Minnesota is an economic beacon in the Midwest. The state is known for its strong and diverse economy, including 17 Fortune 500 companies. The state’s estimated population in 2017 was just over 5.3 million, with the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area alone home to roughly 3.5 million. Rochester to the south and Duluth in the northeast are other significant metropolitan areas in the state.

By completing an online MBA, Minnesota students can take advantage of all the state’s robust economy has to offer. There are seven MBA programs in Minnesota, and most allow students to take all or many of their classes online. These factors make the Gopher State an ideal place to earn an advanced degree in business.

When researching online MBA programs in Minnesota, you may notice considerable differences in tuition rates. This depends on a variety of factors, including if you can pay in-state tuition. The average cost of attendance at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, for example, is $26,719 per year for a state resident, but more than $36,000 for an out-of-state resident. This can make a big difference in the ultimate cost of your graduate degree. Some online MBA programs, such as the one at Saint Mary’s University, charge the same tuition rate no matter where a student resides. The type of institution you attend will also affect the cost of your Minnesota online MBA program. Large public colleges and universities tend to charge lower rates than their smaller, private counterparts.

There are seven MBA programs in Minnesota, and most allow students to take all or many of their classes online.

Another factor to consider is how much time (if any) you’ll need to spend on campus. If you can complete your program entirely online, you may save significant costs on transportation, housing, and childcare. While most Minnesota online MBA programs require you to submit GMAT scores with your application, they may provide waivers if you have significant management experience or have received formal training beyond a bachelor’s degree.

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

MBA Concentrations for Minnesota Students

Minnesota is known for its robust and diverse economy across many different industries. According to the state’s TDepartment of Employment and Economic Development, the healthcare, biosciences, agriculture, manufacturing, finance, and renewable energy sectors are particularly strong. Students who opt to focus their studies in certain areas when completing their Minnesota online MBA program can capitalize on the industries with the greatest potential for growth.

 

  • Healthcare Administration: This concentration focuses on the business and operational side of healthcare. It prepares students to serve in high-level administrative roles within health systems, insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies, and long-term care facilities.
  • Sustainability : By concentrating in sustainability, Minnesota online MBA students can help forward-looking companies become more energy efficient and environmentally responsible in their operations. Students learn about climate change, environmental regulations, and natural capital.

Accreditation in Minnesota

One key factor in your search for online MBA programs in Minnesota is each school’s accreditation status. Accreditation signifies whether a school offers quality educational programming to its students. The regional accreditation body for Minnesota institutions is the North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement. Some online schools and programs may be nationally accredited through the Distance Education Accrediting Commission. Regional accreditation is more prestigious than national accreditation.

Thanks to its business-friendly environment and well-educated workforce, Minnesota has one of the most productive economies in the nation. The state is home to the world-renowned Mayo Clinic, a leading force in Minnesota’s incredibly strong healthcare and education services sector. The state also a leader in the biosciences, agriculture, manufacturing, and renewable energy industries. As of September 2017, the state’s unemployment rate was at 3.7%, a few points below the national rate of 4.4%. While the Twin Cities metropolitan area by far has the most number of jobs, there are also numerous employment opportunities in the smaller metro areas of Duluth and Rochester.

If you graduate from one of the widely respected online MBA programs in Minnesota, you will find a variety of options working for organizations that range in size from small startups to large Fortune 500 companies. An online MBA in Minnesota also gives you the opportunity to earn a higher salary and move into management positions within various businesses and organizations. Below are a few of the largest employers in the state of Minnesota.

Top Employers in Minnesota

Company Industry Headquarters City Number of Employees
Mayo Clinic Healthcare Rochester 39,518
State of Minnesota Government St. Paul 37,180

Graduates from an online MBA program in Minnesota may qualify for a range of positions that would be much less accessible with an associate or bachelor’s degree alone. Getting an MBA also puts you in a strong position to move up within an organization, enabling you to compete for management-level positions and the higher salaries that come with them. Business professionals with an MBA often make tens of thousands of dollars more per year than those without a master’s degree. They also tend to have greater responsibilities and potential for exceptional career growth.

Average Salary by Degree
Search Programs by Concentration

Careers for MBAs in Minnesota

Top Executives

Executives oversee entire departments or businesses, often serving as the leader of teams of hundreds or thousands of people. They appoint department heads, negotiate contracts, make key financial decisions, and develop strategies and goals for an organization.

Health Services Manager

Also known as healthcare administrators or executives, these professionals oversee the delivery of medical services in many different settings. Health service managers may work at hospitals, insurance companies, large clinics, or the headquarters of healthcare systems.

Finance Director

These professionals oversee the financial health of a business or organization, analyzing data from forecasts, budgets, business reports, and financial statements. They may also look for ways to reduce costs and attain greater profit margins.

Administrative Services Manager

These senior-level managers oversee departments and facilities. They establish strategies and set goals for various teams within an organization. These managers tend to focus on processes, looking for ways to improve operational efficiencies and ensure the regulatory compliance of all facilities.

Marketing and Advertising Manager

Responsible for overseeing marketing, public relations, and advertising campaigns, these managers help ensure the growth of businesses and organizations. They also are involved in budgeting, negotiating contracts, hiring staff, and developing pricing strategies.

Below you will find a list of the best online MBA programs in Minnesota. These programs are fully accredited and available through reputable colleges and universities statewide. They all offer the flexibility and accelerated pace that come with distance learning. Browse this list to determine your options as you look to advance your education in the field of business.

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

Bemidji State University

Location Bemidji, MN Tuition Tuition $18,000 % Receiving Financial Aid 61% Student Population 5,081 School Type Public

The online MBA in Minnesota at Bemidji State University focuses on strategic leadership and professional development through advanced coursework and personalized enrichment experiences. Students enjoy a flexible course schedule that allows them to earn their MBA in as little as one year or spread their coursework out over a longer period.

While many colleges feature higher tuition rates for out-of-state students, Bemidji charges the same tuition rate for all students. Financial aid opportunities are available to those who qualify. The 30-credit curriculum includes 10 courses covering topics such as global business, statistical analysis, and corporate social responsibility. Bemidji offers an accelerated MBA program, too. Undergraduate students who qualify for the accelerated option take four MBA courses during their senior year as general coursework toward their bachelor's degree. Once they graduate from their bachelor's program, students can complete their final six MBA courses in the accelerated online program, finishing their degree in as little as one year.


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Bethel University

Location Saint Paul, MN Tuition Tuition $29,190 % Receiving Financial Aid 66% Student Population 3,952 School Type Private

One of the best online MBA programs in Minnesota, Bethel University's program features five concentration options that allow students to cater their degree to their career goals and interests. Students hoping to learn more about global finance trends and quantitative statistics find that the finance concentration works for them; other students intrigued by creating advanced business strategies enjoy the strategy and execution concentration. Bethel also offers MBA concentrations in management, global management, and healthcare administration.

All concentrations require students to complete 42 credits of coursework. Students can engage with local business leaders through both the alumni group and special projects. Six one-on-one coaching sessions with an experienced career coach grant students the ability to create a specialized career plan.


Concentrations
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Capella University

Location Minneapolis, MN Tuition Tuition $20,352 % Receiving Financial Aid 50% Student Population 35,569 School Type Private

Featuring a FlexPath option, the online MBA in Minnesota at Capella University allows students to earn their MBA in as little as one year for under $11,000. Capella offers two program options for online MBA students: the FlexPath or the GuidedPath. The FlexPath is self-paced, meaning students finish one course and move on to the next without waiting for the next term to start.

The GuidedPath allows students to complete their coursework at any time with 24/7 classroom access. Instructors pre-set the curriculum, requiring assignments at the end of the week and message board discussions in the middle of the week. The entire program features a guided curriculum with instructors assigning readings relevant to course material and providing students with help along the way.


Concentrations
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Concordia University - Saint Paul

Location Saint Paul, MN Tuition Tuition $26,250 % Receiving Financial Aid 64% Student Population 4,380 School Type Private

Offered fully online, Concordia University's MBA program is one of the best online MBAs in Minnesota. The 42-credit curriculum reviews a variety of topics, including managerial research methods and design, integrated marketing communication, and operations and technology management. Near the end of the program, students can choose to take a global management course or complete a study abroad.

Concordia features an MBA mentor and managerial application portfolio program that assigns a faculty mentor to each student to help guide them through their graduate degree. The managerial application portfolio is a required one-credit course students must take in six consecutive terms. Mentors act as personal business coaches to help students perfect their interpersonal skills, strengthen their resumes, and create networking strategies. Applicants must hold a 3.0 minimum GPA from an accredited undergraduate program and submit a personal statement and professional resume.


Concentrations
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Crown College

Location Saint Bonifacius, MN Tuition Tuition $22,260 % Receiving Financial Aid 70% Student Population 1,153 School Type Private

Crown College's online MBA in Minnesota teaches students how to lead others from a Protestant-based perspective. MBA students apply the material they learn in their courses to real work situations in the private, nonprofit, and government sectors. The curriculum comprises 42 total credits, with 27 credits in core coursework and 15 concentration credits. Students choose either the general MBA path or the nonprofit management concentration. Concentration courses in the general area include topics such as business law and ethics, operations management, and international finance; those in the nonprofit management sector cover topics like fundraising and philanthropy.

A Protestant worldview remains present in every course and activity. Graduates research diverse perspectives to solve problems with high integrity and ethical awareness. Online MBA students come from various backgrounds, allowing them to collaborate with colleagues from healthcare, aviation, finance, retail management, marketing, and service industries.


Concentrations
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Metropolitan State University

Location Saint Paul, MN Tuition Tuition $15,600 % Receiving Financial Aid 52% Student Population 8,424 School Type Public

Located in Saint Paul, Metropolitan State University offers an online MBA in Minnesota. The curriculum serves diverse students with a globally-oriented, practical outlook. Graduates of the program leave prepared to analyze the impact of external and internal influences on organizations, communicate effectively, understand ethical considerations of policies and decisions, and work effectively with individuals from diverse backgrounds.

Faculty members boast many years of business and managerial experience in both nonprofit organizations and global companies, enabling students to learn how to apply their coursework directly to real-world situations. The college of management at Metropolitan State University uses three different metrics to track how well they serve students: graduation rates, retention rates, and enrollment trends. The college also tracks how well students absorb the skills they practice during their coursework by regularly administering assessments to evaluate how equipped students are to succeed as business practitioners and managers.


Concentrations
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Minnesota State University - Moorhead

Location Moorhead, MN Tuition Tuition $14,393 % Receiving Financial Aid 64% Student Population 5,923 School Type Public

Minnesota State University in Moorhead's online MBA program allows students to gain the knowledge and skills they need to become more effective leaders. The program molds students into strategic thinkers who embody analytical business approaches. The curriculum covers a variety of relevant topics, including marketing, management, investments, project management, and finance. Graduates not only increase their understanding of business fundamentals, but they also develop the tools they need to apply critical thinking when making managerial decisions.

Many online MBA in Minnesota programs require students to hold a specific undergraduate degree or prerequisites, but Minnesota State's online MBA program does not require specific undergraduate experience; students need only possess an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution. Additionally, applicants must possess a minimum 3.0 GPA and submit a current resume, two letters of recommendation, a letter of intent, and GMAT scores.


Concentrations
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Saint Cloud State University

Location Saint Cloud, MN Tuition Tuition $21,000 % Receiving Financial Aid 48% Student Population 16,096 School Type Public

Targeting working professionals with between three and five years of professional work experience, Saint Cloud University offers one of the best online MBA programs in Minnesota. The fully online program features an asynchronous program, allowing students to finish their work anytime, anywhere. The curriculum follows a cohort in which small class sizes enable students to earn their degrees simultaneously with one another. Online MBA students at Saint Cloud earn their degree in 28 months. Though students can decide when and where they want to conduct their classwork, they must participate in small group discussions through discussion boards and online chats.

Instructors of online programs also teach on-campus classes, so online students receive the same high quality education as their on-campus counterparts. The cohort format allows students to go through their program with the same group of 20-25 students, building connections along the way. Applicants need a 3.25 minimum GPA and at least five years of recent, full-time, post-undergraduate work experience.


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Saint Mary's University of Minnesota

Location Winona, MN Tuition Tuition $19,500 % Receiving Financial Aid 61% Student Population 5,931 School Type Private

Located in Winona, Saint Mary's University of Minnesota's MBA online program helps students advance their careers by offering accelerated programs that learners complete in as little as 18 months. Three program tracks -- social media management and marketing, data analytics, and sustainability and environmental management -- allow students to tailor their degrees to their career goals and specific skill sets. The 30-credit curriculum includes 26 lecture series options, allowing students to choose lectures that fit their individual interests.

Seniors must complete a capstone project in which they apply the knowledge they learn to either a domestic or international business situation. The program prepares students to pursue social media strategy certification with curriculums created by the National Institute for Social Media. In addition to the three program tracks, students can opt to follow a general MBA path for an expanded study of topics like ethical leadership and organizational behavior.


Concentrations
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The College of Saint Scholastica

Location Duluth, MN Tuition Tuition $19,080 % Receiving Financial Aid 68% Student Population 4,329 School Type Private

The College of Saint Scholastica's Minnesota MBA online program features a unique curriculum designed both by and for business professionals focused on developing change-management and leadership skills. The college has two locations: Duluth and Saint Paul. The 36-credit curriculum allows students to choose an accelerated format and finish in as few as 12 months -- taking eight-week terms. The program focuses on the principles of organization development, experiential learning, and ethical decision-making.

Online MBA students learn how to design, analyze, and deliver effective change-based strategies and interventions in an ever-changing global environment. They can identify competing values, assumptions, and behaviors relevant to the effective implementation of different proposed change initiatives, and they display critical thinking and high-level reasoning through both written and oral skills. Three capstone options include a global capstone that allows students to travel abroad with faculty for an experiential learning opportunity, a group practicum where students apply theory to practice in a small group project with their peers, or a traditional thesis.


Concentrations
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University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

Location Minneapolis, MN Tuition Tuition $78,375 % Receiving Financial Aid 43% Student Population 50,678 School Type Public

Dedicated to advancing students' leadership and management skills, the University of Minnesota's MBA online program mixes business fundamentals with industry-specific electives, enabling students to tailor their degrees to their skill sets and career goals. Online MBA students enjoy access to a variety of resources, including career coaches, an alumni network that covers 95 countries, and academic advisers.

Students can complete the 52-credit program in about two years. In addition to online courses, the program offers the potential to participate in some on-campus courses and/or global experiences. The business school provides a career center that prepares students for successful job searches through resume reviews, career fairs, mock interviews, networking events, and more. Coursework covers various business-oriented topics, including business ethics, managerial economics, and marketing management.


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University of Northwestern - St Paul

Location Saint Paul, MN Tuition Tuition $20,958 % Receiving Financial Aid 46% Student Population 3,447 School Type Private

Offering both a fully online and a hybrid MBA program, the University of Northwestern's Minnesota MBA online incorporates strategic networking into every course. Students can finish the program in as little as 22-26 months. The Christian university instills faith and understanding in students as they learn from Christian professors who are experts in small business entrepreneurship, marketing, and other pertinent areas of business. The curriculum develops students' critical thinking and communication skills by covering topics such as the legal aspects of business, marketing for managers, managerial leadership, and human resource and organizational development.

The 42-credit curriculum offers core coursework that allows students to learn about business and leadership principles for global communities and prepares them to serve God by advancing their careers and accomplishing greater levels of responsibility within an organization. Class sizes feature a 14:1 ratio, giving students the chance to enjoy more one-on-one experiences with their instructors.


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University of St. Thomas

Location Saint Paul, MN Tuition Tuition $72,000 % Receiving Financial Aid 57% Student Population 10,148 School Type Private

The Minnesota MBA online program at the University of St. Thomas offers a unique, executive-style cohort learning environment where students' goals drive their learning experience. The cohort structure emphasizes teamwork and collaboration; 25-30 students in each group move through the 21-month program together. This model allows students to form strong intellectual and personal connections with their peers. The online MBA program focuses on healthcare, featuring a diverse professional network that represents the entire healthcare industry.

Students complete a global residency that focuses on universal innovation in healthcare. The program serves as one of only 14 MBA programs dually accredited by both the Association for the Advancement of Collegiate Schools of Business International and the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education. Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree and submit an updated resume, transcripts, essay responses, and two letters of recommendation. Applicants should also boast healthcare industry experience and five years of work experience.


Concentrations
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Walden University

Location Minneapolis, MN Tuition Tuition $34,200 % Receiving Financial Aid Student Population 52,799 School Type Private

Featuring three different program options, the online MBA in Minnesota at Walden University allows students to choose the format that works best for them. The course-based MBA offers an instructor-led approach where students learn on a predetermined schedule. Students complete the degree in as little as 20 months. This format requires students to complete 10 to 15 hours of coursework each week, with one course every eight weeks. Students can customize their degree to their interests and career goals by choosing one of 11 different concentration areas such as entrepreneurship and small business, project management, and social entrepreneurship and innovation.

The fast-track, course-based MBA caters to students who can devote more time to their studies, earning their degree in just 12 months. Students dedicate 30-35 hours per week with two courses every eight weeks; the program focuses on a general overview rather than offering concentrations. The competency-based program highlights a flexible schedule with no set deadlines, allowing students to work at their own pace. In this format, students can focus their degree on either healthcare management or project management.


Concentrations
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There are many important considerations to make before settling on an online MBA program in Minnesota. 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.