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I am a 36 year-old mid-career professional with a BA in Classics from a public university in Turkey and a total of 13 years of work experience. My current position is Director of Operations for an apparel company.
I am planning to get an MBA in NY and also thinking to get prepared for a PhD. I hope to change careers. I have no business school exp and never had the GMAT. I would like to do the MBA in one of the schools in New York City.
I am just wondering if I am getting myself into something that a little too late in life... Also financially... How do you manage until you finish the PhD program? Is the stipend enough to get by?
Here are some important questions to ask yourself:
When you say you to change career, are you thinking of going more into teaching or research?
Why do you want to do a MBA then a PhD? MBA is not a requirement for getting a PhD, and it will delay your PhD by another 2 years (since you are doing it in the US). By then you are in the late 30s. This will limit your choice of schools for your PhD. Not that it is impossible to get in (you can look thru other threads that discuss the age issue in PhD application), but some schools prefer someone who is a bit younger.
Financially, based on what I hear, the tuition waiver and stipends should be sufficient for you to get by. But if you are bring your wife and children, you will need to bring some of your own savings. How much you need will depend on where you will be studying and how many people you are bringing along.
These are very good questions....
Yes, I am considering to change careers to teach and/or research.
I was thinking of getting an MBA because it has been too long since college; and although I have always wanted to teach, I am not sure if I can handle being back to school for so long...
After looking at the other threads for the age, I think it is still worth the try, and I am now thinking maybe to apply for an MBA but depending on how the first semester goes, I could decide then whether to apply for a PhD program. Have you seen anyone who did this before?
I got the GMAT book today and I am terrified already
If you really want to take an interim Masters before your PhD, I would suggest you consider a MSc in your field of interest, instead of an MBA. A MSc is more research-oriented than an MBA, and hence is more relevant for your PhD application.
See what are some of the prerequisite for the PhD program - try to take these courses during your MSc. E.g. if you are in finance, it will be good to take graduate maths courses.
Then, try to collaborate with some professor on some research projects. Be their RAs or co-author papers with them if possible. This will help you in getting recommendations and beef up your research experience.
I guess it depends on what you wish to do. Career change to teaching will need a PhD. Career change to different industries will need an MBA.
So if career change for an experienced professional like you is really towards teaching, and you do not mind a hard grind and at least six more years (one and a half year before you get in anywhere since you will aim for fall 2007 entry - and then at least four years before a degree) then - AND ONLY THEN - you should think of a Phd.
Please do not think I am discouraging you. I am probably the same age as yourself . But I do wish to emphasize that at this age, this decision is a big one. There is no bravado involved here, just your own inner voice. I am enjoying my life in academia - so far. But I do know of many people who have left the PhD program - the dropout rates are close to 50% at many places, because they realize that PhD is not for them. Now that is one experiment we oldies cannot conduct
Hope the above is useful. Please post again if you wish, and I and others can discuss further.
On the other hand, an MBA is fine for a career change. One year MBA in Europe from IMD or INSEAD is great value, poses much less disruption and will surely boost the career. It is not cheap though !