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Military MBA Combats Perception that Personnel Lack Advanced Education : Published November 2006 All Rights Reserved


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Military MBA Combats Perception that Personnel Lack Advanced Education


Senator John Kerry (D-MA) told college students in Pasadena, CA, that if they did not make the most of their education they would get stuck in Iraq. The comments, made 30 October 2006, prompted Military MBA to make a statement defending the educational level of military personnel in the United States.

After Kerry made the remarks the students present at Pasadena City College laughed at the intended joke, but later in the day Kerry admitted his prepare speech was not written exactly as he paraphrased. Kerry said the example was suppose to draw upon how ill-prepared President George W Bush had been, in hindsight, with the invasion and subsequent occupation of Iraq.

However, education and employment networking organization Military MBA attempted to set the record straight about the educational level of military personnel serving in Iraq and other locations. Military MBA helps military officers and NCOs
(non-commissioned officers) who are interested in obtaining and applying for their MBA graduate degree in order to advance one's  career. The network also works with employers who want to recruit former officers with MBA degrees.

"To settle potential confusion among corporations and offset any negative impact on job candidates with prior military service that could result from Senator Kerry’s remarks in a speech at Pasadena City College this week, MilitaryMBA.net is setting the record straight about military officers and NCOs  and their education and job performance," the organization reported in a statement.

Military MBA admitted that some military personnel "may have a limited education, but a large percentage of officers in uniform have undergraduate and advanced degrees."

After serving in the military many of those former enlists enter the business world with hands-on leadership skills that are in high demand among B-Schools and corporate recruiters the organization reported.

In Military MBA's fact sheet, the organization reported that active duty officers hold a higher level of formal education than the civilian population. Nearly 87 percent of military officers hold either a bachelor's or advanced degree for the most recent reporting year of 2004. Roughly 35 percent of the civilian population has similar degrees.

Additionally, the United States' military positions have grown increasingly technical and complex, especially when compared with the years Kerry served in Vietnam more than 30 years ago. "Consequently, educational requirements will continue to rise." The military is actively recruiting applicants with a college background "while virtually all officers will need at least a bachelor's degree and, in some cases, an advanced degree as well," the statement read.

While men and women serve in active duty, Military MBA reported that leadership skills develop, which puts these service members in line for recruitment from 30 universities, some of which include USC, Duke, Cornell, and Vanderbilt.

Those military personnel with MBAs command a higher than average salary (roughly $102,000 annually,) and "in comparison, the National Center for Education Statistics reported the average salary for civilian MBAs in the United States was $75,000 in 2003."

Military MBA also cited a study by Korn/Ferry International, which correlated military service with a high level of executive performance post service.

"CEOs with prior military experience outperformed CEOs in the S&P 500 index, delivering 30 percent higher returns in three-and five-year investment periods," Military MBA concluded.

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