on technology, you might need to learn the basics of coding languages such as Python or JavaScript.

Whichever specialization you pursue, a good business program will prepare you with the knowledge and software skills necessary to succeed.

5. Sharpen Other Versatile Skills

While hard skills are important for any job, soft skills are also a vital part of any successful career. As a business major, you will develop many valuable and transferable soft skills.

Some of these skills include written and oral communication. Within any business, you will need to communicate frequently by email, explain your ideas in meetings, or give presentations to co-workers, management, and clients.

You’ll develop teamwork skills through group projects, which will be vital when collaborating on the job with a diverse group of individuals who have differing opinions and backgrounds. You’ll also develop skills in project management, self-motivation, strategic thinking, analysis, and problem-solving.

6. Networking Opportunities

Because majoring in business is so popular, a business degree also provides you with a large network of classmates to build relationships with. Today’s classmates and project partners are tomorrow’s connections and coworkers. Colleges often have professional networking groups and alumni associations, making it easier than ever to make connections before you even enter the workforce.

7. Online Education Options

If you’re trying to earn your degree while working a full-time job, it isn’t always feasible to pursue your education at a brick-and-mortar institution. Attending in-person classes at a set time several days per week might be difficult to fit into your work schedule. Additionally, commuting to and from campus will also soak up valuable time.

Luckily, there are high-quality online business degree options available that are often more affordable. These flexible programs are great for everyone, whether you’re looking to complete your bachelor’s degree, or want to pursue a master’s degree with the ambition to take on a leadership position and advance your career.

The Future is Bright for Business Graduates

No matter the career path you choose, you can’t go wrong with the versatility of a business degree.

Download our Business Career Guide