Top Aerospace and Defense Employers

Top Aerospace and Defense Employers
Employing approximately 180,000 civil servants, NASA maintains 20 facilities and centers throughout the U.S. focused on varied operations. Image from Pixabay
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Katy McWhirter June 27, 2022

An Aerospace & Defense MBA positions you for top leadership and management positions with major governmental and corporate employers, including the DoD, NASA, Lockheed Martin, and Boeing.

MBA/Business Programs You Should Consider

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Text change!!!!!!! Before earning an
Aerospace & Defense MBA, prospective students want a clear sense of where they may work after graduating. True, some learners are already employed in the industry; they pursue this degree primarily to
upgrade their credentials. Others, however, use the MBA as a launching pad for a new career. They should be pleased to know that global aerospace and defense companies abound, as do government agencies and other entities looking to hire these professionals.

What is an Aerospace and Defense MBA?

Only two
Aerospace & Defense MBA programs currently exist in America: both the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and the University of Oklahoma offer
hybrid learning paths that students complete in just one year of study. These innovative programs combine advanced business acumen with knowledge of aerospace and defense to produce graduates with the skills and knowledge needed to move the industry forward.

In addition to coursework, students engage in experiential learning through organizational action projects and study abroad opportunities. During residency periods, they can also interact with fellow students, professors, and industry leaders.

Who gets an Aerospace and Defense MBA?

Designed for experienced professionals seeking advanced business skills to address complex issues within the industry, an Aerospace and Defense MBA program best suits those aiming for leadership and management positions. These programs, which take only one year to complete, provide the training top companies seek. Alumni of
The University of Tennessee-Knoxville’s Aerospace & Defense MBA hold jobs with NASA, Raytheon Technologies, Lockheed Martin, Delta, and Garmin, among others.


“Should I Get A MBA?”

University and Program Name Learn More

Top aerospace and defense employers

Graduates of Aerospace & Defense MBA programs work for a variety of employer types, including private corporations, government agencies, consulting firms, think tanks, and universities. Below, we look at several of the largest employers for these professionals.

Lockheed Martin

Located in Bethesda, Maryland with easy access to Washington D.C.,
Lockheed Martin employs nearly 115,000 professionals across the globe to research, develop, and manufacture varied technology services and systems – including those devoted to aerospace and defense. The Lockheed Martin corporation employs nearly one-third of its staff in aeronautics, including in the innovative Skunk Works program. In addition to hiring engineering and technology professionals, the
aeronautics division also looks for qualified MBA graduates with skills in production operations, sustainment operations, supply chain management, finance and business operations, and quality and mission success.


In business for more than a century, the
Boeing Company is known as a pioneer in aeronautics and aerospace products. The corporation maintains divisions in both defense and aerospace, creating multiple opportunities for graduates of MBA in aerospace & defense programs. Individuals considering a role at Boeing can choose from
career opportunities in business operations, finance, human resources, and supply chain management. The company also places great emphasis on developing emerging technologies based on data insights, so those who focus their skills in data analytics are sure to be in demand.


Airbus maintains a global presence, employing more than 130,000 professionals focused on the design and manufacturing of products and services in the aerospace arena. In addition to creating commercial airliners, Airbus also functions as the prime contractor within the Future Combat Air System of Europe to develop satellites, fighter jets, drones, and other
defense systems. Airbus maintains offices throughout Europe and North America, providing opportunities for Aerospace & Defense MBA in graduates in areas of operations management, tax management, sales management, corporate governance, quality control, finance, human resources, and marketing, sales, and commercial contracts.

U.S. Department of Defense

Operating as the largest governmental agency in the U.S., the
Department of Defense (DOD) employs 1.3 million active duty service members, 750,000 civilian employees, and more than 800,000 reserve service members. In addition to administering branches of the military such as the Air Force, the DOD also manages Space Force. The newest branch under the DOD, Space Force employees civilians in aerospace & defense positions. Typical
job openings include budget analyst, management analyst, contract price and cost analyst, acquisition program manager, and telecommunications specialist. Civilians and active members of the military can find roles both domestically and abroad.

Raytheon Technologies

Raytheon Technologies maintains a 100+ year presence in the world of aerospace, defense, and space technologies, making it a leader in the field. The Raytheon company employs a global workforce focused on providing research, development, and breakthrough technologies to support clients and users alike. The Raytheon Technologies corporation provides a variety of
cross-functional corporate positions in need of qualified MBA in aerospace & defense graduates. These roles can vary by location, but common areas include research and development project management, quality control and data analysis, security administration, business process management, application integration, and digital strategic management.

Northrop Grumman

With an employee base numbering more than 90,000 professionals,
Northrop Grumman offers multiple opportunities for students who decide to complete an Aerospace & Defense MBA. The Northrop Grumman corporation designs and provides varied products and services, including those focused on air, space, cybersecurity, advanced weaponry, and defense. Interested individuals can choose from domestic and international locales alike; the company currently maintains outposts in nine states. Areas of employment for aerospace & defense graduates include business development and management, communications, facilities and real estate, global supply chain, human resources, manufacturing and production management, and program management.


Most people think about space exploration when they think of the
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), but this government entity engages in much, much more. Employing approximately 180,000 civil servants, the agency maintains 20 facilities and centers throughout the U.S. focused on varied operations. Some of the
roles currently open at NASA that may interest Aerospace & Defense MBA graduates include assistant administrator for the Office of Procurement, management analyst, program specialist, business development specialist, and supervisory management analyst. Each of these positions offers six-figure salaries to start.

General Dynamics

Billed as a global aerospace and defense company, the
General Dynamics corporation has been in existence for more than six decades. The organization is divided into four business segments: aerospace, compact systems, marine systems, and technologies. Within each sector, technical and business professionals are required to deliver innovative new systems and processes. Whether working on supply chain management for jet aviation projects or managing the finances of a new ordnance and tactical system deployment, Aerospace & Defense MBA graduates can choose from
meaningful roles based on interests and talents.

PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC)

As one of the largest consulting firms in the world and one of the largest defense contractors,
PwC hires a range of professionals for its aerospace and defense services. In addition to compiling the
Global Aerospace and Defense: Annual Industry Performance and Outlook study, PwC also assembles an
annual industry performance and outlook report on global aerospace and defense. MBA graduates who want to work at PwC in the A&D services department can take up important roles helping aerospace companies, defense companies, and government agencies alike develop strategies, address inflation and supply chain issues, create sustainability protocols, and establish competitive advantage.

BAE Systems

BAE Systems focuses on providing technologies and systems that help protect national security, critical infrastructure, and vital information. With an employee base of nearly 90,000 operating in more than 40 countries, BAE offers the type of global services needed to provide essential defense systems. The company consists of sectors in future technologies, air, land, cyber security and intelligence, electronics, services, and sea. Each sector requires business professionals to keep projects moving seamlessly from design to deployment. Job categories of interest to MBA graduates include business development, strategy, and planning, finance and accounting, project and program management, and supply chain and logistics.

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Tom Meltzer spent over 20 years writing and teaching for The Princeton Review, where he was lead author of the company's popular guide to colleges, before joining Noodle.

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