To be deductible, your expenses must be for education that (1) maintains or improves your job skills or (2) that your employer or a law requires to keep your salary, status, or job. However, even if the education meets either of these tests, the education cannot be part of a program that will qualify you for a new trade or business or that you need to meet the minimal educational requirements of your trade or business.Professional MBA programs, such as NC STate's evening and online MBA, have qualified for some time, especially for those who plan to stay with their current firm. The new ruling apparently opens the door for Executive MBA programs too. Also, the new ruling allows a deduction even for those who are unemployed part of the year.
I am not sure these changes will make a big difference for NC State MBAs, but all MBA students need to be aware of the opportunity to take a tax deduction for their schooling expenses, including tuition, books and transportation.