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Entering an American Business School

Greetings, Habrahabr!

At the request of Habranarod, I publish an article on how to enroll in a business school. The topic is not to say that it is related to IT, but suddenly someone will come in handy. Once there is a demand, it means that someone is interested.
Any entrepreneur is constantly faced with the choice of investing. Many people say that investing in human capital, whether your employees or you are directly one of the most efficient in terms of returns. This article discusses a narrow range of investments in yourself - postgraduate education in the United States. More specifically, a master's degree in business administration (MBA).

Johnson Business School



Let's start with a common and commonplace - why do you need an MBA? Contrary to popular belief (here I throw a stone in the garden of almost all assistance agencies, “MBA courses” (!), And most universities), this scientific degree does not make you a professional, and, moreover, an outstanding leader. Ideally, people come to business schools already being professionals and having at least minimal management experience, and only study their areas of in-depth interest. Otherwise, the person simply does not realize the full potential of this scientific degree. Therefore, having met a 22-23-year-old MBA student, there is reason to think seriously. And that is why, according to statistics, the average age of MBA students in the United States is 27-30 years old. Why do I focus your attention on this? Because recently in the post-Soviet space the MBA is gaining immense popularity, all are coming. Yes, and begin to learn all and sundry.

It was a long introduction, but I wanted to convey to you two facts:
• You must earn an MBA consciously, possessing not only high-quality knowledge in your field, but also work experience, better as a manager. These are not empty words, if only because you will have to share your experience with fellow students during numerous case studies.
• Should be suspicious of those for whom the MBA is an end in itself, and not a necessary step on the way to the goal. Such people usually like to emphasize this degree.

I hope you find these tips useful.

Choosing a university and business school

So, we will assume that you actually “matured” for an MBA degree and decided to enroll. Before you will be the choice of the country - here I am risking to incur the people's anger, but still the recognized leaders in the MBA are American business schools.
So, let's say you decide - an American business school. You have a huge choice - leaders such as Wharton and Booth, top schools from the top thirty, and all the rest.

Link to the whole rating

Other rating, with very convenient classification capability.


Immediately, I’ll make a reservation that school leaders make extremely strict demands on candidates, especially in the field of practical experience. For example, Booth (University of Chicago) makes about 30 (!) Candidate requirements, such as: high GMAT test results (test of knowledge of English and mathematics), the presence of recognized scholarships, professional certificates, experience in social work (!), maintaining professional ties with previous universities, evidence of philanthropic activities, leadership experience.
Candidates need to have a high GPA and GMAT, TOEFL test scores. But almost all applicants satisfy these requirements; therefore, the above special requirements allow us to distinguish differences.
Why do I specify all these requirements? Because they are more or less the same in the top 30 schools, just the lower the rating, the less competition.

Admission process

I will describe the whole process using the example of the Johnson School of the Cornell University, hereinafter referred to as JBS .

So, JBS has the following requirements for candidates:
• Successful experience in previous education. This is a high average diploma grade (expressed as GPA, maximum 4.33), academic achievements (studies, olympiads, conferences, publications in recognized sources) and the so-called extracurricular activities (social projects, public activities within the university)
• Availability of studies that include quantitative analysis (for example, a thesis or other project).
• Work experience (mandatory) - attention is paid not so much to the term and position, but to your achievements. Note - all achievements try to result in numbers / percentage / share. "He was the leader of the project" - this is not even paid attention. But “achieved 50% customer growth, being the leader of a team of three people” kills two birds with one stone - it shows what you are capable of and that you are the leader.
• An essay is a very important document characterizing your personality (all previous information is contained in a resume or your application, this is a dry statistic, whereas in an essay you have to show yourself as a person). Typically, the essay does not duplicate the data specified in the application or summary. In general, the topic of the essay is worthy of a separate article.
• Recommendations - one of the most important elements. As a rule, the requirements are very strict - recommendations are sent by your recommendationist in a sealed envelope from your address. And very often, schools get in touch with referees to clarify data. Therefore it is better not to deceive (sending fake recommendations from other people's addresses).
• Your behavior at interviews with school representatives.

If you decide that you fully meet these requirements, it's time to learn directly about the admission process.
Let's start with important dates:
Period Application deadline Notice of decision
1 October 5, 2010 December 21, 2010
November 2, 2010 February 15, 2010
3 January 4, 2010 March 22, 2010
4 March 22, 2010 April 21, 2010

Online application

Before filling out the online application, you must have:
• Professionally prepared resume. More statistics and quantitative indicators.
• Originals and notarized translations of diplomas and certificates. (The translation must be made by an agency with international accreditation). Scan these documents.
• Finished essay (or several). For example, JBS requires three required essays and one optional.
• Recipients' information - positions, addresses, etc.
• From 50 to 200 dollars on the card. Almost all business schools require a registration fee (application fee).

The process of filling in the questionnaire takes about half an hour. They require standard information, part of which is duplicated in your resume and essay.
After clicking the “Submit” button, you officially apply and can no longer fix it. The tedious process of waiting for the next stage begins - an interview.


If you are pre-screened, you will be contacted and scheduled an interview. For foreigners, this is usually a telephone interview. The interview has the following objectives:
• Check your language level, communication, ability to express thoughts
• Check or clarify some information from an essay or summary
• Check for special knowledge (if you have said so in your resume or application)
• See how you will behave in an abnormal situation - for example, they may just start to be silent or ask to solve some case
• Check the seriousness of your intentions - for example, they may ask why you want to come here, and so on.
All the above topics will not necessarily be covered, but something will be accurate.
Sometimes a graduate of a school who is in your country for work or lives can also conduct interviews with foreigners. For example, if someone from Russia graduated from JBS and is there, they may well be asked to hold a one-on-one interview, and he will write a report on the results.

It's only the beginning

So, the interview is over and waiting again - now the final decision. You can be sure that before the specified date (at the top of the table) you will receive it. If it is positive, great, it’s just the beginning. You will have to decide whether to accept the offer or refuse, if you decide to accept the offer, you will need to make a deposit as confirmation (usually from $ 2,000), etc.

A small digression on financing. I know that immediately finding about $ 100,000 is quite problematic for most, so I can recommend trying your hand at various grants - ranging from the World Bank grant to the Muskie scholarship. Ideally, there are three main opportunities for third-party funding:
• Grants from special funds, organizations, states
• Grants within organizations (for example, some large corporations may fund employee training)
• Student loan
That's basically it. I hope this information will be useful to someone, and maybe even push someone to a responsible decision. All in your hands.
I sincerely wish you good luck!

PS The article did not manage to cover everything, so I am ready to answer any questions on this topic in the comments - starting with the nuances of admission and ending with the nuances of the learning process. Ask if interested.

Source: https://habr.com/ru/post/106810/

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