MBA in The Netherlands | TopMBA.com

The Netherlands is an attractive destination for MBA study within Europe – coming in at 10th worldwide for its popularity among MBA applicants over the last two years.

Indeed, approximately one in eight applicants worldwide reported interest in taking an MBA in the Netherlands in 2014, with the highest level of interest (roughly one in five) shown by candidates in Eastern Europe.

The country has a rich economic history. For example, although trading in stocks can trace its roots back far earlier – to the now defunct Republic of Venice, for one – many believe that the first stock market comparable to those we find today was opened by the Dutch East India Company in early 17th century Amsterdam. This tradition continues in recent times – since the turn of this century, Amsterdam has been one of the homes of pan-European exchange Euronext, founded as the EU brought financial markets closer together.

Where can I study a full-time MBA in the Netherlands?

Amsterdam Business School

Four business schools in the Netherlands feature in the Global 200 Business Schools Report 2014/15, from a total of 65 European institutions. Inclusion in the report is predicated on the esteem in which they are held by a global pool of MBA recruiters as well as academics in the fields of business and management.

These four inclusions mean that the Netherlands matches Germany and Switzerland, and surpasses the options available in Italy and Denmark, at least for the time being.  

The top-four business schools in the Netherlands, as of 2014/15, are as follows:

1. Rotterdam School of Management (RSM), Erasmus University: The highest-ranking institution at which one can study an MBA in the Netherlands, Erasmus University’s RSM is ranked 20th in Europe in the Global 200 Business Schools Report 2014/15. Its full-time MBA emphasizes an international outlook. (Find out more about the admissions process to RSM in this interview Q&A).

2. Amsterdam Business School, Universiteit van Amsterdam: The University of Amsterdam’s business school offers two part-time MBA program specializations - available in the fields of healthcare management and big data, respectively - alongside its full-time MBA.  

3. Maastricht School of Management (MSM): As well as the full-time MBA the school offers from its base in the Netherlands, there are three overseas MBA options available, through partner institutions - in Peru, China and Vietnam – all of which are part-time programs spanning two years in length.   

4. Nyenrode Business Universiteit: Situated between Amsterdam and Utrecht, in the town of Breukelen, Nyenrode is the only private university at which one can study an MBA in the Netherlands. The school’s campus is dominated by a 13th century castle estate at which its full-time MBA program - redesigned in the summer of 2015 - is offered.

Nyenrode

Amsterdam Business School image (top): Shutterstock.com

 

While an MBA in the Netherlands from any of the institutions named in the previous tab will be designed, as any reputable MBA would be, to allow its students to gain access to new and exciting career opportunities on an international level, there will be many who wish to stay on and seek employment in the Netherlands. Indeed, by our latest count, just over half of MBA applicants base their choice of MBA study destination on where they wish to work thereafter. 

Amsterdam's Zeeburg district

RSM offers example of opportunities for those who study in the Netherlands

So, what options are to be found for those who have completed their program of study in the Netherlands? By way of example, the latest MBA employment report from Erasmus University’s RSM contains a list of the companies who hired the most MBA graduates from the school in 2014. These 10 employers include several whose headquarters can be found in the Netherlands such as the Dutch development bank, FMO (Netherlands Development Finance Company), the international brewing company, Heineken and tech firm, Philips. The list also includes those whose headquarters lie elsewhere in the world, such as Microsoft and Tata Consultancy Services.

However, for a more general look at the type of career opportunities available to professionals working in the Netherlands, some useful information that encompasses aspects of business culture and salary alongside practical information can be found with the Holland Alumni network. The country’s top industries, as identified by the site, include energy (the Netherlands is home to 30% of Europe’s natural gas reserves), high technology (an industry thought to be worth €23 billion in added value by 2009) and logistics (the Netherlands ranks second in the World Bank's 2014 Logistics Performance Index).

As for salaries, data from QS’s ROI report into the European MBA shows that the average salary uplift for those completing an MBA at either Erasmus University or Amsterdam Business School was 78%, with graduates picking up average earnings of roughly US$86,000. In addition, Erasmus University’s RSM was found to be one of 20 business schools in Europe to enjoy a 20-year ROI (return on investment) of over US$3 million – that figure being the estimated difference between the earnings of those with and without an MBA degree from the school (you can find out more about the ROI report’s methodology here).

Student visas

International students hoping to study in the Netherlands can enter their home country into a handy ‘visa wizard’ tool on the Study in Holland website to find out what their specific visa requirements entail.

Students at RSM

Where applicable (non-EU countries for the most part), the visa you will need for MBA-length study in the Netherlands is known as an entry visa (MVV) which covers your first 90 days in the country and must always be followed up with an application for a residence permit (VVR) that covers the remainder of your program’s duration. It is the business school or institution that makes this application, and they must apply for a permit on your behalf within five days of your arrival in the Netherlands. So, after securing a place on a program, make sure the school knows your travel plans well in advance of your arrival and that they have all the information they require from you to make this application.

Financing an MBA in the Netherlands

None of the aforementioned examples of MBAs in the Netherlands are priced at above US$50,000 at the time of writing. Here are some details of tuition fees (don’t forget to account for accommodation and living expenses on top of this!) at QS’s current top four business schools in the Netherlands:

Rotterdam School of Management (for January 2016 intake): €44,500 (c.US$49,000)

Amsterdam Business School (for September 2016 intake): €31,000 (c.US$34,000)

Maastricht School of Management (for September 2015 intake): €28,500 (c.US$31,000)

Nyenrode Business Universiteit (as advertised in July 2015): €32,500 (c.US$36,000)

Each business school will make their own provisions of financial aid – each of which will be designed to attract talented students to join their MBA program. Your first port of call should therefore be the school’s official website where you can see if you are eligible for any of the MBA scholarships on offer.

In addition to school scholarships, other forms of financial support may be available for those looking to study in the Netherlands. For example, further scholarships that might be applicable to your individual circumstances can be found by using Study in Holland’s Grantfinder.

Fast Facts

  • Region: Europe
  • Capital: Amsterdam
  • Currency: Euro (EUR), €