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Year over year, our alumni share that the investment in a Booth MBA continues to pay dividends well beyond their time as a student—whether that be the reputation of the Booth brand, strength of the global network, or demonstration of career success. 

With that in mind, it’s important to begin by planning your finances, inclusive of the cost of the program. Here’s some advice from our Office of Financial Aid to help you plan how you can finance your future MBA.

Think beyond the “sticker price”

There’s no denying that there is a cost associated with an MBA. That said, there is a significant return on investment for your degree. Chicago Booth is ranked #1 on Forbes’ list of Best Business Schools—a ranking that focuses on the return on investment for graduates. This helps you to contextualize the distinct advantages of a Booth MBA and the salary expectations you may experience in your future career. You may also be interested to know that within three months of graduation, 97 percent of the Class of 2022 had received a job offer. Hopefully that helps set your mind at ease when it comes to understanding the position you will be in upon graduation.

Know what expenses to expect

A good place to start is by looking at the current cost of attendance. Even if you aren’t planning to apply in this cycle, you can begin now to calculate a close approximation of the budget you’ll need for your MBA program. It’s helpful to see estimates for things such as renting an apartment, buying a computer, food, textbooks, and health insurance. These are all expenses that will need to be factored in.

Plan for the unexpected

Your MBA costs won’t be limited to tuition and the necessities mentioned above. The program will offer ample opportunities to connect with the community through trips and other travel, including:

  • Career Treks to meet alumni and industry leaders in cities across the US and internationally during academic breaks
  • Random Walk trips with fellow incoming classmates before school begins
  • Student-led excursions during Spring and Winter Break with fellow Boothies, such as the annual Ski Trip and trip to Colombia

You may also incur fees associated with student groups. Not to mention the endless possibilities of exploring the city of Chicago. So, make sure you’re able to take full advantage of the MBA experience by planning ahead for these less expected, yet life changing opportunities!

Preview scholarship and financial aid offerings

There are a few ways to fund your MBA at Chicago Booth. The majority of our students fund their MBA through student loans. Typically Boothies are able to pay off their student loans within a few years of graduating. We also offer merit-based scholarships for MBA students and fellowships to selected admitted students. Keep in mind that these awards do not require a formal application process as all applicants are considered upon submission of an MBA application. Any rewards granted are communicated to recipients at the time of admission.

Research other funding options

In addition to applying for federal or private student loans, doing the work to find other funding options will pay off. Does your employer offer MBA sponsorship, or any type of tuition assistance? If so, is it in your best interest to utilize such funds? Are there agencies or associations you know of or are connected to that offer scholarship or fellowship?

When looking for scholarship opportunities online, we recommend browsing scholarship databases that cater specifically to graduate students. To minimize spam, we also advise using a unique email address when using scholarship search websites. The UChicagoGRAD database is also a great institutional resource that lists fellowship opportunities available to graduate students across the University of Chicago.

Getting a handle on your financing doesn’t need to feel daunting. There’s no one right way to fund your education, only a right way for you. For more questions, visit our website or reach us at