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Deferring - Good Idea for Non-Traditional Applicant?

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Intern
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Joined: 25 Jan 2012
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Location: United States
Concentration: Finance
Schools: Rice University (Jones) - Class of 2014
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Deferring - Good Idea for Non-Traditional Applicant? [#permalink] New post 04 Apr 2012, 20:42
I understand most people defer for family emergency and economic hardship, neither of those apply, but I find myself debating deferring. I have acceptance at top-30 school with a generous scholarship. My choice to defer is not based on trying to reapply to get into a better school (though who knows). It's more for personal-career development. I want to enter b-school confident about what I want to do, instead of hoping I know what I want to do.

With a Humanities degree and three years teaching (2 inner city, 1 in Asia), I have no background in my post-MBA target fields. Even though adcoms might like my profile, I'm not so sure about hiring managers, and since I'm still debating between different fields (a management rotational program in Big Oil, management consulting, banking), I feel like experience in one or several of these fields would give me more clarity than classroom simulations or informational interviews alone.

For several factors, the possibility of doing a pre-MBA internship this summer (2012) is highly unlikely. Recruiting for summer 2013 internship starts so early in the Fall I will not have had much time to test out what I want to do, so by the time I've finished my internship, I worry that doors will have already begun closing on many fields.


Other Factors:

Reasons to Defer
- Work and do internships to gain experience/clarity
- even with an extra year I'd still be at or younger than the average age (26, instead of 25)
- would finish my contract with my current employer (instead of breaking a few months early and forfit part of my pension)

Reasons Not to Defer
- Would NEED to find job next year (since staying in current position doesn't add value to my WE), might have unemployment for 1-3 months since I'm living abroad now and its difficult to secure employment in my target city in the US
- Scholarship not guaranteed next year, though still probable
- Young age will be a benefit in some hiring managers' eyes.


On a personal note,
As a woman, I feel like planning for marriage/babies was my biggest reason for doing an MBA NOW, instead of waiting till I had more experience. I don't want my gender to be the biggest factor in my decision. Also, I feel like I rushed my undergrad degree and was pigeon-holed quickly. Trying to avoid doing the same thing with my MBA.
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Re: Deferring - Good Idea for Non-Traditional Applicant? [#permalink] New post 05 Apr 2012, 08:54
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As someone who successfully deferred last year, maybe I can shed some light on this and give you my opinion.

A few things first:

If you defer, the school will most likely make you sign a deferral agreement stating that you can not apply to any other school and you will give them the right to check with other schools about your status.

The school will also most likely ask for your deposit + more money to help ensure that you actually do enroll the following year.

If you defer, you will more than likely lose your scholarship. The school will tell you that you that you will be considered again for $$$ next year, but with the above two already happening, what interest do they have in giving you $$$, they know your already going to enroll.

Just some thoughts.
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Re: Deferring - Good Idea for Non-Traditional Applicant? [#permalink] New post 05 Apr 2012, 09:26
Career changers are not uncommon in b-school. I would suggest reaching out to current students or alumni from the school offering you a scholarship with similar background and/or goals to shed some light on what worked and what did not.

I would also consult the school's career services to get their take on what is to expect in terms of internships and ultimately a job coming out of school. They may tell you that anything is possible as long as you start networking and targetting companies early (maybe even starting now).

I'm not sure one year of entry level industry experience will realistically make that much of a difference in the eyes of future employers if you plan on going to business school the following year regardless. It might help you determine what you want to pursue after though, so there may be some value in that regard.
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Re: Deferring - Good Idea for Non-Traditional Applicant? [#permalink] New post 05 Apr 2012, 12:58
thk wrote:
As someone who successfully deferred last year, maybe I can shed some light on this and give you my opinion.

A few things first:

If you defer, the school will most likely make you sign a deferral agreement stating that you can not apply to any other school and you will give them the right to check with other schools about your status.

The school will also most likely ask for your deposit + more money to help ensure that you actually do enroll the following year.

If you defer, you will more than likely lose your scholarship. The school will tell you that you that you will be considered again for $$$ next year, but with the above two already happening, what interest do they have in giving you $$$, they know your already going to enroll.

Just some thoughts.


These are very good points. :)
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Re: Deferring - Good Idea for Non-Traditional Applicant?   [#permalink] 05 Apr 2012, 12:58
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