Year 1 (2009-2010) | Year 2 (2011-2012) | Year 3 (2013-2014 Current Analysis)

Best Value MBA Programs for Vets Using 9/11 GI Bill
Year 2009-2010

With funding now available from the New GI Bill, military veterans are weighing their options for getting an MBA degree and committed to find the right school for their education needs. Veterans say military friendly school lists provide no meaningful data that can be used to make an informed decision about enrolling in an MBA school. Magazine rankings are subjective and geared toward traditional, not military, MBA students.

Military MBA wants to help military veterans and their families, using the New GI Bill, to evaluate schools and get a quality MBA degree at the right price. What follows is our complete analysis of the Best Value in MBA Schools.

Explanation of the Chart
The chart above plots total tuition paid by schools and the VA versus the MBA school ranking by US News & World Report. We chose these measures because they offered the best available means to evaluate educational quality and cost to students: in other words, the most bang for the buck. Go here for the methodology of our analysis.

After plotting amounts of tuition waived for veterans against rankings of MBA schools, the data points fell into three clusters. The three groups of schools are listed, and explained, in greater detail below.

University/MBA Schools Total
% Tuition
US News
Dartmouth College
Tuck School of Business
47835 80.4 9389 8
Duke University
Fuqua School of Business
45850 76.3 10850 12
University of Michigan
School of Business
42989 70.5 12661 13
Carnegie Mellon
Tepper School of Business
49200 65.9 16800 15
Washington Univ St. Louis
Olin Business School
42525 76 10209 22
Universtiy of North Carolina                        School of Business 23456 59.7 9456 20
Northwestern University
Kellogg School of Mgmt.
49074 40.8 29074 3
University of Pennsylvania
50430 39.7 30430 3
University of Chicago
Booth School
49020 40.8 29020 5
Anderson Graduate School
35673 48.2 18473 14
Harvard Business School 46150 21.7 36150 1
Cornell University
School of Management
47150 35.7 30302 17
University of Virginia
Darden School
43500 27.6 31500 15
Columbia University
Business School
49728 10.1 44728 9
Georgetown University
McDonough School
41952 11.9 36952 19
Vanderbilt University
Owen Graduate School
41792 47.9 21792 33
University of Notre Dame
School of Business
38860 41.2 22,860 33
Southern Methodist University
37692 50.7 18588 47
Michigan State University
Business School
21690 36.2 13840 40
Rice University
Jones School of Mgmt.
40000 12.5 34990 38
Wake Forest University                            Babcock School of Mgmt. 36750 32.7 24750 51

Our analysis of best value led to a Top 20 list of MBA schools. It is not a ranking, but a defined group of the 20 MBA schools that provide the best value for military veterans. All twenty of these MBA schools should be commended for their many commitments to work with military veterans and their families. Veterans can get an excellent education at any of these schools.

High MBA School Ranking, Large Tuition Waiver
Each MBA school in this category rated high academically and also committed to reduce tuition for veterans, at some of the highest percentages, to lower their overall tuition rates.

High MBA School Ranking, Smaller Tuition Waiver
MBA schools in this group were given high marks for the quality of their MBA programs, but committed less funding relative to other schools to help veterans offset high costs of tuition. The challenge next year for this group of MBA schools will be to step up their financial commitments to veterans, which the VA will subsequently match, to make their programs even more valuable. Even so, four out of nine MBA schools in this category reduced their tuition 40%-50% for veterans and their families.

Lower MBA School Ranking, Smaller Tuition Waiver
Even though some of these schools may not rate as high academically, there are many outstanding MBA programs in this cluster. It is encouraging that two out of five MBA schools in Group III finished in the top half of all MBA schools providing the most tuition aid to veterans this year.

In order to perform this analysis we sorted through data supplied to the Dept. of Veterans Affairs (VA) from 7,000 participating institutions of higher learning. Out of this nationwide group we located approximately 50 MBA schools committed to tuition waivers, which are then matched 100% by VA as part of the Yellow Ribbon Program. Of these 50 institutions, we found that there were 20 MBA Schools that offered tuition waivers and were ranked in the top 55 by US News & World Report. We then divided the total tuition by the total of the amount waived by the universities plus the VA matching funds to arrive at the total percentage tuition covered. The resultant percentages of tuition waived were plotted on the vertical axis.