Sunday, July 31, 2005

Joint JD/MBA Degrees a Bad Idea?

The Vault has an interesting article about joint JD/MBA degrees. In it, the value of having both degrees is questioned: Does the added investment required to get the second degree result in a satisfactory return on investment?

Getting a joint degree most likely requires a full-time commitment that will not be reimbursed by an employer, so a student most likely will need to decide if the additional education is worth making the additional personal investment.

The article notes that not only may a second degree not be beneficial, it may even be detrimental to a job search, because potential employers may percieve as dual degree holders as not being sure about which field they desire to pursue.

Santa Clara University offers a dual JD/MBA degree from its Leavey School of Business and School of Law. In my five years at SCU, I never was on a team with anyone pursuing a dual degree, so I don't think it is that common for students to go for that option. So for a particular postion that could use both JD and MBA skills, having the dual degree could be a major and rare edge. Just how common these types of positions are is the important question.

Here's the article in Vault: Ask Anna: Are Two Degrees Better Than One?


Joe said...

I think the usefulness of the JD/MBA depends on what you want to do with it. I've read the same vault article, and disagree somewhat. I am a current SCU JD/MBA and want to practice finance law (raise capital, mergers, buyouts, structured transactions, debt offerings, etc), so for me the JD/MBA makes sense and will hopefully give me edge. I don't think the JD/MBA is the only way to get there, as you can certainly learn on the job, but I am hoping this might open a few doors sooner.

I wouldn't recommend the program to anyone who isn't sure that they want to practice in a business law setting, it does cost an extra year and the program imho is pretty intense.

Just my two cents.

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