MBA recruiting at Kellogg reaches record high: Consulting grads land $200K-plus pay packages

BY Sydney LakeNovember 09, 2022, 6:00 PM
The Global Hub at the Kellogg School of Management. (Courtesy of Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management)

Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management saw record-breaking career outcomes for its full-time MBA grads this year. The No. 3 business school, as ranked by Fortune, saw its graduates land $165,000 median base salaries—a 10% jump from $150,000 last year. 

Grads also earned median signing bonuses of $30,000 and 99% of Kellogg’s most-recent graduating class landed a job within three months of completing their degrees. Continuing the trend at other top-ranked business schools, Kellogg’s employment report illustrates the high demand—and high salaries—for its full-time MBA grads this year.

“The marketplace really wanted talent, and we had the talent,” Liza Kirkpatrick, assistant dean of the Career Management Center at Kellogg, tells Fortune. “Our students really had to overcome COVID, and showed resilience in the process. The market was responsive to that. Our students got the jobs that they were seeking.”

MBA recruitment for consulting jobs reached a record high at Kellogg this year—40% of the graduating class took a job in the field, earning $175,000 median base salaries. Not only did these students land high-paying consulting jobs, but they earned spots at the top three firms in the U.S.: McKinsey & Co., Bain & Co., and Boston Consulting Group. Nearly 150 students of the roughly 1,000 graduates landed jobs with those companies, also known as the MBB firms. 

The Kellogg curriculum particularly focuses on consulting, which makes it a popular field among MBA grads. “Our coursework prepares students for these roles—including hands-on courses in which students act as consultants on projects for real companies,” Kirkpatrick wrote in her blog post about the 2022 employment report results. 

For example, Kellogg’s Analytical Consulting Lab is an experiential learning course that allows students to work on analytics projects for real companies. Last year, ACL students used advanced analytics to help the Chicago Bears develop an improved food and drink pricing strategy, according to Kellogg.

“Not only are you working on real problems, but you’re doing them in real time,” Jasmine Truong, a 2022 Kellogg graduate, previously told Fortune. “This is great for getting to see what current businesses are dealing with while we’re studying the fundamentals in our classes.”

Consulting salaries are also on the rise—not just at Kellogg. Earlier this year, the MBB firms announced salary hikes for the coming year. In 2022, starting base salaries for new MBA grads at the three firms was $175,000. In 2023, they’ll jump again. Bain and McKinsey will offer $192,000 base salaries and BCG will offer $190,000.

“The business world is becoming more and more complex,” Kirkpatrick says. “Consulting firms are looking for students who can be agile and marry the analytical and technical expertise with also this human-centric social intelligence.”

Other MBA employment outcomes at Kellogg

Technology and financial services were also popular career paths for full-time Kellogg MBA grads in 2022. More than 20% of the class took a job in the tech sector, earning a median base salary of more than $145,000. Some of the top tech recruiters included Amazon, Meta, and Alphabet. 

Amazon continues to hire more and more Kellogg MBA grads. This year, the e-commerce giant hired 26 students from Kellogg, which is up from 19 the prior year, according to Kellogg’s employment report.

Students who took jobs in finance earned the highest median base salaries at $170,000. The most popular career paths for these grads were in private equity and venture capital, which are known to have high starting salaries. 

Despite fears related to inflation, quiet quitting, and an ever-evolving job market, Kellogg students showed the power in earning an MBA.

“I hear that some students are nervous about the marketplace,” Kirkpatrick says. “But what I’ve experienced since being at Kellogg—and I started in 2008—has been that there’s always a need for excellent talent. The people who choose to come to Kellogg are strivers, and they do an exceptional job.”

Check out all of Fortune’rankings of degree programs, and learn more about specific career paths.