Business Schools in Rhode Island


Earn your MBA online through Capella University and serve as a leader in your field. Capella’s accredited online MBA program lets you customize your education by choosing from 11 focus areas most relevant to today’s business leaders. Make your move today by requesting information about Capella University’s online MBA program.

Syracuse University’s online MBA through the Whitman School of Management is designed to give students the analytical and decision-making skills they need to advance their careers in today’s business environment

[email protected], the online MBA from American University is designed for domestic and global business professionals who want to start or advance their career.

Students in Rhode Island can choose from around 10 schools with business programs, in addition to the many online programs that are available in a wide range of specializations through schools that accept students from around the country.

Marketing Degree Programs in Rhode Island

State of Rhode Island’s Marketing Industry

Rhode Island’s economy is having a rough time post-recession. In 2012, the state had the second-highest unemployment rate (after Nevada) (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (, 2011), the second-fewest relocators to the state (after Michigan) (Forbes in 2012) and prohibitive business taxes. Chase Bank economists predicted in 2012 that it will continue to lag behind the national economy for quite a while.

On the positive side, the Ocean State has strong education and health care industries, a developing biotech sector and low labor costs relative to regional competitors. Currently the state depends heavily on the fortunes of finance, real estate and healthcare – if they’re doing well, Rhode Island’s marketing industry is generally doing well.

There are only two Fortune 500 companies in the state, as of 2012 – CVS Caremark and Textron – but plenty of large hospitals and banks. The economic hub is Providence, home to Citizens Bank, the 15th largest bank in the nation in 2012. Other large employers include Bank of America, Rhode Island Hospital, Women and Infants Hospital, and The Miriam Hospital.

Job Prospects for Rhode Island Marketing Graduates

With baby boomers retiring from the professional service sector, job prospects for Rhode Island marketing graduates look pretty good.

Over the years 2010-2020, the state’s Department of Labor and Training is projecting there will be 328 new openings for marketing managers, 473 for PR specialists, 91 for PR managers and 527 for market research analysts. This last stat propelled the analysts onto the Department’s list of “Fastest Growing Occupations.

Predictably, some of the jobs will be in finance – Rhode Island is the headquarters of FM Global and Amica Mutual Insurance – but you may also find luck with diverse businesses like Hasbro, GTECH Corporation and Nortek.

Or you could try agencies. RDW Group and Duffy & Shanley are a couple of well-known names, but don’t discount rising stars. Ventures grew 24% from 2008-2011, adding seven new jobs and $1.2 million in revenue.

Rhode Island Schools for Marketing

There are eight accredited marketing schools in Rhode Island. Here are two to check out:

1. Bryant University (

Accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, Bryant’s College of Business offers a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a concentration in marketing, as well as an MBA. The college was named one of “The Best 296 Business Schools” by the Princeton Review and its part-time MBA was ranked #162 in the nation by U.S. News & World Report in 2013.

Undergraduates are encouraged to participate in study-abroad programs, internships and service learning experiences. The two-year MBA incorporates a “Global Immersion Experience” for all students.

2. University of Rhode Island (URI) (

URI’s College of Business Administration is the only Rhode Island institution with accredited programs at all academic levels. That includes a Bachelor of Science with a major in marketing, a one-year and part-time MBA (ranked #170 by U.S. News & World Report) and a doctorate in business administration with a focus on marketing.

Students can apply to participate in internships as well as the National Student Exchange program or URI’s study-abroad programs. The school is fully accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.

Professional Marketing Organizations in Rhode Island

There’s not much of Little Rhody, and marketing organizations in the state are few. Check out the two below for networking events and continuing education opportunities:

Business Degree Programs in Rhode Island

Small business is a big deal in American’s smallest state.

Rhode Island’s business schools design programs for students interested in becoming future leaders in small businesses and large corporations alike, offering undergraduate and graduate degree programs with business concentrations in areas like entrepreneurial management and strategic innovation.

The state’s business schools also offer highly specialized “green business” bachelor’s and MBA programs. Graduates of these programs earn a dual degree in business and environmental economics, which gives them the skills they need to develop innovative business models that keep Rhode Island’s most pressing environmental concerns in mind.

Just because small businesses flourish in Rhode Island’s economy does not mean that big businesses don’t.  Seven Fortune 500 companies – the companies with the highest amount of revenue throughout the country—have their headquarters in Rhode Island.

This includes household name, CVS Health, which is based in Woonsocket. In 2014, CVS earned $139,367 million in revenue, earning it the number 10 spot on Fortune 500’s list of top 500 businesses in the nation.

Other top Fortune 500 companies in Rhode Island include Textron, the aerospace and defense provider in Providence; United Natural foods in Providence; FM Global, the property insurance corporation in Johnston; Hasbro, the sporting goods company in Pawtucket; and more.

Rhode Island’s Most Innovative and Fastest-Growing Companies

Rhode Island’s leading, most innovative, and fastest-growing companies for the three-year period preceeding 2016 that made the top 500 list were small businesses. These small business were in the human resources, education, and technology industries, and included:

  • ChartWise Medical Systems in Wakefield – 617% growth, $4 million revenue
  • A Child’s University in Cranston –133% growth, $2.5 million revenue
  • The Copley Consulting Group in East Greenwich – 106% growth, $6.9 million revenue
  • Atrion in Warwick – 58% growth, $120 million revenue

Clearly, small businesses do not mean small revenue.

Business students who want to become a part of these burgeoning small businesses often earn their bachelor’s degree in business or MBA in entrepreneurship, which gives them the tools to manage all aspects of business, including human resources, marketing, leadership, organizational design, international dimensions, and consumer relationships.

What Business Professionals in Rhode Island Earn

For the country’s smallest state, Rhode Island’s businesses pay big. In May 2014, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics ( ranked Rhode Island among the most lucrative states in the nation for chief executives, with the average annual income for CEOs in the state being $207,910 that year.

Rhode Island also consistently ranks among the more lucrative states in other specialized business occupations (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014 (

  • General and Operations Managers – $140,530
  • Sales Managers – $133,680
  • Marketing Managers – $129,190
  • PR and Fundraising Managers – $127,070
  • Financial Managers – $136,770
  • Compensation and Benefits Managers – $145,130
  • HR Managers – $131,490

Providence College

The Providence College School of Business is earning high marks for innovation in its Master of Business Administration (MBA) curriculum. Using a business-engagement learning model, you will use cross-disciplinary skills in experiential learning environments to put your classroom instruction to real world use. You can study full time or part time, taking one to four courses per semester. Areas of specialization include accounting, management (social entrepreneurship and leadership), marketing, finance, international business and non-profit organizations. Another innovation at this school is their 4+1 program: if you graduate with a bachelor’s degree in business from any accredited institution, you can earn your MBA in one year.

Salve Regina University

You can earn your MBA on campus or online at Salve Regina. This program is heavy on quantitative skills and has a decidedly global point of view. Your studies will immerse you in learning high-demand skills in the areas of accounting, finance and financial management, as well as in ethics, organizational behavior and strategic management. Classes are delivered through a blend of classroom instruction and hands-on internships. The school recently added a specialization in non-profit management designed for students looking to take on leadership roles in this fast-growing sector.

Brown University

The IE Brown Executive MBA is offered through a unique partnership between Brown University and IE University in Spain. Designed for senior managers operating in global leadership roles, this program requires 15 intense months of instruction in Madrid, Providence and Cape Town, as well as online. You will learn from faculty from both schools to give you a broad perspective, and will gain experience in three continents. After completing core courses, students have the opportunity to broaden their studies to understand the greater business environment through the “Beyond Business Curriculum” in areas such as psychology and engineering. Upon graduation, you will join an active alumni network that spans the globe.

Bryant University

The Bryant MBA can be pursued as a one-year, full-time experience or a two-year, part-time program. In both cases, you will pursue your degree as a member of a close-knit cohort and work as a team through many of the program’s challenges. The school uses a number of teaching methods drawn from best practices and the latest theories. Courses focus on conveying the technical, data-driven, quantitative skills needed to make decisions, as well as the interpersonal and communication skills that enable graduates to work with individuals of all skill levels in all cultures. Case studies, simulations and competitions provide experience with real-life situations. The program is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).

Johnson & Wales University

The MBA program at Johnson & Wales focuses on competing in the global marketplace. With this in mind, you can earn a general business management degree or specialize in information technology, accounting or hospitality. The curriculum is designed for the motivated student with several years of work experience and the discipline to take on a challenging program. It can be completed in 12 months of full-time study, although you can take fewer classes each semester to allow you to better balance work and classes.