Abutting four of the five Great Lakes, Michigan is widely considered one of the most beautiful states in the American Midwest. It has the world’s longest freshwater coastline, and about half its surface area is forested. Large cities, including Detroit, Grand Rapids, Ann Arbor, and Lansing, thrive amid its rugged beauty. With a population of about 9.93 million as of 2016, Michigan ranks as America’s 10th most populous state.

The University of Michigan and Michigan State University systems are the state’s two largest public higher education institutions, and both offer a wide range of highly regarded online programs. The long-serving center of the American automotive industry, Michigan’s economy is in a transitional state of diversification, making it an intriguing prospect for individuals interested in earning an online MBA in Michigan.

Michigan is home to 93 accredited colleges and universities, with Michigan State University being its largest public higher education system and Flint’s Baker College ranking as its largest private degree-granting institution. Thirteen schools currently offer a hybrid or fully online MBA in Michigan, with program lengths ranging from 12 to 36 months. Wayne State University, the University of Michigan, and Lawrence Technological University both offer highly regarded online MBA programs in Michigan. Wayne State University leads the way in terms of online MBA specializations, with 12 available degree concentrations.

For in-state students, tuition for a Michigan online MBA program can be around half the cost paid by out-of-state students, giving Michigan residents a strong incentive to study locally. Studying online also offers an overall cost benefit by eliminating many of the non-tuition costs and fees associated with traditional programs, while delivering the flexibility to attend virtual classes anytime and anywhere. Some Michigan businesses also offer tuition reimbursement packages to employees who pursue MBA degrees part-time while continuing to work.

Several Michigan online MBA programs have on-campus requirements, which candidates should research and consider when applying to business schools. Most Michigan-based MBA programs also have GMAT requirements, with some exceptions including Baker College, Spring Arbor University, Walsh College, and Kettering University.

Percentage of Students Enrolled by Distance Education
Percentage of students enrolled at Title IV institutions in Michigan, by distance education enrollment status, Fall 2012

MBA Concentrations for Michigan Students

While many different specializations are available to students pursuing an online MBA, Michigan has particularly strong automotive and manufacturing industries, and is emerging as a regional leader in information technology. Of course, students are free to pursue any specialization they like, but MBA concentrations such as supply chain management and information systems/technology management are especially applicable. The state’s economy is continuing to diversify away from its traditional reliance on automobile production, but Detroit’s Big Three automakers remain among the state’s strongest and largest companies.

  • Supply Chain Management: This concentration examines the impacts of globalization on procurement and business supply chains while preparing students to meet rapidly changing consumer demand patterns for products and services. It leads to careers in marketing, operations, global business, strategic planning, and risk management.
  • Information Systems/Technology Management: Often pursued by experienced professionals seeking to upgrade their existing technological skills, this specialization highlights the changing and increasing roles of IT and technology in the workplace. It prepares students for careers in strategic planning, project management, and systems analysis.

Accreditation in Michigan

Accreditation is a quality assurance system that ensures higher education programs meet important professional and academic standards. Online MBA programs in Michigan are accredited on a national and/or regional level. In general, national accreditation programs apply to for-profit schools, while regional accreditation programs are oriented toward state-operated, nonprofit, and degree-focused institutions. Of the two types, regional accreditation is generally considered more prestigious.

Most Michigan colleges and universities received their accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission, a regional accrediting body focused on the Midwest. Advanced degrees from accredited institutions are particularly valuable, as they are statistically proven to lead to higher earning potential and a wider range of career opportunities. For those with an online MBA, Michigan offers a diverse and dynamic range of opportunities thanks to recent innovation-driven changes in its economy.

After being hit hard by the economic recession of 2008, Michigan’s economy has staged a dramatic turnaround in recent years. Traditionally led by manufacturing, agriculture, and tourism, Michigan’s economy now focuses strongly on technology as part of its recovery, and is embracing innovation as it continues to diversify. Other entrenched industries, including mining, aerospace, military equipment production, and furniture production, also continue to be major drivers of the state’s economy.

The state’s Big Three automakers have returned to their longstanding roles as pillars of economic stability, and key indicators including employment rates and industry-specific data show strong, continued growth across Michigan. Data released in 2016 indicates that the state has a lower unemployment rate than the national average, with recent job growth and projected future job growth both outpacing the national averages.

Michigan’s top labor markets include Detroit-Warren-Livonia, the Ann Arbor Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), the Lansing-East Lansing MSA, the Grand Rapids-Wyoming MSA, and the Kalamazoo-Portage MSA. As of 2017, unemployment rates were declining in all 17 of the state’s regional employment markets.

Top Employers in Michigan

Company Industry Headquarters City Number of Employees
General Motors Automotive Detroit 215,000
Ford Motor Company Automotive Dearborn 201,000

Statistics reported in 2015 indicate that the median income among the 3.86 million households in Michigan was $51,084. Based on that income data, students in online MBA programs in Michigan transition into careers that pay significantly higher-than-average salaries.

Online MBA programs in Michigan offer the potential for students to realize outstanding returns on their education investments. Graduate-level academic credentials have direct statistical correlations with higher salaries, and MBA degrees consistently rank among the most valuable degree designations available in terms of career earning potential. Graduates of reputable MBA programs have the necessary qualifications to move directly into well-paid management positions with strong advancement prospects. Many MBA degree holders go on to secure prestigious upper-management roles with major companies, and a long list of high-powered executives and wealthy entrepreneurs are alumni of Michigan-based business schools.

Average Salary by Degree
Search Programs by Concentration

Careers for MBAs in Michigan

Given its status as a base for many major companies, a large number of Michigan-based jobs for MBA degree holders are oriented toward the management of traditional business activities, such as operations, finance, and marketing. The state’s recent embrace of technology-oriented jobs also means a strong rise in demand for candidates with tech-related MBA degrees. Below are five potential career paths for MBA graduates in Michigan.

Business Operations Manager

This career path puts the multifaceted skills of MBA graduates to excellent use in a cross-departmental organization and management capacity. Median salaries for new MBA graduates in these positions hover around $73,000.

Financial Manager

Financial managers hold major responsibilities in the administration of company finances. Key duties include profit and revenue projections, compliance assurance, and the preparation of specialized financial reports. New MBA graduates holding financial manager positions can earn about $121,750,000 per year.

Marketing Manager

These professionals devise strategies for moving into new markets, boosting market share, and improving performance in existing markets. A recent MBA graduate with no previous experience can expect a median salary of about $121,560 for this position.

Computer and Information Systems Manager

This fast-growing career path has a projected 15% growth rate between 2014 and 2024, and involves selecting, managing, and maintaining the security of the computer software and hardware used by a company. In Michigan, new MBA graduates with computer and information systems specializations currently command median salaries around $135,800.

Information Technology Director

This in-demand career focuses on acquiring and managing digital resources for companies, administering IT infrastructure, and selecting new and emerging technologies for adoption by the business. This high-paying MBA career path carries a median salary of $115,463.

This list of Michigan online MBA programs includes only accredited degree options. Costs and the number of available specializations vary from school to school, so individuals interested in pursuing a particular MBA concentration should perform additional research to compare and evaluate available opportunities.

Rank School Location Cost Toggle Logo Tuition % Receiving Financial Aid Student Population School Type Description

Andrews University

Location Berrien Springs, MI Tuition Tuition $17,259 % Receiving Financial Aid 49% Student Population 3,366 School Type Private

Located in Berrien Springs, Andrews University tailors an interactive online MBA program to busy working professionals. The school also reduces tuition for online students by half, and this Michigan online MBA boasts accreditation from the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education. Full-time students can finish the 33-credit program in one year if they do not need to complete any prerequisites. Students who need to complete the prerequisites typically add on 13 credit hours of coursework. Usually, applicants with their bachelor's in business administration or a similar degree meet all prerequisite requirements.

Students can apply five different times per year, and prospective students may begin their classes in the fall, spring, or summer. Applicants must submit two letters of recommendation from an adviser or employer, a resume, a statement of purpose, and GMAT scores.


View School Profile

Baker College

Location Flint, MI Tuition Tuition $26,410 % Receiving Financial Aid 71% Student Population 23,790 School Type Private

Flint is home to Baker College, which offers a Michigan online MBA degree. Baker's online MBA curriculum includes nine credit hours of elective courses and 27 credit hours of business core classes. Students can choose their own elective coursework, and mandatory business courses lay the foundation for a business administration career. Students take courses in human resource management, the financial environment, and management information systems to expand their business knowledge and strategy skills.

Accredited by the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education, Baker College's MBA requires students to complete a capstone course in which they act out common business scenarios. For example, one capstone exercise requires students to act as business consultants, assisting a company with developing strategic plans. Students also work together on a series of projects, including an assignment on effective leadership.


Concentrations
View School Profile

Central Michigan University

Location Mount Pleasant, MI Tuition Tuition $21,600 % Receiving Financial Aid 78% Student Population 26,825 School Type Public

Central Michigan University's online MBA program offers three admission dates for applicants. Students apply in the summer, fall, or spring semesters. Central Michigan delivers its Michigan online MBA entirely online, with courses taught in eight-week, 12-week, and 16-week terms. Applicants must create an admission portfolio featuring their GMAT scores, a bachelor's degree from an accredited university, a cumulative GPA of 2.7 or higher, a resume, and a personal statement. The school waives GMAT requirements for applicants who possess a master's degree, doctoral degree, or an exceptionally high undergraduate GPA. Degree candidates take 27 credit hours of core requirements.

In this curriculum, students learn about data analysis for managers, the global economic environment, and marketing-based management. They also take nine hours of value-driven organization electives in classes such as process improvement and the voice of the customer.


Concentrations
View School Profile

Cleary University

Location Howell, MI Tuition Tuition $30,360 % Receiving Financial Aid 76% Student Population 545 School Type Private

Cleary University administers three different MBA programs: analytics, technology, and innovation; global leadership; and healthcare leadership. Students in each of these Michigan online MBA programs progress through classes in cohort groups and take part in a hands-on curriculum. The analytics, technology, and innovation MBA program molds students into leaders for tech and big data companies. Even without a technology background, these students learn the skills they need to manage a tech-focused organization. Comprising 11 courses, students can finish this concentration in 22 months.

General program delivery follows a year-round structure in which students may take either one, seven-week course or two, 15-week courses at any given time. Similarly, the global and healthcare leadership concentrations require 33 hours of coursework. In each MBA concentration, learners take discipline-specific courses such as health quality management and the management of information technology. Cleary integrates its concentration courses into the general curriculum, eliminating the need for an elective requirement.


Concentrations
View School Profile

Concordia University - Ann Arbor

Location Ann Arbor, MI Tuition Tuition $27,261 % Receiving Financial Aid 74% Student Population 899 School Type Private

Students interested in the Concordia University MBA program do not need to submit GMAT or GRE scores. Instead, this Michigan online MBA requires an application fee, an essay, an official undergraduate transcript, two letters of recommendation, and a resume. Admitted students take 13 courses to complete the 39-credit hour curriculum. They take one course per eight-week term, and most learners graduate in 26 months. The curriculum features five concentrations options: accounting, communications and public relations, finance, healthcare administration, and human resource management.

Concordia also coordinates study-abroad experiences for its degree candidates. These students travel to Costa Rica, Austria, or China to participate in a week-long immersive learning experience; students can also study at one of the school's partner institutions abroad. Concordia offers learners a study-abroad grant. Learners can also enroll in a dual-degree program at one of these partner universities.


Concentrations
View School Profile

Davenport University

Location Grand Rapids, MI Tuition Tuition $22,950 % Receiving Financial Aid 71% Student Population 8,142 School Type Private

Davenport University prides itself on offering one of the premier Michigan online MBA programs in the state. The program boasts small class sizes, with approximately 15 students per class. Classes last for seven weeks in the MBA program's 30-credit curriculum. Courses begin at six start dates throughout the year, making it easy for busy students to enroll at any time. Students graduate within five semesters. The 12-month MBA accelerated program also requires 30 credits, but students take two courses per seven-week term.

In this program, students work in cohort groups. The 39-credit MBA format requires students to select a concentration. Students may choose from 11 specialization options in fields like forensic accounting or marketing. To fulfill the concentration requirement, students take nine additional credits of coursework. For program admission, students submit a statement of purpose, professional letters of recommendation, and a resume.


Concentrations
View School Profile

Ferris State University

Location Big Rapids, MI Tuition Tuition $27,072 % Receiving Financial Aid 66% Student Population 14,715 School Type Public

Offering a Michigan online MBA program, Ferris State University tries to set itself apart from other state schools. The university allows graduate students to create their own curriculum by working with advisers to select the courses that match their career interests and conduct independent research. Tenured staff instruct Ferris State's online MBA courses, and students take all of their classes remotely. Online students pay a special fee for access to their digital classes.

The FSU MBA program requires 30 hours of core work and nine hours of elective work in an MBA concentration. Students take 11 foundational courses, plus three elective courses. The program features unique specializations, like design and innovation management and lean systems and leadership. Admission requirements include three letters of recommendation, a resume, a statement of purpose, official transcripts, and GMAT or GRE test scores.


Concentrations
View School Profile

Cornerstone University

Location Grand Rapids, MI Tuition Tuition $21,850 % Receiving Financial Aid 74% Student Population 2,572 School Type Private

Full-time students can obtain their MBA degree from Cornerstone University in 20-22 months. The school delivers its Michigan online MBA program in two formats: online and blended. Moreover, Cornerstone offers a third, advanced-standing track for qualified students. The advanced standing program enables enrollees to graduate with their MBA degrees in 12 months. To enroll, applicants must hold a bachelor's degree from CU's undergraduate business division with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher. Applicants who meet these qualifications are exempt from taking certain required courses in the core MBA curriculum.

The core curriculum consists of 26 foundational credits and 12 credits of concentration courses. The school waives up to five courses for qualified applicants. Both advanced-standing students and traditional MBA students can select a concentration in finance, global business, project management, or healthcare. Learners in the global business concentration take a 5-10 day international trip during their last semester.


Concentrations
View School Profile

Lawrence Technological University

Location Southfield, MI Tuition Tuition $34,560 % Receiving Financial Aid 32% Student Population 3,516 School Type Private

Accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, LTU offers five concentrations in its Michigan online MBA. These specializations require nine credit hours of coursework across three classes. For example, students with a finance specialization take courses in investment management, financial markets and institutions, and international finance. To satisfy the core requirements, students take 27 credits, including a global strategic management capstone. In the capstone course, students use knowledge from their other classes to create and implement strategic plans for an organization.

Students complete the 36-credit program fully online in two years. Lawrence accepts applications on a rolling basis through the year, allowing students to apply for the MBA program in the spring, fall, or summer. To apply, students must submit a resume, an application, and official transcripts showing completion of a bachelor's degree. The admissions office waives GMAT scores for applicants with a master's or bachelor's degree with a cumulative GPA of 3.0.


Concentrations
View School Profile

University of Michigan - Dearborn

Location Dearborn, MI Tuition Tuition $13,572 % Receiving Financial Aid 65% Student Population 9,066 School Type Public

The University of Michigan's Dearborn campus offers an online MBA program requiring 36-48 credit hours. These credits cover courses in applied integrated management (AIM), a sector of the MBA curriculum. In the AIM sector, students select one course in international business and two courses in the general AIM curriculum. They also take a capstone course in strategic planning and decision making.

Learners who want to specialize their degree can do so by adding a concentration to the general Michigan online MBA program. Students pick from seven concentrations, such as supply chain management, and take three courses to satisfy the concentration requirement. Students may also decide to use a business internship to fulfill their elective requirement. Students who complete similar coursework in another accredited MBA program may receive a course waiver from the university. Students can transfer up to six prior credits toward their MBA degree if the university approves them.


Concentrations
View School Profile

Northwood University - Michigan

Location Midland, MI Tuition Tuition $37,080 % Receiving Financial Aid 71% Student Population 3,337 School Type Private

Supervised by the Devos Graduate School, Northwood University gives students the opportunity to earn a Michigan online MBA degree. Full-time students can graduate from the 36-credit MBA program in two years. Learners take 12 courses total, enrolling in 5-7 courses each year to fulfill program requirements. Northwood also awards course credit for prior work experience. The program's online curriculum gives learners control over their schedule. Students do not need to log into the system at specific times unless otherwise instructed by their professor. They complete courses at their own pace and coordinate Skype meetings with instructors, advisers, or classmates when they need more interaction.

The school maintains a help desk to assist students with their online courses and fix any technological issues they might encounter. Northwood estimates that its students spend 15-20 hours per week completing online work. Students participate in online discussions, group projects, and other deliverables carefully curated by Devos faculty members.


View School Profile

Spring Arbor University

Location Spring Arbor, MI Tuition Tuition $24,840 % Receiving Financial Aid 75% Student Population 3,401 School Type Private

Founded in 1873, Spring Arbor University aims to deliver quality education to all its students. The university dedicated an entire school to online learning, drawing upon its Christian values to teach its students. Spring Arbor offers various MBA program pathways, including an accelerated option. Through the accelerated program, students can finish the program in one year; part-time students graduate in 18 months. Students who choose a degree concentration can graduate in 12-18 months.

To help students progress through the program, SAU assigns success advisers who help learners with everything from developing work-life balance to operating technology. To gain admission into this Michigan online MBA, applicants do not need to submit GMAT or GRE scores. Program concentrations include management, executive leadership, human resource development, healthcare administration, and organizational consulting. The entire program is available online, and students do not need to visit campus unless they want to attend the international business summit in New York.


Concentrations
View School Profile

Walsh College

Location Troy, MI Tuition Tuition $32,340 % Receiving Financial Aid 58% Student Population 2,549 School Type Private

The Michigan online MBA program at Walsh College follows a four-semester, 11-week format. Students choose between an online and a hybrid delivery format, both of which operate on a semester system. To obtain their MBAs, students enroll in 14 core curriculum courses, including operations management and marketing fundamentals. Students may also opt to graduate with a dual degree. Walsh's online MBA program allows students to pair their MBA with a master's degree in another field, such as finance or information technology leadership. To apply to the Walsh MBA program, students need an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution.

For students trying to further their careers, the school's career services center hosts career fairs, meet and greet events, and company presentations. Walsh also works closely with MBA degree candidates to find internships and job placements. The university's online MBA holds accreditation from the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs.


View School Profile

Wayne State University

Location Detroit, MI Tuition Tuition $10,440 % Receiving Financial Aid 60% Student Population 27,140 School Type Public

Wayne State University calls Detroit home, but it draws applicants from across the country. Wayne State students can choose to enroll either part-time or full-time and can dictate their own course schedules. Learners who want to choose a concentration for their degree can select from 15 options, including accounting systems and taxation. This Michigan online MBA program allows students to select two concentrations. Students pursuing a concentration may complete three courses in addition to their elective course requirement. Elective and specialization courses account for 18 program credits. Wayne State offers accelerated courses in four- and 11-week formats. These classes convene during the fall and winter terms.

Students use the Blackboard learning management system to access course materials and lectures. Correspondingly, students use the system to video conference each other and instructors. To help students advance in their careers, Wayne State offers the graduate programs and career planning and placement offices. Both centers advise online MBA students by phone.


View School Profile

Kettering University

Location Flint, MI Tuition Tuition $42,720 % Receiving Financial Aid 64% Student Population 2,252 School Type Private

When students in Kettering University's Michigan online MBA program choose a degree concentration, they receive a certificate from the university. Graduates of Kettering often go on to become CFOs and business owners. The school boasts an impressive alumni network, with graduates working for and leading top corporations. Students enrolled in the program may receive their certification in healthcare management, global leadership, or another discipline.

Kettering created its MBA program to be completed in 18 months, but the university allows students to set their own pace and develop their own course schedule. MBA degree candidates complete 40 total credits across 10 courses. Seven of those courses fulfill core program requirements, and students complete three courses for certification. The program does not require on-campus meetings, and students complete their coursework entirely online. Kettering uses interactive components and new technology to deliver courses. The university's MBA program holds full accreditation from the Accredited Council for Business Schools and Programs.


Concentrations
View School Profile

University of Michigan - Flint

Location Flint, MI Tuition Tuition $26,922 % Receiving Financial Aid 85% Student Population 8,470 School Type Public

Distance education learners at the University of Michigan-Flint enroll in NET+ courses or online classes. NET+ courses follow a hybrid format, combining on-campus classes with virtual courses. Students complete 60% of their work online and meet in person twice each year for two-day, on-campus residencies which occur on Friday and Saturday. The school also administers dual-degree programs. While enrolled in the MBA program, students may also obtain their master's degree in another discipline, such as leadership and organizational dynamics, computer science and information systems, accounting, or lean manufacturing. Medical students at the Flint campus may receive their doctor of nursing practice or doctor of physical therapy degree along with a Michigan online MBA.

Admission requirements include GMAT and GRE scores, but applicants may receive waivers depending on their previous coursework, degree, or GPA. Learners with CFA, CPA, and CFP certifications can also request GMAT/GRE waivers.


Concentrations
View School Profile

Saginaw Valley State University

Location University Center, MI Tuition Tuition $24,252 % Receiving Financial Aid 58% Student Population 9,633 School Type Public

SVSU's Michigan online MBA program holds accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International -- a feat only 5% of business schools can boast. The 31-credit program requires three elective courses. Applicants without sufficient undergraduate business coursework, or whose grades do not meet certain requirements, may need to take prerequisite courses before starting their MBA curriculum. These students must take their courses at SVSU. The university awards a certificate in international business to students who complete 12 credits in one of four functional areas. MBA students enroll in 3-4 international business courses, which may include international accounting or international trade policy. Students who choose the entrepreneurship concentration may take specialty courses to gain additional business knowledge.

SVSU teaches its business and management core curriculum in a hybrid format, with most core courses worth two credit hours. Instructors deliver six credit hours of foundational courses completely online.


Concentrations
View School Profile

There are many important considerations to make before settling on an online MBA program in Michigan. These include factors discussed above like cost, accreditation, and available specializations. The following list includes some key steps to follow during the program research process for MBA options in any state.

  • Compare student outcomes data

    Student outcomes include graduation rate, year-to-year retention rate, the average debt for a graduate from that school, and overall student satisfaction with their degree program. Student outcomes do not guarantee you will be satisfied with a particular program, but can be useful for pinpointing a school’s strengths and weaknesses.

  • Estimate the expected costs of your programs

    Virtually every accredited college or university posts tuition rates online. Additionally, you should research other college-related costs like living accommodations and meal plans (if you plan to live on-campus), administrative fees, and technology fees (for online students). You should also look into scholarships, grants, and other forms of institutional financial aid that can offset some of the costs.

  • Check that classes will fit in with your schedule

    Scheduling is critical for students with other important commitments, such as childcare or full-time employment. Many online programs are asynchronous, or self-paced; students in these tracks are free to complete course requirements on their own schedule. Synchronous programs, on the other hand, require weekly online meetings with teachers and fellow students.

  • Look for partnerships with local businesses

    A large number of online MBA programs include internship and/or capstone practicum requirements ― and in many cases, students are able to gain on-the-job training and real-world office experience. You should look into the school’s business partnerships, particularly in regard to the industry you plan to enter after earning your MBA.

  • Make sure the program is accredited

    Accreditation status should always be available and easily accessible on a school’s website. In addition to regional or national accreditation, some MBA pathways receive programmatic accreditation. Recognized programmatic accreditors for MBA programs include the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP) and the International Accreditation Counsel for Business Education (IACBE).

  • Talk to current students and/or recent alumni

    You should contact the alumni office at each school you are considering and ask to be connected with former students. These individuals can be good sources of information about education costs, life on- and off-campus, local business tips, and other important details for aspiring MBA students.