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Applying to schools only in Japan - Need some advice

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Applying to schools only in Japan - Need some advice [#permalink] New post 02 Mar 2014, 21:02
Hello,

I am in the process of preparing for my GMAT scheduled for May 11, but I have had an idea of the school that I want to go since last year when I decided to go the MBA route. I work and live in Japan and would like to work for a company that is either in Japan or works with Japan (if I were to return home to the states). At this point I'm looking for programs that are international or global MBA programs with a focus on Japanese and East Asian business culture. This is pretty much why I want to study in Japan as it would make more sense to study among the culture I want to work for in the future.

What I need some advice on is how many schools to apply to, what are the best rounds (are there really advantages to applying in different rounds other than available scholarship money? I was reading some people's strategies and got confused about round 1 applications and 2 etc.) Should I take a look at any schools in the US? Are the disadvantages to having an MBA from an international school if I want to work for a company in the US or is an MBA pretty much transferrable across the board?

So far the schools I am looking at are Doshisha University (Kyoto) International University of Japan (Niigata) and Hitotsubashi (Tokyo). I am debating applying to 1 or 2 more more because the application fees are crazy. (What is the average application fee of a US school? From what I have seen, Japanese application fees run from roughly $150-$350) Doshisha is my first choice, followed with IUJ, and Hitotsubashi is my reach school.

Are there consequences if you defer for a year? The reason I ask is my contract for my current job ends in August, but I have to decide whether or not to re-contract by early February. The dates for acceptance are around early-mid February and later. If I apply to Bschool and don't get in then I am also without a job. If I apply and get in I would have to defer for a year because even though I could break contract, it would leave a pretty bad impression on my current employers and I really don't want to do that. Or I take the chance and apply, not re-contract, and get in which would be the most ideal situation. Either way these are the three scenarios I am facing.

Thanks for any and all advice about applying. Going to start getting into the application process in the summer and after the dreaded GMAT is over and done with.
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Re: Applying to schools only in Japan - Need some advice [#permalink] New post 05 Mar 2014, 14:57
Hi there,

At Fortuna Admissions, we are familiar with IUJ, Keio and McGill Japan (none of which you mentioned) but unfortunately we don't know too much about the Japanese MBA programs you mentioned, to be honest.

However I have a suggestion for you to contact Vince Ricci, an MBA admissions consultant based in Japan. Though he works primarily with candidates applying to US schools he might have some local knowledge. You can reach him at Vince@VincePrep.com.

If you wanted to attend one of the top 10 b-schools, you could consider INSEAD or LBS - particularly INSEAD as you could spend your entire year on their Singapore campus where a lot of East Asian recruiters end up. But as you said, it might make more sense to study among the culture you want to work for in the future (though not sure if you are looking for all the courses to be in English or in Japanese or both).

Generally people apply to 3-5 schools as you obviously don't want to put all your eggs in one basket. Plus as you said, the application fees can add up and can range ($150-500 ish). Generally round 1 is the best (but this is normally the case for US schools - INSEAD and LBS still have many slots in the final rounds - the only thing affected is that you won't have as many options for scholarships if you wait until round 3). For more information read a post of ours on ideal timing re: round 1 and 2 http://fortunaadmissions.com/fortunas-m ... nd-1-vs-2/ OR more about round 3 http://fortunaadmissions.com/what-are-m ... n-round-3/

An MBA is very much transferable across the globe however you have to think about where recruiters will go and where strong alumni networks are based. If you are interested in only working in the US, it might make more sense to end up at a US school. If you know you want to end up in Japan, your chances of getting a job in Japan post your MBA, are probably higher as most of the recruiters will be Japanese based. Or at INSEAD or LBS, as they are more of an international school there are a lot more international opportunities.

Some schools allow you to defer no-problem but others aren't as flexible and you have to have a pretty darn good reason of why you are asking to defer. So you'll have to look into your specific schools to get more info on this - just to be on the safe side.

Hopefully this all helps.

If you want to chat further, give us a shout.
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Re: Applying to schools only in Japan - Need some advice [#permalink] New post 05 Mar 2014, 16:34
Hi. Thank you for the very detailed response!

FortunaAdmissionsMJ wrote:
At Fortuna Admissions, we are familiar with IUJ, Keio and McGill Japan (none of which you mentioned) but unfortunately we don't know too much about the Japanese MBA programs you mentioned, to be honest.


I am actually looking at IUJ (International Univeristy of Japan) and it is my second choice. Keio I am still researching and I haven't looked at McGill yet although I have heard of it.

Quote:
However I have a suggestion for you to contact Vince Ricci, an MBA admissions consultant based in Japan. Though he works primarily with candidates applying to US schools he might have some local knowledge. You can reach him at Vince@VincePrep.com.
I will definitely send him an email and see what he says about the various programs. Thank you for the suggestion!

Quote:
(though not sure if you are looking for all the courses to be in English or in Japanese or both).
At this point I am looking just at courses offered in English. From what I have read usually a student has to be at the N1 level, maybe N2, of the Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) to be allowed into one of the Japanese language classes. I know that I would struggle at the level I am at now, though I would love the challenge if I can get my language skill up to level required by the time I am ready to enter school. Unfortunately my Japanese study has been put on the back burner while I put all of my focus into GMAT.

Thank you again for your response. I will definitely take a looking into the suggestions you mentioned and read more about LSB and INSEAD to see if they fit what I am looking for in a school.
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Re: Applying to schools only in Japan - Need some advice [#permalink] New post 07 Mar 2014, 06:33
You're very welcome! Good luck!
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Re: Applying to schools only in Japan - Need some advice   [#permalink] 07 Mar 2014, 06:33
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