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Question about business careers after high school?

What courses do you recommend taking in both college and high school if I’m looking to get a business major. Also about how long does it take to get a major?

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Subject: Career question for you

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Katherine’s Answer

Business is a very broad area of study, so I definitely suggest finding opportunities to figure out what area you're interested in before applying to college. Business can be entrepreneurship, marketing, accounting, financial management, etc. You'll want to figure out what area of business you're interested in because then you can apply to schools that have a strong program in your business area of interest, like marketing. A lot of universities will have multiple business majors offered too, so knowing which one you're interested in will help keep you focused in school; some school make it easy to switch between different business majors, but make sure to do that research.

Since you're still in high school, participate in student organizations to learn from other students. When I was in high school, I was in the Future Business Leaders of America. There are student competitions in areas like entrepreneurship, accounting, marketing, etc. Make sure to take electives if you can too. Taking a class in some subject area might lead you to determine you love or hate a particular subject.

If you have time while in school, try picking up a part time job or a summer internship. Look on sites like LinkedIn and Indeed for high school internships at large corporations that are in your area and small businesses too. Large corporations will have resources for training and might offer a variety of different positions, but small businesses might have you work in multiple areas of the business to gain experience in multiple areas of business.

Katherine recommends the following next steps:

Participate in student organizations that focus on business
Take electives in various areas of business if available (marketing, entrepreneurship, business law)
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Brooke’s Answer

In high school, I would try to take a variety of courses and learn what you like and dislike. Better to be well rounded and it will help you decide on your focus or minor in college.

Try to take AP courses and earn college credits to get some college Gen Eds out of the way. Definitely work with your Guidance Counselor to help make sure the courses carry over to colleges you are interested in attending.

Earning a Bachelor of Science (BS) typically takes 3-4 years but could take longer. The more Gen Eds you knock out in high school, the less courses you may need for your program.

Good luck!

Brooke recommends the following next steps:

Talk to your guidance counselor to see what courses are available in high school and see if there are any AP courses that potentially carry over to college credits
Thank you comment icon I appreciate your support, Brooke Samuel
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Valentina’s Answer

I echo what's been said above and think it's great that you already have a clear idea of what you want to study in college! I'll answer the second part of your question first: it takes anywhere from 3-5 years to graduate from a traditional bachelor's full-time program depending on how many units you take per semester or quarter (different schools function on different systems). If you overload, you'll be able to finish up faster! but there's also absolutely nothing wrong with taking your time and graduating a bit later :) It's all your process and up to how many courses you want to take during your time at school!

In terms of wanting a business degree, there are different options. You could attend an undergraduate program that has something to do with business (economics, accounting, marketing, etc.) and then get a graduate degree at a business school (Master's in Business Administration or equivalent) or you could attend an undergraduate business program which doesn't quite get you an MBA degree, but you take most of the same courses. A lot of companies you could work at in the future may pay for these MBA or graduate management/business master's degrees as well.

My biggest piece of advice when it comes to a "business" career is that what folks choose to study varies greatly! Choose what makes you happy and focus on companies/roles in the future that you're interested in working at :)
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Gregory’s Answer

In high school, I would suggest taking any economics or business related electives. While I was in high school, there was micro and macro economics, which I really enjoyed and found useful. Additionally, you can start to listen to podcasts and daily emails to learn about the business world around you. I would suggest Morning Brew for daily email. It is really short and easy to read. If you prefer to listen to your information, I would suggest Wall Street Journal's "Your morning briefing". Lastly, if you are interested in economics as well I think a really fun podcast/book is Freakanomics. These media methods will be really helpful for you because you will learn if you really like business/economics and you will come off very knowledgeable in your college essays and interviews.

When you get to college the classes will be more obvious and tailored to what you are trying to learn. Most college should show the different courses they offer online and you can get an idea of the requirements and types of things you can learn. I would also encourage you to step out of the box and learn other things like computer science to supplement your business knowledge. I feel like I got a lot more interviews and job offers from top companies (Federal Reserve, Goldman, & McKinsey) once I had some knowledge of coding.
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Pedro’s Answer

Hi Samuel. I work as a management consultant for businesses, and I have studied business management, finance and economics.

In high school, I would say it's very helpful to study mathematics (as advanced as you can), and if your school offers, introductory courses to accounting and economics. You can also start to get experience by working in a business in your area of interest part-time or even starting your own small business.

If you decide to continue pursuing your studies in college, I would advise for similar topics: consider taking economics, accounting, finance, marketing, operations management, and maybe workshops or courses on entrepreneurship and business management. Again, if you are interested in having your own business or investing, I would highly advise you to try this as well, as it will provide valuable first-hand knowledge.

In both high-school and college, I would also encourage you to consider to practice your organizational and leadership skills: Join the student association/ union in your school and apply for a leadership position. In businesses, especially in larger businesses, it's important to be able to work and lead all kinds of people.

Pedro recommends the following next steps:

Research and consider joining student associations or groups in your school
Research available courses related to the areas above in your school and consider enrolling in them
Go to your local library and borrow a couple of business books that interest you, and read them
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