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Is Business School Right For You?

Nealeigh Mitchell l ManagerLink

Step 4: Pick The Right School


Choosing the right school and program is almost as difficult as getting in! Unless you’re working under some specific parameters (like you need to stay close to home or your wallet is light), you should cast your net wide. I know it’s difficult to start your search without preconceived notions regarding a school’s muscle (ranking anyone?) but keep an open mind.

There is no magic formula that guarantees acceptance. First identify the schools you have a chance of getting in to and then stack them against each other based on these and other variables:

  • What field do you want to go into?
  • How important is class size?
  • What is your availability? Do you plan to attend full time or part time?
  • Are you looking for a single or dual degree?
  • Is diversity a factor?
  • Are your grades up to snuff?
  • Why Rankings Are Often Rank

    School rankings are one of the first places applicants turn to in deciding whether or where to apply. Sure these lists can be a helpful in getting a broad picture of a school’s strengths and weaknesses, but don’t be swayed by the numbers alone. Business Week and U.S News and World Report’s yearly roundups are notoriously overused and tend to be controversial. And a low-ranking school may be better suited to your career interests. That being said, prestige and name recognition go a long way. Graduates of top-ranked b-schools often have a lot rosier job prospects. However, they also spend a load more for that perk.

    Other criteria you should consider include curriculum concentrations, career path of graduates, what you expect to be paid after graduation, and financial aid opportunities.

    That’s a full plate. But no fear. There are an abundance of resources at your disposal to help pare it down.

  • Visit business school website – get a feel for the curriculum and staff as well as what specializations they have to offer.
  • Speak with current students and alumni – what former students do after school is a good indicator of the program’s fitness.
  • Attend business school forums – great networking opportunity and a chance to hob nob with peers
  • Visit the school – first-person perspectives can’t be beat.
  • Step 5: Determine Your Specialization >>