Business Schools in Oregon
Oregon is home to more than 40 schools with business programs offered both on-campus for traditional students and online for students that need a more flexible option to accommodate work and family life. You’ll find a program that aligns with your goals, whether you’re an undergrad looking for an associate’s or BBA with a specialized focus or a mid-career professional looking to refocus your career through an executive MBA program in marketing, accounting or finance, or even a more specialized areas like sustainable business or nonprofit management.
Marketing Degree Programs in Oregon
State of Oregon’s Marketing Industry
The roses are blooming again in Oregon. From 2007-2012, the Beaver State had the second-best average growth in the nation and forecasts look favorable, according to Forbes. It has a good labor supply, substantial international ties (especially with Asia) and – courtesy of its hydroelectric dams – low energy costs.
Though manufacturing, tourism, agriculture, forestry and fisheries still dominate the industry mix, the state is diversifying rapidly. Nike is Oregon’s biggest baby (2012 sales were in the $21 billion range). Further down the Fortune 500 list you’ll also find Precision Castparts.
The marketing sector can’t compete with its neighbors California and Washington, but it’s making a little bit of headway. In 2012, there were four Oregon advertising and marketing names on Inc.’s Top 5000 list of America’s fastest growing private companies. From 2008-2011, PCD Group grew 92% ($4.1 million in revenue).
Job Prospects for Oregon Marketing Graduates
Job prospects for Oregon marketing graduates look strong. From 2010-2020, Oregon’s Employment Department is projecting openings for market research analysts will grow by 21.7% (334 jobs), PR specialists by 15.3% (332 jobs) and marketing managers by 21.3% (606 jobs). Compare this last figure to the national average of 14%.
Marketing salaries fall in the middle of the national pack. In 2011, the average median income for an Oregon market research analyst was $60,100 (just below the U.S. median of $60,300). For an Oregon marketing manager it was $94,600 (compared to the U.S. median of $116,000).
If work in manufacturing or tourism isn’t your style, there are alternatives. You may recognize the name of Portland’s most lucrative ad agency: Wieden+Kennedy (a Super Bowl perennial). Other well-known Portland marketing firms include R2C Group, HMH, CMD and Borders Perrin Norrander.
Oregon Schools for Marketing
There are 14 accredited marketing schools in Oregon – all built to withstand the rainy days. Here are two options to compare:
1. University of Oregon (UO) (http://lcb.uoregon.edu/)
Ranked #91 in “Best Business Schools” by U.S. News & World Report in 2013, UO’s Lundquist College of Business offers a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a concentration in marketing, a full-time or accelerated MBA, and a doctorate in marketing.
The school has a sturdy reputation for sports business and entrepreneurship, and the undergraduate marketing management program gets top marks from Bloomberg BusinessWeek (ranked #14 in nation). Students are encouraged to enroll in internships and study-abroad programs.
2. Oregon State University (OSU) (http://business.oregonstate.edu/)
Students at OSU’s College of Business, accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, can pursue a Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts in marketing or an MBA with a marketing and market research track (a useful focus, since market research analysts promise to be one of the nation’s fastest-growing occupations through 2020).
The college received more than $262 million in research funding in 2011, helping to drive innovation (more than 20 start-up and spinoff companies have arisen from OSU research since 2004). The college also manages the largest international business exchange program in the state.
Professional Marketing Organizations in Oregon
Oregon’s marketers are typically a laid-back and social bunch. If you’re looking for networking opportunities, job boards and continuing education options, you might want to take a look at some of these marketing organizations:
- AdFedCO (https://www.facebook.com/AdFedCO/): Central Oregon chapter of the American Advertising Federation
- AMA PDX (http://www.ama-pdx.org/): Portland chapter of the American Marketing Association
- EMA (http://www.emeraldmarketingassociation.com/): Emerald Marketing Association
- ODMO (http://www.oacvb.com/): Oregon Destination Marketing Organizations
- SMPS Oregon (http://www.smpsoregon.org/): Society for Marketing Professional Services: Oregon
Business Degree Programs in Oregon
Oregon attracts big and burgeoning businesses alike due to its business-friendly tax structure. In 2016, Oregon had the lowest effective tax rate of all states, according to the state agency, Business Oregon.
It’s competitive business cost structures attracts large, well-known corporations—such as Facebook, Google, Amazon, and Apple—which all have built data centers in Central Oregon.
One predictably large industry in Oregon is outdoor gear, since the state’s beach, mountains, and deserts are all within a few hours’ drive. This is why major outdoors corporations, such as Keen, Dakine, Ruffwear, and LaCrosse-Danner, have set up their headquarters in the state.
Another bustling Oregon industry is software development. Portland’s supply of talented programmers, designers, and suppliers has attracted major software firms, such as Salesforce.com, ebay, Urban Airship, Jama, and Aruba Networks.
Oregon is also home to large corporations that rank as some of the most profitable in the world, supporting jobs for business school graduates who have studied accounting, marketing, HR management, finance and more.
Fortune 500 company headquarters located in Oregon included (2014):
- Nike in Beaverton – $27,779 million revenue
- Precision Castparts in Portland – $9,640 million revenue
- Lithia Motors in Medford – $5,403 million revenue
- StanCorp Financial Group in Portland – $2,770 million revenue
- Schnitzer Steel Industries in Portland – $2,544 million revenue
- Columbia Sportswear in Portland – $2,101 million revenue
With its quickly growing industries—such as advanced manufacturing, clean technology, high technology, and forestry and wood products—Oregon’s business schools offer specialized programs in such areas as sustainable business, as well as more traditional concentrations, like entrepreneurship, finance, marketing, operations management and business administration.
With this kind of education background, business professionals can aspire to launch their own small business or fill corporate positions in established companies, competing for jobs in sales, HR, marketing, accounting and more.
Highly specialized education is often rewarded in Oregon with corporate leadership positions. In 2014, the US Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov) published the median income for some of Oregon’s top business occupations:
- Chief Executives – $177,980
- Marketing Managers – $103,000
- Sales Managers – $109,250
- Information Systems Managers – $112,640
- Financial Managers – $105,370
- Training and Development Managers – $100,110
- Financial Analysts – $97,590
Small Businesses are Vital to the Oregon Economy
Oregon’s economy relies on its creative, innovative, and quick-thinking entrepreneurs, like Owen Dearing. Dearing had been a potter since 1990, but after attending a local Oregon business school and implementing new marketing strategies, his online business, Mug Revolution, began receiving international requests and his sales skyrocketed by 29 percent.
Dearing’s mugs reflect Oregon’s eco-consciousness, and using lead free glaze and non-toxic clay has distinguished his small Bend-based studio from other ceramic product producers.
Mug Revolution was just one of the many small businesses thriving in Oregon.
Oregon’s business incubators, accelerators, networks, finance programs, and private-public programs such as Oregon InC, all contribute to the thriving creation and development of small businesses.
In 2015, Oregon’s leading entrepreneurs were opening firms in the state’s leading industries which employed:
- Professional, scientific, and technology services – 153,830 individuals
- Health care and social assistance – 278,614 individuals
- Retail – 250,775 individuals
- Manufacturing – 202,653 individuals
- Finance and insurance – 91,085 individuals
Oregon State College of business offers flexible and relatively affordable on-campus options for Master of Business Administration (MBA) candidates. The traditional MBA offers both customary and unique areas of concentration such as clean technology, commercialization, executive leadership, financial planning and wealth management, international operations and supply chain management and marketing management. You can also choose the thesis option if you can align your research interest with a faculty member’s interests. In addition, the school offers an MBA with a focus on accountancy and a dual degree program that combines a Doctor of Pharmacy with an MBA. The school is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).
The Marylhurst MBA is the largest program of its kind in Oregon and is consistently rated among the best in the West. The school offers several pathways to completion, including full time, part time, on campus and online, allowing you to pursue your degree at your own pace and customize it for your own career goals. You learn through a blend of theory, case studies and simulation, as well as hands-on collaboration. The Saturday MBA is a once-a-week program with a peer group that stays together from beginning to end. If you can’t get to campus, Marylhurst offers a fast-paced online MBA option that takes 18 months to complete. The bulk of Marylhurst MBA candidates are working adults with significant professional experience.
The University of Oregon’s Charles H. Lundquist College of Business builds its MBA programs around its centers of excellence: active lifestyles, environmental awareness, financial stewardship, innovation and entrepreneurship. The school’s full-time MBA is designed for the candidate with a non-business undergraduate degree. The core curriculum provides a solid business foundation to which you add electives to fit your track of concentration. If you have a strong academic record in business, high GMAT scores and work experience, you may qualify for the intensive MBA, which can be earned in nine to 11 months. Areas of concentration offered are innovation and entrepreneurship, finance and securities analysis, sports business and sustainable business practices. The school also offers dual degree programs that combine a Juris Doctor or a Master of Arts with an MBA.
The University of Portland’s Dr. Robert B. Pamplin, Jr. School of Business Administration offers a traditional MBA experience across six areas of concentration: entrepreneurship, finance, healthcare, marketing, sustainability and operations technology management. The school also offers an Executive MBA in Nonprofit Management. Both options are only available on campus. The program requires 36 to 39 semester hours, which can be completed in as little as a year or as long as five years. In addition to the on-campus experience, you can participate in optional overseas study programs.
Willamette University’s MBA options are geared toward a range of career goals. The full-time MBA is designed for candidates early in their careers or those thinking of changing careers. The immersive program provides you with the business basics along with career management advice to help you focus on a specific area. The MBA for Professionals is for working candidates who want to put what they learn to immediate use in their jobs. Classes are scheduled in the evenings to make it possible to combine your studies with work. In addition to these on-campus programs are three exchange programs: many students take advantage of semesters abroad studying at the Bordeaux Management School (BEM) in Bordeaux, France, the Copenhagen Business School (CBS) in Copenhagen, Denmark or the EM Strasbourg School of Business (EMS) in Strasbourg, France.