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# How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder

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How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder [#permalink]  04 Apr 2011, 19:53
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I’m having a dilemma, and though I know these types of comparisons are discussed a lot, I have very specific concerns that I’d really appreciate input on.

I either have an admit, or have a good shot one, with Rotman (UofToronto), Schulich (York), and Sauder (UBC) in Toronto and Vancouver. I got a scholarship to Rotman so the cost difference is negligible.

In terms of the individual school I think Rotman and Schulich are the best, and of those two, I generally prefer Rotman as I think it’s a slightly stronger program – yet I have a few issues which I think may mean I should really choose one of the others, and am wondering if anyone can provide insight and advice – either on the schools themselves, or just general career paths.

I’m interested in Strategy mainly, but also think I’d be interested in general management, operations, business development, csr, trade. At the same time, I am really focused on work-life balance, I’m not lazy, but I’m not shooting for big money and big hours, I’d rather have a balanced income with a balanced and flexible schedule. This sort of rules out big name consulting for me… as far as their reputation goes. I’m also not interested in finance (rotmans strength), or marketing (schulichs strength).

Reputation of School

As I mentioned, I think Rotman is the best school of the group, with Schulich a close second, and Sauder farther down. I think Rotman’s research, and some of their original programs (integrative thinking/business design – still not sold on these) are an advantage, and it seems like a rigorous and engaging program with strong recognition. Nevertheless, I’ve heard that it’s very focused on finance and quantitative work, and has an unsociable and cut-throat attitude.

Schulich ranks almost as good as Rotman very consistently, but for some reason has a pretty bad rep it sounds like. I can’t tell if it’s overrated on the rankings because of its diversity or for some other reason, or if it has an unfairly bad reputation because of YorkU as a whole, and maybe their grads don’t take/get the highest paying positions. Is it reasonable to assume you will truly get a worse education at Schulich than Rotman?

Rotman wins

As for fit, I like many aspects of Rotman, but their placement doesn’t seem to fit me at all. 50% of all their grads end up in Finance, with another 20% in consulting. This leaves a total of less than 30% doing anything I would likely be interested in doing. I think this implies there’s less industry recruiting on campus, and also that their will be way worse networking opportunities, internships, learning about different kinds of industries and functions, etc.

On the other hand, Schulich’s placement is actually pretty diverse. They do alright in Finance, okay in consulting, and have a lot of grads in industry and different sectors. This seems like a program that’s a lot more conducive to just learning about management and exploring your options. Also, one where you can meeting people, and build networks in a variety of areas. In particular I like the option of multiple majors and their focus on public and non-profit management. Yet despite this, there aren’t too many grads working in these areas. Are there no jobs, or are they just usually passed over because of lower salary? Is there even recruiting for non-finance/consulting positions, or is that usually something you have to search out?

Schulich wins (maybe)

Importance of Location

Along with this, I’d very much like to consider moving to Vancouver – it’s not for sure, but something I’d like to have the option to do (at least 50-50 change I’ll end up going to Van). I know Sauder may be as good as the other schools for Vancouver jobs, but I would imagine that a degree from one of the top 2/3 schools in the country should be seen as just as strong as the local school (do Canadians even care?). How important is location? Certainly I’ll loose on some connections for the sake of a slightly better school, but is it for-sure a mistake to go to a Toronto school if I’m going to move west? For Rotman’s placement, I can’t believe it, but only 2% of grads work in Canada outside of Toronto! That makes me think I may be screwed leaving the ‘typical’ markets for the school. Including Vancouver, I’d like to have the opportunity to work internationally if possible, which makes me lean towards Schulich for the network. Again Rotman grads seem to be Toronto, New York, Chicago for finance/consulting, or bust….

Sauder wins

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

For anyone who has particular experience with any of these schools, could you provide any feedback?

Rotman

- If you’re not taking a finance specializations, did you find the rest of the course-work finance and quantitatively heavy (I have an econ degree so think I could handle it, but its still not my strong suit, and not my interest)
- Is there much in the way of recruiting, or networking opportunities outside of finance and consulting?
- What is the social atmosphere of the school? Is it cut-throat/arrogant in a manner people say?
- How did you find the career services and school administration?

Schulich
- How did you find the quality of the education, faculty and classmates? Any concerns about quality and students?
- How is the school socially? Since it’s such a bad location I’d imagine most people would commute, and that could take away from the experience.
- How did you find the career services and school administration?
- Does anyone have information on the regional allocation of Schulich grads (domestically and intn’l), I can’t find anything?

Sauder
- In the job market do you see many grads from out east?
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Re: How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder [#permalink]  10 Apr 2011, 06:12
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what makes you say that the workloads and culture are so different between the programs? Have you had the opportunity to talk to people in these programs?
Schulich is very team based which just creates a larger workload. Even though people say it's manageable on here, most of the uses are not current students and don't understand what it's like when 4 MBA students actually get together. It takes A LOT of time. Rotman is less team oriented, but they go right until the end of the semester full-on. We're just going into our exam week today while Rotman has to go right up until the end of April because of the way their semester is structured. The actual workload is somewhat comparable as far as hours go, but it is a preference of whether you like group work or whether you LOVE group work.

Though Schulich may be more social, did you find that commuting made it difficult to participate fully (can't enjoy pub-night fully :p)??
Most people going to Schulich don't live on campus and our weekly bar nights are always downtown. If anything, people who live on campus have less social life because they always have to commute to get to anything fun our class does.

In terms of the opportunity to work overseas (possibly Europe), do you think Schulich has an advantage? I know both schools likely aren't well known, but with Schulichs 'international focus' I would imagine there's more people moving abroad, and might help with contacts, even though the IMBA class is segregated. Then again, UofT as a university is pretty widely respected. I can't seem to find alumni stats on Schulich, though I can for Rotman (one critique about Schulich is they seem to offer less info about their program).
Schulich definitely has a lot of means to get overseas. They have exchange programs with about 70 schools and they have an IMBA program for students who really want that opportunity to only work overseas. UofT has a better brand that York for sure, which is probably a concern because no one outside of the b-school realm gives a hoot which actual MBA program you went to, it is the university's reputation.

I know for a highly ranked program accreditation isn't much of a big deal in business, but Im still very curious as to why Schulich isnt accredited. Do any students have a concern about this at all?
I don't even really know what this means in reality. I heard about it when I was doing my own decision making. No one mentions it at school.

The best piece of advice I can give you is go to the school that makes you feel the most comfortable. I went through the exact same thing as you this time last year and I ended up choosing Schulich because the faculty I spoke with said to choose a program based on what you don't know you're interested in. Schulich has a wide variety of career options to explore that Schulich doesn't, which is a really big selling feature for me. You're not going into an MBA because you know these industries through and through, you're there to learn. Placement, salaries, and all that are great, but the difference between these schools is so minimal as far as reputation goes that you should throw that qualifier out of your decision criteria completely.
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Re: How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder [#permalink]  07 Feb 2012, 12:16
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Hi Gandalf,

I'm from Montreal and seriously considered McGill's MBA program.

Here are my two-cents:

McGill University, as a whole, has a very strong global brand -- up there with UofT as one of Canada's top university brands.

The business school, however, lags behind the "Big 4" Canadian b-schools -- both in terms of reputation and quality of program.

=-=-=-=
Canadian "Big-4" B-Schools: Ivey, Queen's, Rotman and Schulich (in alphabetical order so as to avoid the age-old who's the best debate)
=-=-=-=

That said, in 2009, McGill "privatized" their MBA program, closing the loop that allowed Quebec students (in particular) and Canadian students (lesser extent) to pay outrageously low tuition rates. The extra tuition money has allowed the school to attract new professors, renovate their b-school facilities (quite nice), and improve the MBA program as a whole. Since then, McGill has steadily risen in the ranks gradually closing the gap between itself and the other big Canadian b-schools. Schulich had a similar "privatization" in the late 1990s; springboarding the school over the next decade to the top of several rankings (last year's Economist ranking being the crown jewel). Given this parallel, I would not be surprised if McGill's program became much more competitive with the "Big 4" over the next 5-10 years.

In terms of recruitment, McGill is a bit of a mixed-bag. They have very strong placement in Quebec: many good corporate jobs (Bell, Bombardier, CN, Electronic Arts, Pfizer, etc.), some consulting jobs (McKinsey, Deloitte, IBM, Secor, Accenture), and a small selection of IB/PM position (all major Canadian banks have small Montreal IB teams, PSP Investment Management, Caisse de Depot, etc.). The only caveat is that a strong control of the French language is essential to landing a job. Quebec is a french-speaking province, and, even if you will not speak french on a day-to-day basis, you will expected to speak/read/write at a relatively high level. Fair or not, it is what it is.

Outside of Quebec, McGill does have placement in Boston, NYC, and Toronto. It is not unheard-of for students to get offers a BB firms and the M/B/B consultancies. However, you lose the home-field advantage of being a local school. If you're looking for a job in Toronto, you are better-off looking at the Ontario schools -- and so forth with the US schools.

My suggestion: (1) if you speak french, and want to live in Montreal, McGill is really the best option. There is a heavy favoritism for the local schools (especially McGill), and you will have better interview chances than all but the best Canadian/US b-schools. Montreal is also a fantastic city to live in: very high quality of life, with great food, beautiful women, and very affordable rents/housing etc. (2) if you don't speak french, you are better off going to one the Canadian "Big 4" or a US-School. Though landing a job in Montreal without speaking a lick of french is indeed possible, you won't be stacking the cards in your favor.

Food for thought, and hope that this helps you (or anyone else looking at McGill)

-Matty

gandalf007 wrote:
Hi Guys,

I am drawn to Schulich because of the course options available, especially in the arts and media administration.
My goal is to get into media and entertainment industry post mba and its a big career change; I have around 5yrs of W.E in IT industry.

I have few questions for Schulich:
How does the Schulich MBA program help career changers?
Do media companies recruit MBAs and in particular international students from Schulich?
I am planning to apply to Schulich this week for Fall 2012 program, is it too late since Schulich has a rolling admissions?

Lastly, at the risk of being off topic : Any comments about Mcgill's MBA program? ; its Reputation in Canada? ; and job opportunities in Montreal Location? (I understand this will be more of tech jobs)

Thanks!
Ganesh
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Re: How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder [#permalink]  09 Apr 2011, 09:44
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As a student I can tell you the main difference between Schulich and Rotman are the student bodies and the attitude of the school. Placement, career services, core coursework, and reputation are negligible. Both workloads are much more than UBC, so if work-life balance is a main concern - go there.

Rotman has terrible work-life balance because it is very competitive and not very collegial. Schulich is extremely collegial, but that often negates your ability to have any kind of life outside of the Schulich community. Schulich's commute is a bitch, but they have a campus downtown if that is THAT important to you (you could get away with taking mostly classes downtown in the second year if you don't care about the courses you take). If you're looking for a CSR job, Schulich is the school for you.

One thing to consider if location of the school is important to you is to know that UBC is on the edge of town. Granted, it's on the edge with the ocean, there is no rapid transit that goes out there. There's a rocket bus that takes about 40 minutes, but Schulich's rocket is about 10 from the subway.

As far as comparing the reputation of the school with recruitment in Canada, just think of where you'd like to end up afterwards. Some big firms only come to the three Toronto schools to recruit, but that doesn't mean you can't still apply for a job with P&G or PwC. The school reputation doesn't mean as much in Canada as it does in the USA. I know folks who came out of Wilfrid Laurier & UVic who have better jobs than anyone from Rotman or Schulich. Plus, UBC is the most well-reputated school west of Toronto in Canada for MBAs and has excellent professional programs all around (Engineering, Law, and Medicine). Lots of great companies that recruit there, like Telus and Ubisoft, don't recruit from the Toronto schools.

Just go where you think you'll enjoy life most. In Toronto, I'm thinking you'd like Schulich better because at least the lifestyle is a little more relaxed (except for that damn commute and the amount of group work you do). However, if you are not concerned about the Toronto Vs. Vancouver, I'd almost say you should go to UBC over all.
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Re: How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder [#permalink]  09 Apr 2011, 14:39
Thanks again for your insight! Can I ask you what makes you say that the workloads and culture are so different between the programs? Have you had the opportunity to talk to people in these programs? I'm a little surprised there, I thought given that as they're all comparable programs the work would be pretty similar. I just imagine that Rotman is more competitive amongst those fighting for top spots for IB and Consulting work, but that might make the whole program more competitive...

- Though Schulich may be more social, did you find that commuting made it difficult to participate fully (can't enjoy pub-night fully :p)??

- In terms of the opportunity to work overseas (possibly Europe), do you think Schulich has an advantage? I know both schools likely aren't well known, but with Schulichs 'international focus' I would imagine there's more people moving abroad, and might help with contacts, even though the IMBA class is segregated. Then again, UofT as a university is pretty widely respected. I can't seem to find alumni stats on Schulich, though I can for Rotman (one critique about Schulich is they seem to offer less info about their program).

I think I am leaning away from Sauder. Having never spent much time at all in Toronto I can't say how much I'll enjoy it, I would just prefer the access to outdoorsy activities that I think TO lacks. I am just always the type concerned with keeping my options open, but will still consider Sauder (man only 2 weeks to decide )

I think now I am leaning slightly more towards York. The biggest things I can think about it are certain elements of the cirriculum don't seem as 'innovative' (business design and integrative thinking do sound like they could be worthwhile topics to learn about...but Im still skeptical about IT), and the location of campus...
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Re: How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder [#permalink]  09 Apr 2011, 14:53
One more question if you don't mind: I know for a highly ranked program accreditation isn't much of a big deal in business, but Im still very curious as to why Schulich isnt accredited. Do any students have a concern about this at all?
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Re: How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder [#permalink]  11 Apr 2011, 11:08
Thanks again krussell, this info is helping alot.

I can certainly understand that group work takes alot of time, I generally find it somewhat frustrating, but thats something Ill have to get over either way (more so with Schulich I guess).

Though I would generally prefer Rotman, I think I'll go for Schulich because of the greater diversity in options.
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Re: How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder [#permalink]  17 Dec 2011, 22:10
Hello Derek

I have to choose between Rotman, Schulich, Sauder and Univ of Ottawa. I think I can safely omit Sauder and Ottawa based on their less reputation compared to others. (Although I love Vancouver and Telfer's ROI is great)
My post MBA goal is to do strategy consulting in Healthcare. Between Rotman and Schulich, the decision is little tough. Rotman is more expensive, but I feel it has a stronger focus in healthcare than Schulich(I may be wrong here). But, I think Schulich is much more recognized globally than Rotman.(at-least in India, they have 2 campuses here). I have heard mixed reviews about the quality of students at Schulich, but at the same time I don't want to end up in a place where there is rat race for grades.(Rotman). A tough choice, huh !
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Re: How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder [#permalink]  18 Dec 2011, 03:50
aasim2k6 wrote:
Hello Derek

I have to choose between Rotman, Schulich, Sauder and Univ of Ottawa. I think I can safely omit Sauder and Ottawa based on their less reputation compared to others. (Although I love Vancouver and Telfer's ROI is great)
My post MBA goal is to do strategy consulting in Healthcare. Between Rotman and Schulich, the decision is little tough. Rotman is more expensive, but I feel it has a stronger focus in healthcare than Schulich(I may be wrong here). But, I think Schulich is much more recognized globally than Rotman.(at-least in India, they have 2 campuses here). I have heard mixed reviews about the quality of students at Schulich, but at the same time I don't want to end up in a place where there is rat race for grades.(Rotman). A tough choice, huh !

I'm no expert (far from it), but I'd have to say that Rotman has a slight edge over Schulich when it comes to international recognition. Schulich has been trying to bridge this gap by diversifying their offerings - there's the normal MBA, the International MBA, and the India MBA. The one point that keeps getting repeated whenever I talk to students/ alum is the location - Schulich is quite far from the city, while Rotman's got a more central location.

Here's a comparison of the placement stats for the Rotman Class of 2009 V/s Schulich Class of 2010:
 Stat Rotman Class of 2009 Schulich Class of 2010 Mean Base Salary $85,484$88,716 Median Base Salary 76,000 $85,200 % Employed within 3 months of graduation 83% 84% % Employed in Health Care 4% 5% Mean Salary (Health Care)$69,583 \$77,500

Out of curiosity, what are your reasons for not considering Ivey and Queens?

Here's some links to previous discussions on Rotman V/s Schulich MBA:
rotman-vs-schulich-91065.html
rotman-vs-schulich-27446.html
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Re: How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder [#permalink]  18 Dec 2011, 06:21
I am not sure whether the comparison of placements between 2009 and 2010 is fair, because the economy improved in 2010, resulting in better figures. Considering the ROI, I guess Schulich has a slight advantage. But, then ROI itself is very subjective. Education quality wise, Rotman should stand apart. It would be an interesting debate if we could hear from a Schulich and Rotman student. I heard a lot about the location factor and, indeed, it is important because you face it everyday. However, it can be compensated by living 'on campus' or somewhere near it. Of-course,you won't get to see the city much.(no partying!).
Ivey and Queen's indeed are top ranked. But I needed a 2 year MBA to assimilate the learning because the subjects are rather new to me. Moreover, a quality internship does help in preparing for the real job. Also, a 3 year work permit make the 2 year course an attractive choice.
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Re: How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder [#permalink]  18 Dec 2011, 12:24
...

Last edited by deadlycat on 11 Feb 2012, 21:32, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder [#permalink]  19 Dec 2011, 09:36
I know that they are increasing the intake because they got a new campus building. But haven't faced any problem yet with the AdCom. Have you applied to Rotman? Since you are in Canada, you can provide more inputs on various education aspects of Rotman, Schulich.
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Re: How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder [#permalink]  19 Dec 2011, 18:17
Unfortunately, I'm just an applicant like yourself so I don't know much about the educational aspects of these two schools. They seems comparable from what I can see.
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Re: How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder [#permalink]  08 Jan 2012, 12:02
Hi, Can anybody help me with Sauder Business School Rankings and Placements.

I am not able to find much about its placements as I have been able to find about Rotman and Schulich.
Is this school a good one in terms of ROI?

Suggestions are welcome !!
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Re: How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder [#permalink]  08 Jan 2012, 22:16
Sauder is a decent school and if you're looking to work in the Western Canada then it's the place to go to.

Here's the ROI from Forbe.
http://www.forbes.com/2009/08/03/best-b ... de_11.html
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Re: How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder [#permalink]  18 Jan 2012, 20:53
Hi Guys,

I am drawn to Schulich because of the course options available, especially in the arts and media administration.
My goal is to get into media and entertainment industry post mba and its a big career change; I have around 5yrs of W.E in IT industry.

I have few questions for Schulich:
How does the Schulich MBA program help career changers?
Do media companies recruit MBAs and in particular international students from Schulich?
I am planning to apply to Schulich this week for Fall 2012 program, is it too late since Schulich has a rolling admissions?

Lastly, at the risk of being off topic : Any comments about Mcgill's MBA program? ; its Reputation in Canada? ; and job opportunities in Montreal Location? (I understand this will be more of tech jobs)

Thanks!
Ganesh
Re: How to pick a program: (Canada) Rotman, Schulich, Sauder   [#permalink] 18 Jan 2012, 20:53
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