Written by ACHS Dean of Business Dr. Susan Marcus
ZipRecruiter currently shows over 330,000 “Sustainability jobs” and defines the category this way:
The goal of most sustainability jobs is to promote sustainable practices, encourage social responsibility, create or improve sustainable products and solutions, and plan environmentally-friendly changes. A sustainability consultant helps a company plan and implement more sustainable operations, while the duties of an environmental engineer or scientist include studying, creating, and improving current practices. Sustainability educators work to educate people about the importance of working to protect the environment. Other professionals work in specialized fields such as investment planning for socially-conscious investors.
Titles include Sustainability Manager, Senior Sustainability Coordinator, Remote Sustainability Project Manager, Sustainability Specialist and Sustainability Program Analyst. The national average for sustainability job salaries is $73,368.
But why limit your opportunities to whether a word is in the title and job description? Having principles of sustainability and wellness embedded throughout an MBA curriculum uniquely prepares you to perform any job better. You will have studied how organizations can do well financially — in most cases, better — while simultaneously planning ahead, diversifying resources (both natural and human), and treating stakeholders as if they matter.
As discussed in the first post in this series, an MBA is fundamentally a management degree. The knowledge and skills developed during our courses can be applied in an entrepreneurial setting, for advancement in a organization, or towards a career transition.
Occupational areas of opportunity
According to the Department of Labor’s O*Net Occupational Information Network, Standard Occupational Code 11-1021.00 General and Operations Managers provides the closest alignment with the MBA definition and is described this way: Plan, direct, or coordinate the operations of public or private sector organizations, overseeing multiple departments or locations. Duties and responsibilities include formulating policies, managing daily operations, and planning the use of materials and human resources, but are too diverse and general in nature to be classified in any one functional area of management or administration, such as personnel, purchasing, or administrative services. Usually manage through subordinate supervisors. Excludes First-Line Supervisors. Job titles in this category include, Business Manager, General Manager (GM), Operations Director, Operations Manager, Plant Superintendent, Store Manager.
With respect to growth, the site places this segment in the “Faster than average (5% to 7%)” category with 204,400 projected openings between 2019-2029. We can automate a lot of areas, and will still need managers capable of meeting performance goals and identifying ways to stay innovative! (Be sure to explore salary levels in your area using the look-up instrument towards the bottom of the O*Net page.)
The site also maintains a list of “Bright Outlook Occupations” for which growth projections are in the 5-7% range. You will find a large number of managerial, health, and health-related categories on this list, along with Sustainability Specialist where the focus is to “[a]ddress organizational sustainability issues, such as waste stream management, green building practices, and green procurement plans.” Another sustainability-related role is that of Chief Sustainability Officer whose duties are to “[c]ommunicate and coordinate with management, shareholders, customers, and employees to address sustainability issues. Enact or oversee a corporate sustainability strategy.”
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Healthcare sector is expected to grow at an even higher rate: “Employment in healthcare occupations is projected to grow 15 percent from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations, adding about 2.4 million new jobs. Healthcare occupations are projected to add more jobs than any of the other occupational groups.” If you are drawn to making a difference in this industry sector, having an MBA from a school with “Healthcare Sciences” in its name can’t hurt!
Program design in support of career and professional goals
We designed our program with versatility in mind. The degree is not specifically named an “MBA in Sustainability,” it is simply an MBA. This means that depending on the career or entrepreneurial path you take, certain aspects of your MBA work can be emphasized and highlighted in your resumé, cover letter, and in conversations with potential employers. For example, if you select electives from the Integrated Health and Wellness Pathway, you’ll likely want to draw attention to that. If you are seeking advancement or initial employment in a specific organization, you will highlight aspects of your MBA program that align with the particular position and organizational goals you discover through your networking and research. Moreover, you will have “MBA” after your name, and how you frame and highlight your specific skills and competencies will depend on your goals. Our Alumni and Career Services pros and your instructors are here to assist. You have a team of supporters in this with you!
Organizational priorities in the 21st century
Every organization is concerned about performance. And for many, principles of sustainability are becoming increasingly important, especially as consumers express preferences for aligning spending habits with their values. At the same time, there are often differing levels of commitment, even within the same organization. That is where a deep understanding of how sustainability is directly and positively connected to managing risk comes in. And you will have plenty of practice with this, applying the readings and other resources through assignments, always in a context that is relevant to you.
Organizations are also increasingly interested in employee health and wellness. Our program brings these topics together, providing the opportunity to develop expertise that represents high value for public, private, and nonprofit organizations in all sectors.
The bottom line is this: you will be successful in the job you set your sights on and have a passion for. Through the ACHS MBA program, you’ve trained for it! Your confidence and competence will become part of who you are. You will have a portfolio of examples, in actual context, that help show who you are and what you are capable of bringing to an organization. An MBA program, especially one with a focus on sustainability and wellness, will prepare you to stand out from the crowd with a perspective that guides the way to measurable results for enterprises of all sizes and types. More questions? Contact me anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to discuss how the ACHS MBA can help you reach your personal and professional goals!
If you’re ready to apply to an online MBA program with ACHS, you can start your application here. If you’re interested in starting out with a single business course, start your single course application here.
Still wondering what to expect during the application process? An admissions advisor is happy to speak to you at a time that works for you. Schedule an appointment with an admissions advisor here.
Watch for our next blog in this series entitled, Who are the instructors teaching in the ACHS MBA program?
About American College of Healthcare Sciences
American College founded in 1978, is a fully online accredited institute of higher education specializing in holistic health. Based in Portland, OR; our goal is to make research-driven and science-based holistic health education taught by industry-leading experts accessible to anyone anywhere while still giving students a hands-on experiential learning experience like a traditional college and a strong sense of community, school pride and student bond.
This commitment to our students and graduates reflects in our current survey results that reflect 98% of our students would recommend ACHS to a friend or family member.
We believe education is the most powerful tool for changing an individual and the world around us.
When a person enrolls as ACHS, it is vitally important that they graduate with tools they need to forge their own holistic and sustainable missions, build up their communities confidently and changing the face of healthcare with knowledge.