Two Philly Business Schools Bring Best Return on Investment, Says Forbes

One set of MBA grads are making $200,000 just four years out of school.

(Ismagilov Shutterstock)

(Ismagilov Shutterstock)

The MBA class of 2010 was not a happy bunch. Job prospects were scarce, the economy was in shambles and many thought they’d wasted a hefty sum of money (and effort) getting their graduate business degrees.

But fast forward five years and things are different. The economy is improving and job prospects are much better — especially for highly talented MBAs. In fact, salaries for MBAs have climbed 9.3 percent over that time span, while the rest of the economy is lagging at just a paltry 1.4 percent.

So Forbes surveyed the class of 2010 to figure out if it was all worth it — and ranked the business schools based on return on investment. The publication used the following methodology: “We reached out 17,400 alumni at 95 schools around the globe. We compared graduates’ earnings in their first five years out of business school to their opportunity cost (two years of forgone compensation, tuition and required fees) to arrive at a five-year MBA gain, which determines the final rank.” (Click here for a detailed methodology).

The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania was best in Philly (and ranked seventh overall) with grads earning a “five-year MBA gain” of nearly $65,000. But the statistic that stands out is the 2014 average yearly salary of $207,000 — much larger than the pre-MBA average salary of $83,000.

Temple University’s Fox School of Business also made the list, ranking at No. 64. It had a “five-year MBA gain” of $3,300; a 2014 salary of $90,000 and a pre-MBA salary of $38,000.

For the second straight year, Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business ranked first with a five-year gain of $89,100 for graduates. “That’s down 11 percent compared to Stanford’s class of 2008, but still enough to hold off Harvard, which ranks second,” says Forbes.