Six Tips for Drafting A List of YOUR Top 10 B-Schools
School ranking means a great deal to many students, institutions, and employers. A plethora of school rankings can be found online, from “Top Global MBA’s” to “Top MBA’s in Sustainability.” However, those rankings are not always put together with the student in mind. It is critical, therefore, that each student compiles his/her own top 10 list of schools that are right for them.
Below are our six tips on how to compile your best list.
Curriculum, Curriculum, Curriculum
The curriculum is the most critical aspect of any program. How is the curriculum structured? How many electives are available? What is the university’s approach to the field? Who is the university catering to? The answers must be in the student’s favor before proceeding any further in the research process. After each answer, good follow-up questions would be, “Is this right for me?” and “Is this what I need to meet my goals?”
Every university has its unique reputation and culture. Some universities attract a more relaxed student body, while others are exceedingly rigorous. The student must always ask, “What is right for me?”
The goal of every student is to leverage their background to enhance their career and make a living. A university’s job is, not only to provide the required training but also to create opportunities for students to be employed post-graduation. Therefore, review the networking opportunities the university offers, and look at the list of employers that hire the university’s students. Are there any patterns? If so, are they aligned with the student’s goals?
Groups and Associations
Another important aspect of graduate schools is the opportunities to be involved in the institution’s community, so that (i) the student expands his/her networking reach, and (ii) is around industry peers. Review the clubs and associations. The findings should lead to the questions, “Would I be interested in participating in any of these organizations?” and “Will these get me closer to my goals?”
While at the beginning stages, cost may not be a factor, you should consider the correlation between the cost of the degree and type of career you are aspiring to have. The question here is, “Will I be able to pay back my student loans with the type of job my degree can leverage?”
Some universities have larger endowments that offer scholarship opportunities to most of its students, while others have limited scholarship offerings. Review the types of scholarship, and the number of students receiving them.
Once the student has compiled a preliminary list, he/she should reach out to the university and schedule an information session (whether remote or in-person). The prospective student should also reach out to professors, current students, and alumni. The more people he/she connects with, the better the chances are in making the best decision and attend the right university.
Finally, rank each school based on how it meets your needs.
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About Sia Admissions:
Sia Admissions Consulting is a boutique firm based in New York City. We specialize in coaching students of diverse background navigate university admissions process. Our goal is to partner with students to help them characterize and reflect their individuality in all areas of the admissions application.
At Sia, we firmly believe that “one-size” does not fit all—each student has his or her story that, if communicated properly, a university admissions committee is eager to hear; therefore, we coach each student in originally telling his or her story. Our partnership with each student consists of – (i) recognizing the student’s story by asking poignant questions which help us (ii) identify the quintessence of his or her strengths and aspirations, so we may (iii) build an idiosyncratic strategy that helps the student distinctively present his or her story. Our aim is to coach student in showcasing a unique application that communicates their individuality as an ideal candidate for the field and institution of choice.