Is an MBA Necessary? On the Need for More Black Women to Go the Extra Mile

Going back to school on a Graduate level can be a commitment and a scary proposition. As Black women, we have to consider the juggling of the various roles that we share daily including: family, professional life, along with other factors that can make it challenging… should you do it?
Here is information to consider if you are thinking about the reasons to go back:

– You will increase versatility in your career and personal development

– A successful number of Black women have completed and have experienced a tremendous Return on Investment (ROI)

– You are taken more seriously in your professional environment with the completion of this degree

There are numerous examples of successful Black Women who have achieved this degree and are functioning well in their own organization; in addition to larger corporations. Individuals such as: Ursula Burns, (Chairman, CEO, Xerox Corporation) Verchele Wiggins, (VP, Global Brand Portfolio, Holiday Inn Brand Family)Nicole Lindsay, Diversity MBA Prep, and Tammy ” T-Time” Brawner, Harlem Globetrotter, to name a few. These women have all achieved an MBA degree and are in diverse careers using their learned skills.

There is a need

According to the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) women represent 31% of the population among the top business schools in this country. Even though this is great, the number of Black women pursuing their MBA degree is significantly less.

As we consider pursing a Graduate degree, particularly an MBA, it is important that you connect with individuals who have similar interest and goals. How can this be achieved? Networking is not only essential, but a vital part of the professional relationships that you should establish. In the process, forming an alliance with an Educational mentor may help you as you institute guidelines and assist to escape some of the unforeseen pitfalls that can exist as you progress on this journey.

Lifestyle writer Sakita Holley interviewed several Black women who have earned their MBA. In her discussions, the consensus was that an MBA was recommended for those Black women who desire to move forward in their careers. Each interviewee mentioned that their degree gave then an extra edge to compete in a business environment. In addition, achieving an MBA is a long term investment, but will impact you for your life time. Not only are you more competitive in today’s market, you will have to consider how you will leverage this degree to assist you in making the right professional choices.

In review of the educational component, the coursework is already established. It is up to you to come prepared with your “A” game in and out of the school environment. It is a fact: obtaining a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) will enlighten and enrich you in your professional development, and enhance your career. You will gain skills in several areas of business; interpersonal and public speaking, time and project management along with leadership traits which are marketable skills not only for now, but are extremely useful in the future. If you are giving this idea some consideration in my professional opinion; go for it! Align yourself with the professional knowledge that is available to you through the skilled resources that are present; your Educators, Business professionals and an Educational Mentor; you can’t go wrong with this network!

Dr. Claudia Barnett is Training and Performance Improvement Technologist and an Educational Mentor. Author of “The Dissertation Process: A Step by Step Mentored Guide”, she is a sought after speaker and regular a Conference speaker for IMA and ISPI. For those who are interested in pursuing advanced degrees you can find more information about Dr. Claudia at http// You can follow her on Facebook at The Dissertation Process or on Twitter at PhDMentoring.