Entrepreneur MBA Degree Statistics

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Entrepreneur MBA Degree Statistics

Key Takeaways

  • According to a 2021 survey by Illuminate Ventures, the top three (3) motivations for entrepreneurs pursuing an MBA degree includes the need to bring ideas to the market, creating a long-lasting company, and running their own business.
  • Other motivations pointed out include making a positive impact on society, running an ethical social enterprise, and proving that profit and social good are not mutually exclusive.
  • The top five (5) US universities that offer MBAs for entrepreneurs according to the US News are Babson College - F.W. Olin Graduate School of Business, Stanford Graduate School of Business, MIT Sloan School of Management, Haas School of Business, University of California Berkeley, Harvard Business School.
  • The top five (5) global (excluding universities in the US) universities that offer MBAs for entrepreneurs according to Find MBA are HKUST Hong Kong University of Science and Technology Business School, EMLYON Business School, IE Business School, University of Cambridge - Judge Business School, and London Business School (LBS).


  • The research provides an overview of the motivations for entrepreneurs pursuing an MBA degree, including a spreadsheet with the list of top 25 United States and global schools that offer MBAs for entrepreneurs. A link to the spreadsheet is provided herein.

Entrepreneurs Pursuing an MBA Degree: Motivations

  • According to a 2021 survey by Illuminate Ventures, one of the motivations stood out far above all others: The opportunity “to bring ideas for products/solutions I am passionate about to market.”
  • The response was consistent across all levels of prior student work experience and educational background, as the top selected motivation for pursuing entrepreneurship.
  • The top three motivations to become an entrepreneur were selected in very similar ratios by both male and female students:
  • Additionally, as compared to responses to the same question collected in our 2018 research with active entrepreneurs, the overall ranking of motivations was nearly identical.
  • Although there was an even higher level of commitment to the #1 choice that was voiced by over 70% of women and 60% of men.
  • This level of consistency between the responses provided by students and by active entrepreneurs as well as across reported genders, educational background, and several other factors displays a strong level of like-mindedness of such individuals.
  • This infers that the drive to be entrepreneurial is not changed by extraneous factors. An entrepreneur is an entrepreneur at heart!
  • One unique difference between the male founders as compared to either female founders or MBA students was their higher ranking of being motivated by the potential for “significant financial gain”.
  • 15% of male founders selected this as their top motivation versus less than 7% of student respondents and a similarly low percentage of female entrepreneurs.
  • The survey also offered respondents the opportunity to describe their own motivation rather than choose from the pre-defined list that was included. While few chose to do this, nearly half of the “write-in” responses from students focused on making a positive impact on society.
  • Several shared plans to do more with their startup ideas than just build a successful business, including being “most interested in running an ethical social enterprise” and “proving that profit and social good are not mutually exclusive.”
  • These motivations are consistent with other research on the priorities of Gen Y and Millennials. Not only are more and more MBAs interested in careers in entrepreneurship, but many are looking beyond financial gain to measure their success.

Research Strategy

For this research on Entrepreneur MBA Degree Statistics, we leveraged the most reputable sources of information that were available in the public domain, including a 2021 survey by Illuminate Ventures,
Also, we found multiple sources containing a list of the top US and global schools that offer MBAs for entrepreneurs. The sources found are Princeton Review, US News, Business Insider, e-GMAT, College Rank, Find MBA, Top MBA, Noodle, and Inc. To define top, we selected schools that appeared in at least three of the lists found.

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