MBA Research
Serving high school and post-secondary educators and administrators
Not-for-profit, research-based support for all Business Administration educators: entrepreneurship, finance, hospitality, management/administration, and marketing.

Business Community

Aligning needs of students and the business community

Our mission is to help ensure that what’s taught in schools aligns with what’s needed for employment and promotion in business.  MBA Research is generally recognized as the premier institution for curriculum research and leadership that supports business administration curricula in high schools and many colleges.

The organization’s preeminent position is the direct result of the continuing support and participation of the nation’s business community.  We are indebted to the thousands of individual business leaders who have contributed their time and expertise over the last 40 years, who have helped ensure the relevance, rigor and reliability of MBA Research’s curricula.

WI Futuring Panel Recap

Over 50 business management, finance, and marketing executives from across Wisconsin joined us last week at Waukesha County Technical College for a round of Futuring Panels. Panelists provided feedback on state and national learning standards, and identified industry trends and skill sets needed by workers in order to be successful in the workplace. The panels were held in conjunction with the WI Department of Public Instruction and the Pathways Wisconsin Project. This research with business executives helps inform our development of classroom applications for you.

Nevada Business Execs Identify Top Industry Trends

Business management, finance, and marketing executives from across Nevada met in separate groups March 26-28 at the Public Education Foundation in Las Vegas to provide feedback on state and national learning standards. Panelists were asked to identify trends within their industry and share skillsets needed by workers in order to be successful in the workplace. Among the top trends identified by panelists were:

  • Decentralized workforce
  • Greater emphasis on technology skills
  • A need to deliver training and information in varied ways based on age/generation of workers
  • Increased need to evaluate ethics around privacy regulations and practices in marketing
  • Increase in project-based work

Companies represented on the panels include City National Bank, Charged Brands, Centauri Health Solutions, The Venetian/The Palazzo/Sands Expo, and Cox Communications.

WV State Legislators and DECA Judges Invited To Join ExecNet

MBA Research has been busy in West Virginia! On Thursday, March 7 we met with the West Virginia Business Education Association (WVBEA) at Nitro High School to talk to WVBEA members about all things MBA. Participants had a chance to learn more about MBA, ask questions, and give feedback about MBA programs. That evening and Friday, we joined WVBEA members and CTE students from across the state for CTE Day at the state capitol. Legislators visited CTE displays throughout the day, learning about many programs including those in business, finance, marketing, and hospitality and tourism management. Students helped us in inviting attendees to join ExecNet and share the importance of standards fueled by business and industry.

We rounded out the weekend by joining WV DECA as hundreds of students were hosted at the Charleston Marriott Town Center. We exhibited and judged student competitions, and the WV DECA team graciously allowed us to present to over 70 judges about ExecNet and invite them to join our program. A host of professionals participated in two different judging series and generously offered their feedback to WV DECA students. State DECA and FBLA conferences provide an awesome opportunity to bring business and industry closer into the fold and let them know how much they are needed (and appreciated!).

The Ohio Affiliate of the National Business Coalition for Education Holds Strategic Planning Session

Our office was buzzing March 6th as members from the Ohio Affiliate of the National Business Coalition for Education met to outline potential strategic initiatives for the group. Led by Group Chair Melinda Huntley of the Ohio Travel Association, the group recognized that one of their biggest challenges was attracting employees to their industries. Subsequently, one of the most important goals set by the group was to increase awareness of career opportunities. While brainstorming, participants acknowledged the need for more communication between business, educators, and students as an underlying strategy to tackle their issues. In an effort to heighten group accomplishments, the Ohio Affiliate decided to meet four times a year, rather than three. In attendance were representatives from the Ohio Travel Association, Ohio Hotel and Lodging Association, Ohio Society of Association Executives, Ohio Society of Certified Public Accountants, Ohio Society of Human Resource Management, Ohio Insurance Institute, and Ohio Department of Education.

We're thankful for the important work done by state coalitions. Learn more about how state groups grow support for education related to business occupations here.

Find Your Ordinary Superpowers

Mark Henson, owner and chief imagination officer at SparkSpace (a business conferencing and retreat center in downtown Columbus), met with 40 Leadership Forum attendees on Sunday, January 27th here at MBA Research. Mark shared the story of his professional journey from DJ to business owner and talked about how he identified and used his own superpowers to "wade through the muck" that threatened his focus on building a successful business.

Mark implored the group to evaluate their own strengths and superpowers and use them to help maintain their focus on building exemplary plans to strengthen business and marketing programs in each of their states. He challenged participants from Alabama, Connecticut, Idaho, Iowa, Kentucky, Ohio, and West Virginia to help potential teacher-leaders around them identify their own qualities that could be utilized to strengthen programs. He reminded the educators in the room that they are in a unique position to help students identify their own individual superpowers and challenged them to help guide students in this area.

Mark is also an author and renowned speaker. He shared a complimentary copy of his book Ordinary Superpowers with each member of the audience. Find out more about Mark here.

Nebraska Affiliate of MBA National Coalition for Business Education Conducts First Meeting of 2019

Turbine Flats, a collaborative working environment in Lincoln, NE, was the latest meeting location for the Nebraska group working to promote business and marketing education in that state.

The Coalition is organizing a panel of executives to meet with Nebraska business, marketing, and IT educators at the Nebraska Career Education Conference in Kearney, NE this June.

The effort is being led by Coalition Chair LaShonna Dorsey of Mutual of Omaha, Sydney Kobza and Jacqui Garrison of the Nebraska Department of Education, and MBA Research.

Meet Some Education Superheroes!

Ohio has recently had a surge of individuals who have indicated that they feel strongly about the education of the future workforce by agreeing to give their perspective in our monthly Executive Advisory Network (ExecNet) surveys. 

Join us in welcoming our newest members: Lee Alexakos, Vice President of Community Relations, Cedar Fair; Paige Alost, Executive Director, Athens Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB); Adria Bergeron, Recreation Marketing Coordinator, Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District; Tami Brown, General Manager and Splash Fund Director, Greater Cleveland Aquarium; Sharrona Burns, Senior Director of Sales, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame; Nicole Cardinale, Director of Sales and Marketing, Gervasi Vineyard; Deana Clark, Executive Director, Marietta-Washington County CVB; Bryan Edwards, Director of Marketing and Communications, Lake Erie Shores and Islands; Pete Fingerhut, Vice President of Marketing and Sales, Columbus Zoo and Aquarium; Brya Long, Director of Operations, Long's Retreat Family Resort; Tonja Marshall, Vice President of Marketing and Communications, Visit Canton; Jim Mahon, Vice President of Marketing and Branding, Akron/Summit CVB; Dan Moder, Executive Director, Explore Licking County; Jamison Pack, Chief Marketing Officer, Ohio History Connection; Amy Rutledge, Director, Carroll County CVB; Melissa Sanders, Public Relations Manager, Ashtabula County CVB; Martha Starkey, Executive Director, Wayne County CVB; and Leiann Stewart, Assistant Director of Group Sales, Miami County CVB. Thanks to each of you for your commitment to the future workforce of Ohio.

Our newest members were introduced to ExecNet by Melinda Huntley, executive director of the Ohio Travel Association and Chair of the Ohio Business Coalition for Education. ExecNet provides a forum for business people to share their knowledge about what it takes for employees to succeed in the business world. 

Business Engagement - The Ohio Manufacturers' Association Joins Hands With the Ohio Business Coalition for Education

MBA Research and Curriculum Center welcomes the Ohio Manufacturers' Association (OMA) to the Ohio affiliate of the MBA Research Business Coalition for Education, a partnership between the Ohio Department of Education, professional/trade associations in Ohio, and MBA Research and Curriculum Center.

The OMA has helped Ohio's manufacturers succeed and grow for over 100 years. OMA members work together to create global competitive advantage for Ohio manufacturing and enhance the quality of life across the state. Today, the OMA is supporting the evolution of modern manufacturing as Ohio companies adapt to global competition by creating and applying innovative technologies.

Rob Brundrett, director of public policy services, will represent the OMA and bring expertise to the group in a number of areas but especially in relation to coalition growth and sustainability, and workforce development.

Kentucky Affiliate Meeting Held on November 9, 2018

Business, industry, and education leaders gathered earlier this month for an organizational meeting of the Kentucky Affiliate to the MBA National Business Coalition for Education. The meeting was held during the Kentucky Association for Economic Development's (KAED) Fall Conference in Covington, Kentucky. The Coalition is a partnership between the Kentucky Department of Education, professional/trade associations in Ohio, and MBA Research and Curriculum Center.

The meeting was led by the Kentucky Coalition Chair, Matt Tackett, president and CEO of KAED. The following associations/organizations were represented:

  • Class Act Federal Credit Union
  • Greater Louisville, Inc.
  • International Association of Administrative Professionals
  • Johnson County Schools
  • Kentucky Chamber of Commerce
  • Kentucky Highlands Investment Corporation
  • Kentucky Network for Development, Leadership and Engagement (KYNDLE)
  • Kentucky Retail Federation
  • Murray State University

The group discussed the Kentucky Essential Skills legislation which passed last spring and will go into effect for the 2019/20 school year. The Coalition is considering developing best practices for schools to use as they implement programs in fulfillment of the new legislation.

Mary Taylor, with the Kentucky Department of Education, presented information about Kentucky's nationally known apprenticeship program, Tech Ready Apprentices for Careers in Kentucky (TRACK). Click here to learn more. 

Coalitions consist of professional/trade associations, foundations, and chambers of commerce working in partnership with their respective state education departments and MBA Research and Curriculum Center. The concept is designed to help strengthen and promote Business Administration programs in Career Technical Education (CTE). 

Ohio Affiliate Meeting Held on October 25, 2018

Business, industry, and education leaders gathered earlier this month for an organizational meeting of the Ohio Affiliate to the MBA National Business Coalition for Education. The meeting was held at MBA Research offices in Columbus, Ohio. The Coalition is a partnership between the Ohio Department of Education, professional/trade associations in Ohio, and MBA Research and Curriculum Center.

The meeting was led by the Ohio Coalition Chair, Melinda Huntley, executive director of the Ohio Travel Association. Making a special presentation to the group was Emily Fabiano, strategy and partnership lead with the Governor's Office of Workforce Transformation. Emily shared information with the group about the OhioMeansJobs-Readiness Seal. She reviewed criteria for earning the Readiness Seal and made suggestions to Coalition members about how to become involved as mentors, or businesses that support the seal. Click here for more information about the Career Readiness Seal. 

Special guests on September 19th also included Joshua Auten, an officer with Ohio State DECA; Alison Forche with Forche Orthodontics; and Kim Pennycuff, marketing instructor at Pickerington North High School. Along with the Ohio Department of Education, they shared information with the group about Business Advisory Councils, and Career and Technical Industry Advisory Councils, and the important role that the councils have in supporting programs at the high school level.

Coalitions consist of professional/trade associations, foundations, and chambers of commerce working in partnership with their respective state education departments and MBA Research and Curriculum Center. The concept is designed to help strengthen and promote Business Administration programs in Career Technical Education (CTE). 

Kentucky Finance Executives Define Their Top Business Trends

Eighteen finance executives from across the state of Kentucky met last week at the Berry Mansion in Frankfort to provide feedback on state and national learning standards. Participants were asked to identify and discuss trends in Kentucky that are affecting and changing the way that businesses are operating. Some of the top trends identified by panelists were:

  • Greater automation of customer transactions
  • Continued globalization of the economy
  • Greater diversity in the workplace
  • Increased regulatory environment
  • Increased use of and rapid changes in technology

Joining the Kentucky Department of Education and MBA Research and Curriculum Center were executives from the accounting, banking services, corporate finance, insurance, and securities and investment industries. Companies represented were Kentucky Society for CPAs; Fowler Durham & Co; Baldwin CPAs; BB&T; Class Act Federal Credit Union; Kentucky Employees Credit Union; The Bankers' Bank of Kentucky; the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis-Louisville Branch; the Kentucky Department for Community Based Services; Advanced Financial Solutions Group; Areva Pharmaceuticals; Humana; Bluegrass International Fund; Meridian Wealth Management; PNC; and Ross, Sinclaire and Associates.

For more information on futuring or validation panels in your state, contact Holly Atha, Director of Business Engagement at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Established in 2012, the MBA Research Business Coalition for Education is a not-for-profit coalition of professional and trade associations and foundations committed to supporting the teaching of critical business concepts and skills in the nation’s high schools. 

All professional associations, trade associations, and many foundations are invited to participate. 

Coalition Mission:  Encourage the teaching of core business skills and economic concepts for college- and career-ready high school curricula.

Chapter Benefits of Membership

  1. Active contribution to the success of high school students locally and nationwide
  2. Recognition as a (non-financial) Chapter Sponsor of student certifications and accredited school programs as offered by MBA Research.
  3. Opportunity for chapter publicity via local and association press, web, and social network (with PR support via MBA Research publicity initiatives)
  4. Member engagement via continuing online and local opportunities facilitated by MBA Research
  5. Chapter and individual member feedback and recognition by MBA Research
  6. Opportunities to participate/present at national conferences of business faculty

Activities of the Coalition

  1. Member participation in online surveys and discussion groups (15 minutes/month) to influence:
    • Business course curricula (national model)
    • Criteria for national student certification exams
    • Student recognition programs (local, state, and national)
  2. Encourage real-world learning opportunities for local students
  3. Recognize high-performing students (locally determined with MBA Research guidance)
  4. Advocate among community leaders as appropriate
  5. Recognize local high school business administration programs that have achieved national accreditation

Requirements of Coalition Membership

  1. Approval of the association board/leadership
  2. Acceptance by MBA Research
  3. Appointment of a key contact
  4. Participation in Coalition planning
  5. Member participation in MBA Executive Advisory Network
  6. Endorsement of National Business Administration Standards derived from Coalition and other business input

The MBA Research Coalition of Professional and Trade Associations is an initiative of the Marketing & Business Administration Research and Curriculum Center (dba MBA Research), a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization. MBA Research was established in 1971 and is operated by a consortium of state education departments. Its mission is to support educators in the preparation of students for careers in business.

For additional information re the Coalition, please email MBA Research at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 800.448.0398.

Bright future for students who study business and marketing

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Large number of jobs in business administration

35% of all jobs available in 2026 will be in management, business and financial operations (including marketing), sales, and office and administrative support.

Source: Employment Projections program, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Data with business administration data highlighted 

High Growth, High Wage

Seven of the top ten fastest growing, high wage jobs are in business, marketing, finance, and sales.

Higher-order thinking crucial in growth jobs

Business administration jobs that utilize lower-level skills will see declines. These include secretaries, administrative assistants, data entry keyers, and office clerks. However, there will still be many jobs available in these areas. For example, in 2026 it is projected that 2.37 million administrative assistants will be needed. (See link to chart for details.)

Access spreadsheet highlighting business administration jobs with largest declines projected 

Employers Seek Business Majors

           Source:, May 2018

Where to find the data

  • National data
    • Bureau of Labor and Statistics captures employment projections
      • Tip: jobs that align with the Career Clusters of Marketing, Business Management & Administration, and Finance are found in the following categories in the BLS data:
        • Management Occupations: 11-0000
        • Business and financial operations occupations: 13-0000
        • Sales and related occupations: 41-0000
        • Office and administrative support occupations: 43-0000

Feedback from ExecNet business leaders across the country is posted here.

Contribute to the future!

MBA Research is funded through a variety of sources, including membership fees from state education departments, sales to schools and various education and training programs, and through project grants for specific research initiatives.

Corporate and private contributions help the organization provide continuing support of local business and marketing curricula – including the support of research used by student organizations such as BPA, DECA, and FBLA.

Contributions to MBA Research are generally tax deductible. (MBA Research is a 501(c)(3) entity, organized as an educational foundation. IRS documentation is available to individuals and organizations considering a contribution.) Contributors should contact their tax advisors for all matters regarding specific deductions.

We would be very grateful for any contribution you find appropriate. Checks should be made payable to: MBA Research and sent to PO Box 12279, Columbus, OH 43212. For tax-deductable contributions by credit card, please call customer service at 800.448.0398, x0.

MBA Research welcomes all opportunities to open dialogue with individuals and organizations interested in supporting our mission to help students better prepare for a future in the world’s private enterprise business community. Please contact Brenda Clark, President/CEO, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The MBA Executive Advisory Network (ExecNet), sponsored by MBA Research, provides a forum for businesspeople to share their knowledge about what it takes for employees to succeed in the business world. This shared knowledge will be given to educators nationwide so that it can become the basis for what is taught in high school and college classrooms. In this way, ExecNet members can help teachers ensure that students develop the know-how for business success.

As part of our ongoing effort to listen to the business community, we convene small focus groups throughout the nation.  Invitations to participate are extended to members of the MBA Executive Advisory Network (ExecNet), our online advisors.  Interested?  It only takes a minute to register.

Document your community service.  Coming soon: Digital badges to document your community service in support of public education.  Badges offer a contemporary, easy way to show you care – on your digital resume, your portfolio, and your social media.  

Schools teach business to help kids prepare for the real world.  High-quality business programs are good for the kids and they’re good for you, for the entire business community. These same young students of business bring with them a positive work ethic, an understanding of basic economics (e.g., why profit is a good thing), and critical skills that contribute to both their and your successes.

But what’s high quality?  We believe that the best business programs are those that teach what matters most to you and the businesses in the community.  High-quality programs provide opportunities for students to experience the ways that business works.  And, these best programs hold kids accountable for their learning – through certifications and assessments consistent with the needs and expectations of business.

In other words, high quality business programs in our schools are dependent on both teachers and students understanding the knowledge and skills that will matter most in the real world – in your world.  And that’s where local business leaders can make a real difference.

Here are several things you can do to help ensure high-quality business programs in your community and across the nation:

  • Advocate:  Make it clear to your school board and to your school administration that high-quality business programs are important to you and your community.
  • Volunteer:  Let your school’s business department chairperson know that you’re interested and willing to help – as a speaker, a mentor, a judge, or an advisor.
  • Sign up:  Join the national MBA Executive Advisory Network and contribute 15 minutes a month – online, at your convenience – helping MBAResearch understand what matters most in curriculum.
  • Bring your association:  Encourage your Chamber and professional associations to join the MBA Business Coalition for Education.  

With your help and encouragement, business administration programs -- high school and college -- across the nation can do amazing things to raise the level of the workforce in your community.  You’re already paying for your schools, why not leverage your tax dollar into high-impact business administration programs that will return direct benefits to you and your community?