MBAs show growing interest in entrepreneurship

Entrepreneurship has become a forerunner in solving some of the problems faced as the world battled the recent pandemic.

By U2B Staff 

Read all stories

Recent research found that more than 85% of MBA students were drawn to entrepreneurship and said they were interested in entrepreneurship as a career path.

The study was carried out by Illuminate Ventures, a seed-stage venture firm by surveying 500 business school students at more than 20 schools.

The list of 20 schools surveyed included Carnegie Mellon’s Tepper School of Business, the Yale School of Management, and the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

The research found that most of the students chose entrepreneurship as a career path as they were passionate about bringing new ideas to the market.

The rising interest in entrepreneurship can be attributed to their surroundings: 60% of students interested in an entrepreneurial career path had an entrepreneur friend, and over two-thirds had a parent or mentor as a role model.

A majority of the survey respondents already had plans for their entrepreneurship journey with over a third responding that they already had an idea for the start-up venture.


23% of students surveyed revealed that t said they had already founded a business, and an additional 36% said they had worked at an early-stage company.

Additionally, 48% of male respondents and 34% of female respondents said they were already working on an entrepreneurial project.

A large proportion of survey respondents also stated that they did not feel the need to start something of their own. In fact, many said they preferred joining an existing start-up compared to launching their own, especially when starting out.

The survey also found that the main factor that deterred students from pursuing an entrepreneurial career was a concern for financial security after graduation.

However, fears for financial security upon pursuing a career in entrepreneurship may no longer be relevant now and in the near future.


Postgraduate Director of the one-year taught master’s programme at the Centre and Bristol Futures Theme Lead for Innovation and Enterprise, Dave Jarman told U2B last year that entrepreneurship has become the forerunner in solving some of the problems faced as the world battled the recent pandemic.

This outlook is echoed by the World Economic Forum, “Entrepreneurship has taken a lead role in developing contact tracing apps, repurposing factories to manufacture ventilators and PPE, creating makeshift hospitals, and accelerating the search for a vaccine,” it said.

Duncan Chapple, a doctoral researcher at the University of Edinburgh business school who specialises in teaching and researching new ventures and new markets suggests that MBA holders who are looking for careers that can offer the best work-life balance should opt for a career in entrepreneurship.

He explains that as an entrepreneur, an individual has complete control over the amount of time they spend working.