The Carlson School building in summer.

Why to Choose an Undergraduate Business Degree from the Carlson School of Management

Thursday, May 16, 2024


An undergraduate business degree lays the foundation for a successful and rewarding career in today's competitive job market. The Carlson School of Management offers a comprehensive curriculum and many experiences to ensure that students are well-prepared for the future. 


A Life-Changing Educational Experience

The Carlson School curriculum is built to prepare you with both the technical and soft skills you need to succeed in business. Our curriculum is built on three pillars, with three corresponding signature experiences:

  • People & Planet: The Carlson School will provide you with the tools you need to make a positive impact on the world, through classes on design thinking, ethics, and leadership. 
  • Data & Decisions: You will learn how to analyze information and make essential business decisions in a complex world.
  • Foundations & Impact: The Carlson School will give you the foundation you need to effectively collaborate with your future colleagues, and choose the major that’s best for you. 
A student raises her hand in class.

At the Carlson School, you’ll interact with professors who are among the best in their field. And, you’ll get to know them one-on-one; most of our classes have less than 60 students.

Our faculty are engaging in cutting-edge research, and are also committed to the undergraduate classroom experience.

Colin Brandt, ‘27 BSB, shared that by attending office hours with Dr. Yelena Hyrdrie, he could provide input to Dr. Hydrie better to understand the class and his expectations as a student. Furthermore, he found that she was incredibly helpful, understanding, and flexible when it came to assisting him. Brandt also highlighted how Dr. Hydries's course, Leading Self & Teams, allowed him to gain a broader understanding of effective leadership by pushing him and his classmates into uncomfortable situations.

​​According to Niko Vasilopoulos, ‘25 BSB, the President of the Carlson Student Body, “The number one thing that sets Carlson apart is its experiential learning.” The Carlson School has four enterprises that undergraduate students can join: Funds, Brand, Consulting, and Ventures. Participating students work in small teams to address the real-world challenges of client businesses, which expect real-world results. It’s an in-depth professional and transformational experience that few business schools offer. Students in the “Funds Enterprise”, for example, help manage an investment fund of over $50 million dollars.

“Being trusted to work on client-facing projects as an undergrad has allowed me to feel immensely more confident as a business student,” Niko Vasilopoulos '25 BSB.

Additionally, every Carlson School student undertakes an international experience. The world is increasingly interconnected, and the international experience will prepare you to be a global business leader while building cultural competencies. Zachary Groh, ‘27 BSB, had the opportunity to go to London through the IBUS 2021 Design Your Career in a Global Context program.

Groh shared, “I was able to explore the beautiful city of London and learn about its business culture having site visits to Google, NBCUniversal, London Business School, BritishAmerican Business, Citi Bank, and many more. This privilege allowed me to make connections and learn about business in a global context hands-on. Through this, I now have an enhanced understanding of global business and am highly thankful for all the new connections. It has allowed me to have a better understanding of how to shape my own future. The program was truly eye-opening and allowed me to make so many new and valuable connections along with business exposure.”


Two students meet at College Day

Strong Community and Student Life

Through exposure to dozens of co-curricular activities and student organizations, undergraduate business students can gain invaluable leadership experience. Susie Ritter, ‘24 BSB, who serves as the Student Marketing Association (SMA) President at the Carlson School, said, “The Student Marketing Association has shown me the impact of making and maintaining strong connections. Although our board has always had professional relationships with one another, it's the personal connections that have helped our club succeed so well”.

From clubs like Women in Business to business fraternities like Alpha Kappa Psi and Delta Sigma Pi, which encourage leadership and involvement, opportunities to gain leadership experience and build your network while pursuing an undergraduate business degree at the Carlson School are endless.  

Building your network is critical to a successful career - in fact, many jobs are filled through professional connections. As an undergraduate student at the Carlson School, you’ll attend career fairs, connect with alumni, have access to a myriad of student organizations, and so much more. Plus, your fellow students can serve as mentors, future business partners, and lifelong friends.

You’ll also become part of the Carlson School alumni network, which consists of 60,000 alumni in 102 countries.


Two students talk to a recruiter at a Career Fair

Preparation for Professional Success

In 2023, the average starting salary of a Carlson School graduate was $69,991. That’s 25 percent higher than the average college graduate salary!

The Carlson School is located in the heart of the Twin Cities, giving undergraduate students easy access to jobs, internships, and networking. Fifteen Fortune 500 companies are headquartered right here, and the Carlson School has strong relationships with all of them. Plus, as a University of Minnesota student, you’ll receive a free transit pass making it even easier to access downtown Minneapolis and St. Paul.

The Student Life & Career Design team is made up of professionals who are committed to your career development journey. You’ll have access to all sorts of professional development resources, including guaranteed 1:1 career coaching, resume and cover letter support, networking workshops, and more. In fact, one of our required core classes, Design Your Career, is all about building foundational career skills.

All of this support translates into excellent employment outcomes - 96.4% of undergraduate students are employed within 90 days of graduation.

If you’re not sure of your path yet, you can be confident in the flexibility of a business degree. For example, Gurasis Singh, ‘26 BSB served as the District Curriculum & Strategy Intern for Rochester Public Schools. At his internship, Gurasis greatly impacted Rochester Public Schools “by making two academic programs for students.” Through his experience, Singh learned that he wants “more impact-driven work in the future.” From Public School systems to Health Service positions, the scope of a business degree isn’t confined to the corporate world.


Come as you are. Leave even greater.

An undergraduate business degree from the Carlson School will foster personal growth and empower you to enhance your career and life potential.  

“With endless opportunities and a reputable name, I am able to hone in my soft skills, while also learning new technical skills I can utilize in my future job. I have made countless friends through clubs and extracurriculars - they truly help me be a better person and grow each day.” - Callie Korth, '24 BSB

Every undergraduate student enters our program with unique interests, skills, and goals. Through hands-on learning, personalized support, and meaningful connections, you will graduate with the skills you need to chase your dreams.


How to Apply