Ranking the best business school programs by the percentage of MBA graduates entering media and entertainment industries (2018)

In prior years, we excluded USC Marshall from our entertainment and media ranking as it fell outside of the business schools generally regarded as "top 15" by US News and Businessweek. However, given the overwhelming strength of Marshall's strength within the entertainment/media, we've updated our 2018 entertainment and media ranking to provide a more relevant assessment. 

Best MBA Programs for Media & Entertainment Industry Jobs (2018)

Hands down, USC Marshall is best MBA program for jobs in the media and entertainment industry.

It's not even close. 

With 13% of Marshall's graduating class entering entertainment/media, (as a percentage of all MBA graduates) the program sends more than double the number of students UCLA Anderson (6.5%) or NYU Stern (4.3%) does into the industry.

3 reasons why USC Marshall is the best MBA program for a career within media and entertainment.

Besides Marshall's proximity to dominant players within entertainment and media, as well as the ancillary consulting and finance related firms that support these companies, the USC MBA program offers 3 primary advantages for students.

1. Graduate Certificate in the Business of Entertainment

Marshall leverages the strength of other graduate school programs at University of Southern California to bolster its course offerings within the business of entertainment media. In association with the USC School of Cinematic Arts, Marshall offers a formal Graduate Certificate in the Business of Entertainment. The program provides graduate level courses in the business of film, television and new media. Notably, classes are taught by industry veterans, and are held off-site - outside of Marshall and even off-campus at studios or agency offices. This is an incredible way for MBA students to not only build their subject matter knowledge, but also industry relationships – which are absolutely paramount for successful career within entertainment.

2. Business of Entertainment Association (BEA)

The Business of Entertainment Association at USC Marshall is the most robust entertainment and media industry club that we have come across at any MBA program. The club boasts 21 group officers, 227 group members, and 201 industry events on its homepage.

BEA's effectiveness and value to those seeking entertainment/media careers takes root in the organization's approach to mentoring and peer coaching. BEA members have "access to a robust professional networking wealth of varied entertainment and media experience", which is backed up by a rather impressive list of experienced student mentors for both the full-time and part-time (MBA.PM) programs.

3. Career management services/resources specifically dedicated to media and entertainment industry recruiting

In its guide for recruiters, Marshall's MBA Career Services specifically references a point of contact for Media, Entertainment, Technology recruiting. It seems that Marshall has picked the right person (Peter Campbell) for the job as well.

Peter worked within the entertainment industry for over 20 years for some of the major studios including DreamWorks Animation SKG, Warner Bros. Studios, and NBCUniversal. His primary experience has been within human resources and recruiting, including extensive exposure to production and talent management.

Most recently, Peter was a Human Resources Business Partner for the NBCUniversal Operations & Technical Services group and prior to NBCU, Peter worked for 13 years at DreamWorks Animation SKG, holding multiple HR roles, including the management of the DWA Internship Program.
— https://www.marshall.usc.edu/career-services/graduate-career-services/meet-staff

In combination with the recruiting resources and network offered by the Business of Entertainment Association, Marshall has what we believe to be the deepest reach into and most well-established relationships within Los Angeles' entertainment/media industry - the epicenter of the world's entertainment and media industries.

UCLA Anderson is the 2nd best MBA program for jobs in the media and entertainment industry.

No surprises here, primarily because of Anderson's Los Angeles location. While the MBA program has its fair share of industry contacts within entertainment media, the school's focus and strength lies more within technology, entrepreneurship, and finance.

Breaking Down UCLA Anderson's Entertainment/Media Hires

Percentages add up to 6.5% - the percent of hires entering the entertainment/media industry at Anderson.

NYU Stern remains a respectable 3rd best, maintaining its spot since our last entertainment & media career ranking.

No surprises here either.

Unfortunately, NYU Stern does not break down their entertainment/media related hiring data and stats as granularly as UCLA Anderson does. This is why we are unable to provide you a more detailed analysis of their entertainment/media hires.  

Source: NYU Stern Office of Career Development Employment Report 2016

Entertainment & media programs on the rise

Stanford GSB makes the biggest jump since our last ranking, rising from 13th to 4th place. This represents a change from 1% to 3% from 2015 to 2017. Not too shabby. 

MIT Sloan now leap frogs into 3rd place from its prior 4th place ranking. This is a bit of addition by subtraction. Last time around MIT Sloan had 4.3% of their MBA graduates enter the entertainment & media field. This time it was only 3.6%.

Wharton moves into 4th place from 7th, growing their percentage from 2.4% to 3.2%. 

However, a word to the wise - let's keep it all in perspective - the actual magnitude of change represents only a change in 1, 2 or 3 students.

Entertainment & media programs not on the rise

HBS remains in 6th place, with the exact same percentage of graduates - 3% - entering entertainment and media this time around.

Haas drops out of the race this year with 0%, whereas 1.6% of graduates entered entertainment & media in our last ranking. Haas has never been the strongest with respect to sending graduates back into entertainment or media, but this did surprise us when we examined the numbers. Perhaps Stanford GSB's rise came at the expense of Haas. We can't say for sure right now.  

Michigan Ross - which was 3rd in our last ranking with 5.5% of grads entering entertainment & media - completely drops off the list.

Kellogg - which was 5th in our last entertainment & media ranking - drops from 4.3% to 0.6%. In our opinion, both of these drops (at Kellogg and Ross) are large enough to warrant further investigation should you chose to apply to these programs.

Final Thoughts

To find out more about your options and how we can help you with your business school application, email us at mba@amerasiaconsulting.com or contact us via http://www.amerasiaconsulting.com/contact.

For an overview of our MBA admissions consulting services, visit http://www.amerasiaconsulting.com/mba-admissions-consultants-client-commitment/.

If you are looking to further your career in entertainment and media through an MBA, let's talk.

Since 2006, we have worked with applicants from the entertainment media industry – from Hollywood studios to media technology firms, from stalwarts like Disney and Pixar to innovative startup entertainment companies.

What else?

Read our thoughts on what it takes to get a MBA-level job in the entertainment industry.

"Working in the Entertainment Industry is the ultimate career goal for some. The Glitz, the Glamour, and the Gluttony beckon folks from far and wide to Hollywood, New York, Canada, London, and even Bollywood to work. It is a well-known truism that breaking into this super-fortified fortress of employment is not just difficult, it’s notoriously the most impossible industry in the world to catch a break and get your foot in the door. How can you find a way in?"

Source: Getting a Job in the Entertainment Industry with an MBA | Amerasia Consulting Group Blog

Dig deeper into the rankings data

Interested in where we got our numbers? Want to do some further analysis or fact checking? Here is a list of MBA employment reports from top business schools in the US. Have fun.

USC Marshall https://gtscandidate.mbafocus.com/USC/DocumentDownload.ashx?qlpU6JR1tkRAq4E6gfZtNun0tbeFP4L_7OwWgNejy9g1

Berkeley Haas http://haas.berkeley.edu/groups/careercenter/hireanmba/employment-reports.html

UCLA Anderson http://www.anderson.ucla.edu/degrees/mba-program/career-services

Stanford GSB https://www.gsb.stanford.edu/organizations/recruit/employment-reports

MIT Sloan http://mitsloan.mit.edu/career-development-office/employment-reports/mba-current-report/

HBS http://www.hbs.edu/recruiting/mba/data-and-statistics/employment-statistics.html

Wharton http://www.wharton.upenn.edu/mba/your-career/career-statistics.cfm

Kellogg http://www.kellogg.northwestern.edu/career_employer/employment_statistics.aspx

Chicago Booth http://www.chicagobooth.edu/employmentreport/

Columbia https://www8.gsb.columbia.edu/recruiters/employmentreport

NYU Stern http://www.stern.nyu.edu/programs-admissions/full-time-mba/career/employment-statistics

Tuck http://www.tuck.dartmouth.edu/careers/employment-statistics

Yale SOM http://som.yale.edu/yale-som-connect/recruiting/employment-statistics

Michigan Ross http://michiganross.umich.edu/our-community/recruiters

Duke Fuqua http://www.fuqua.duke.edu/mba_recruiting/recruiting_duke/employment_statistics/

Cornell Johnson http://www.johnson.cornell.edu/Career-Management/Employment-Report-for-Two-Year-MBAs

UVA Darden http://www.darden.virginia.edu/recruiters-companies/hire-an-mba/employment-reports/