Entrepreneurs

Billionaire businessman Mark Cuban: ‘I am not a fan of getting MBAs at all’

Businessman Mark Cuban listens as he is introduced at the South by Southwest (SXSW) Music Film Interactive Festival 2017 in Austin, Texas, March 12, 2017.
Brian Snyder | Reuters
Businessman Mark Cuban listens as he is introduced at the South by Southwest (SXSW) Music Film Interactive Festival 2017 in Austin, Texas, March 12, 2017.

Mark Cuban is the ultimate business success story. He grew up middle class in Pittsburgh and after college started with just $60 in his pocket. Today is worth $3.7 billion, according to Forbes.

And the tech entrepreneur, star of the ABC reality show "Shark Tank" and owner of the Dallas Mavericks says one step many people take in their journey towards success is unnecessary: getting an MBA.

"I am not a fan of getting MBAs at all. I am a fan of going to college but not a fan of getting an MBA," Cuban said at the High School Leadership Summit Turning Point USA event in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday (a video of which is embedded below).

Cuban went to Indiana University for undergrad and took MBA classes there, he tells CNBC Make It. "I had more than half of my MBA done before my junior year [of college]," Cuban says, but he did not complete an MBA.

There are less expensive alternatives, Cuban told Charlie Kirk, the 24-year-old founder of Turning Point USA, a right-wing non-profit organization aimed at promoting conservative political ideas among high school students, on Tuesday. (Cuban does not identify as Republican or Democrat: "I don't belong to any political party and I never will," Cuban told Kirk.)

Plus, actual work experience is more valuable, he said.

"There are so many online ways to learn and I think you can get far more experience in the workforce and learn more and be in a better position to succeed. Because realize, look, there are so many online MBA equivalents that if you are disciplined enough, you can do it for a lot less money and still get a quality education," says Cuban. "Now, that said, I am a big believer in going to college, right, I am just not a big fan of MBAs."

It's not the first time Cuban has disparaged the idea of getting an MBA.

For example, in an Reddit question and answer session he hosted in 2012, Cuban said, "I think an MBA is an absolute waste of money. If you have a hole in your knowledge base, there are a ton of online courses you can take. I don't give any advantage to someone in hiring because they have an MBA."

And indeed, as Cuban says, there are free online courses available in any number of business topics. Here is a list of 10, including courses like Effective Business Writing taught by Margaret Steen, a writing instructor at University of California Berkeley, and Entrepreneurship in Emerging Economies, taught by Tarun Khanna, professor of business administration and South Asian studies at Harvard University.

At the High School Leadership Summit, Cuban also made some particularly frightening comments about artificial intelligence.

Disclosure: CNBC owns the exclusive off-network cable rights to "Shark Tank."

See also: