What many recent college graduates and business professionals struggle with is the decision of whether or not to get their MBA. Besides the extreme costs in tuition for MBA programs, it is also the time that is required to complete the degree successfully that leaves some people questioning whether quitting their current job or delaying paying back college loans is worth it.

According to Glenn Hubbard, dean of Columbia Business School, the decline that we are currently seeing in MBA applications, as demonstrated by Columbia Business School’s 19% drop last year, is not due to a decrease in value of an MBA degree, but rather, MBA degrees are still highly valued today.

Columbia University

Columbia University
Image: Jiri Volejnik via Flickr

In Hubbard’s opinion, the value of an MBA degree outside of the top business schools is hard to defend. Reluctant to disclose his opinion of the top five business schools, Hubbard does claim that all these schools are different yet have something valuable to offer. He believes that the top schools will arm you with the skills and mindset to be a successful business leader.

In the past year Columbia Business School has seen a 9% increase in their MBA applications; so they are certainly making a comeback. Since of the costs of earning an MBA are getting higher, universities are in need of making some drastic changes; Columbia is one of them. Essential classes like statistics, financial accounting, and microeconomics can expect to have portions online. This, according to Hubbard, will ensure that students are receiving the necessary prerequisites. Secondly, having already gained skills from these classes will allow students, for when they do enter a lecture hall, to be able to learn and apply material to real world business situations and problems.

Also on Columbia’s agenda is a re-making of Uris Hall and in some 4-5 years, a new campus with the help of a generous donation by Henry Kravis. To his alma mater, Henry Kravis is donating $100 million. Hubbard has made the point that Uris Hall currently does not reflect learning today. The addition of informal spaces and other changes would make way for innovation and give the opportunity to “reimagine what a business school should look like.”

Feature Image: Rodrigo SEPULVEDA SCHULZ via Flickr