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How Do I Become a School Business Manager?

D. Nelson
D. Nelson

A school business manager is a professional responsible for overseeing and optimizing all processes that help a school function, but are not directly related to education. For example, a school business manager might perform financial management functions, such as setting budgets and organizing fundraising initiatives. To become a school business manager, you should begin by earning an undergraduate degree in business. In many regions, it is possible to earn a graduate degree in school business management. An individual who would like to become a school business manager should plan on getting years of experience performing administrative duties in an academic context.

To become a school business manager, it is important that you learn about the ways in which schools are structured. This is why a graduate education that introduces you to academic administration is essential. Before enrolling in this kind of program, it is important to have some idea about the kind of school in which you would like to work. The organization of a high school or secondary school, for example, is different from the organization of a university. Most programs that offer school business manager degrees or certificates expect candidates to choose specific concentrations.

Woman with hand on her hip
Woman with hand on her hip

You should seek out internships while you are studying for your degree. Ideally, you should participate in an least one internship at the kind of school at which you would like to work. Many interns later find employment at the institutions where they trained, but even those who don't usually find that their internships were valuable experiences.

A school business manager is often responsible for overseeing a number of operations and departments, so you should plan on working your way up to this role. For an individual who would like to become a school business manager, it might be a good idea to begin working in a position where he or she can learn about a school's funding. Find out how a school's budget is determined and how decisions regarding expansion and the purchase of new equipment are made.

Many education professionals believe that the roles of school business managers are becoming more entwined with other roles and hierarchies within schools. Instead of concentrating solely on organizational, administrative, and funding matters, school business managers often join boards and organizations that enable them to contribute to discussions regarding the direction in which a school is moving. Volunteering to work in various academic organizations can enhance your resume or curriculum vitae, making you a more appealing job candidate.

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