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Crazy Choice...please advice!

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Crazy Choice...please advice! [#permalink] New post 29 Mar 2007, 09:06
Ok, its getting crazy now

I posted this question on b-school applications forum...but also need some advice from you ....specially that your book helped me a lot (I even read it while taking baths:)
I never thought I would be writing this email. I got:

- Full Ride from Darden Virginia

- 50% (maybe even 75%, will know soon) from Ross Michigan

- In at Chicago (no $, but will ask for some)

My plans:

I am young (24), just graduated in May last year, but have plenty (2 years) of full time work exp while in college

I want to persue two things: consulting and enterprenuership

Right after B-School I want to do consulting (preferably M/B/B in Europe or some less known companies in the States) for 2-3 years.

After that I want to join my family company and take it from being a central european company to a fully pan european one (its a niche industry)...so i will transition to CEO/Managing Director after few years

My problem:

- I want to learn general management, marketing, enterprenuership, finance skills...preatty much all you need to run a company....all schools are excellent for that

Chicago is a top school i got into, on pair with H/S/W/k...

but, there are few things I have to consider:

a) i am coming back to Poland after the mba + 2 years in consulting and i will be working with my father for a small/mid size business, you could say "entrepreneurial" ventures

in this case, in poland, brand of MBA beyond Harvard does not matter that much cause people dont know the difference

of course when i will meet and try to do business with high-up guys at major corporations (CEO, CFO, etc) then maybe if they come from the consulting background they willl know that chicago is ultra elite, but michigan is almost as good (just not as much tradition).

Important question:

Will I be able to get into MCK/BAIN/BCG consulting from all of them given my background, in US or in Europe (I think i have an excellent shot at their offices in poland, my home country, but want to stay in the us or western europe instead) ...Chicago is a core school for all of those companies (together with a hand full of others, HBS, stanford, mit, wharton, kellog, columbia) while michigan and darden are schools were they recruit quite heavily, but are not core schools...again it will probably not matter if i put warsaw as my desire location


other info

b) i like michigan and virginia 2-3 times more than chicago...i like the atmosphere of university town (just like charlottessville) not the atmosphere of grad school...dont get me wrong (Rhyme, j/k...its a great school...but i like college towns

c) michigan and darden really want me, i got the Distinguished scholar award, 1/2 tuition at Ross, and Full ride from Batten Enterprenuership center at Darden...very selective awards

d) michigan is a great place to learn about everything and anything...more structure program (electives=2nd year)

virginia is based on case studies (which i like, not sure if i will like doing them all the time, but that is another story)

chicago has only 1 required course! this could be good...but also not so good since I am not sure what the heck I want to learn (you know basic idea: operations, finance, intern. business, consulting, marketing...pretty much general education you need for both consulting and running a business)

Chicago gives me options and prestigues, great analytical abilities, great network

Ross and Darden atmosphere of small tight community (again personal preference), great gm programs, and $$$

e) all have great exchange programs in Europe and Asia, and I will definitely go to both (europe LBS or Insead, to acquire some relations with marketing people who will be high-up in few years in large corporations in europe, i want axpol to start selling directly to large corps in europe, Asia for experience and sourcing opportunities)...but Chicago has even a campus in London and in Asia!


So in light of my plans...what should i do???
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 [#permalink] New post 31 Mar 2007, 17:24
Expert's post
First of all, congratulations! Secondly, kudos to you for researchinf your decision so well. You seem to have a good understdanding of the pros and cons of each school.

Having said that, I encourage you to not overthink it too much. Odd advice for such a big decision, I know! But it sounds like you're much less passionate about Chicago than you are about M and D, and you are only really considering C because it's ranked higher than those other two. That's crazy.

Like you said, in Poland none of them probably has a much better reputation than the others. Also -- and this is something that many new MBAs lose sight of -- what you do and what you accomplish in your first 5 years or so out of business school will matter MUCH more than the name on your diploma. The school you attend will help you get interviews with the big consulting firms (like you said), but after that, it's up to you to perform. And I think you can get in the door at any of those firms from C, M, or D, so it's not critical that you choose based on prestige.

I can't tell you which school to pick, but I can encourage you to go with your gut. Let me know what you decide!

Scott
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Scott

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