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LBS vs Insead (some $) vs SDA Bocconi (full ride) vs MBS

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LBS vs Insead (some $) vs SDA Bocconi (full ride) vs MBS [#permalink] New post 24 Jun 2009, 11:33
Advice urgently required.

I am in a BIG dilemma as to which school to choose from.

the money does tip the balance.

LBS
- Great Brand
- Strong in Finance
- Good recognition in Europe and Asia, somewhat in US

Insead
- Some money
- Great brand
- 1 year
- Good recognition in Europe and Asia, somewhat in US
- Strong in consulting

Bocconi
- Free Ride
- Good brand, but not as well recognised outside of Europe
(Not sure about recognition in US and Asia though...can anyone comment?)
- 1 year
- M/B/B recruits there as the faculty is strong in strategic management
- Greater ROI in short-term

MBS
- Very Strong recognition in Australia
- Small class, tight network
- Good recognition in Asia, not sure about rest of Europe or US

Decisions decisions have to be made.....

I have a background in consulting and banking and wish to go back to either of them after an MBA.

What are your advice my dear friends?
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Re: LBS vs Insead (some $) vs SDA Bocconi (full ride) vs MBS [#permalink] New post 24 Jun 2009, 12:08
Well buddy the question is really for you ? Is 1 year truly an advantage for you / your situation ? If so INSEAD sounds like the best bet. Or if you want to wait to graduate a little longer in hope that the market picks up again then LBS wins. Is debt a major concern for you ? then Bocconni is great with a full ride. Is the location of Australia really important to you ? then MBS wins. Perhaps if you try listing out your own priorities and expectations from an MBA here, it might help.

Try listing out :
1) Your ideal post MBA location (and assign from 1-5 a number on how important this location is to you with 5 being the most important)
2) Your ideal post MBA employer / industry
3) Other priorities such as MBA duration, class size, brand value etc.

ps. many many congratulations. Many folks would sacrifice a kidney for these many admits.
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Re: LBS vs Insead (some $) vs SDA Bocconi (full ride) vs MBS [#permalink] New post 24 Jun 2009, 20:22
Thanks mate!

Ideally I will love to work in Europe after graduation, however based on the current employment climate I do have some reservations as to whether I can easily find a job there. I am an international with no strong european speaking skills but relatively (i would like to think so) strong english language skills.

I can take on the debt with borrowings but there will be pressure to find an internship and work pretty much after the MBA.

Brand value is pretty high on my consideration list as I have not firmed up where I can and will work. It's mainly because I have a partner to consider as well and his plans will matter.

After MBA, will like to go into consulting / finance. My work experience so far has been in these 2 fields and I will like to continue being in either of these fields afterwards.

What made you choose LBS seeing that you are from Australia as well?
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Re: LBS vs Insead (some $) vs SDA Bocconi (full ride) vs MBS [#permalink] New post 24 Jun 2009, 23:33
I get the impression that your biggest priority is the brand of the b-school. So this eliminates Bocconi and MBS. LBS and INSEAD are global Ultra Elite schools. We use this clustering system to categorize international schools : ranks-and-clusterings-of-various-international-b-schools-78320.html. Either one of the Ultra Elite schools will give you a great brand and many many opportunities that wont be open to you from MBS/Bocconi which are regional brands (for Austraila/Italy).

However your aims of consulting / finance are a bit confusing because, for most people, its one or the other. LBS places tons of folks in M/B/B and it also places a lot of people in the London finance hub. INSEAD has an even better consulting placement record but its not quite as strong as LBS in finance. Finally as you probably already know, INSEAD MBA can be had a lot quicker than the LBS MBA. One thing you may want to consider is the visa process for jobs is pretty straightforward for Aussies in the UK, but not so easy in mainland Europe.

As far as money goes, look at the MBA as a longer term investment ( a once in your lifetime experience). Most alumnae I've spoken to seem to have paid off the debt at most in 3-4 years (but usually earlier than that).

(ps. there is nothing wrong in being a brand whore - I picked LBS also because of a strong brand, which will be important when I return to Australia. Both INSEAD and LBS hold a lot of respect in Australia).
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Re: LBS vs Insead (some $) vs SDA Bocconi (full ride) vs MBS [#permalink] New post 24 Jun 2009, 23:55
Hahaha.... :lol:

I do think I could be a brand whore indeed...from the sound of it....I am perhaps in denial.... :oops:

Actually if the intention to stay in London / Europe is there and is possible, I don't see much difference between LBS and SDA Bocconi, as Bocconi has a strong network within finance in London as well.

However that said, I will like to have the flexibility to be able to choose to come back to Asia / Australia should there be better job opportunities in Asia / Australia after the MBA.

I have done both consulting and finance. Though it is good to have the single-minded focus on the area where you wish to end up working, in this tough economic climate, sometimes you have to take the best opportunity that is offered to you at that point in time, be it consulting or finance.

You have no intention to stay in Europe afterwards? If so, why take the expense and go to LBS? If you intend to stay in Australia, why not MBS or AGSM (god knows what they are called now!)
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Re: LBS vs Insead (some $) vs SDA Bocconi (full ride) vs MBS [#permalink] New post 25 Jun 2009, 00:12
I have been asked this question a few times (esp from mates in Sydney who think I'm nuts). My answer is - its worth it. I don't believe that either MBS or AGSM provide the kind of experience that will enable me to make my intended career switch from IT to finance (sales and trading), whereas LBS with its location and its 2 year curriculum will provide me with the best opportunities. Furthermore, I'd like to live the life of a small fish in a big ocean (London) for a few years. I consider that exposure to be very important when I return. All the admits (both from Australia and elsewhere) I've met so far have only reinforced the belief that I've made the right choice. I'm traveling at the moment and meeting some great people in other LBS admits - everyone's extraordinary and yet humble and welcoming. I know that I'll really enjoy 2 years with this peer group and I know that the peer group in AGSM and MBS will not be as diverse (the class size for both these programs is tiny).


mbagogogo wrote:
You have no intention to stay in Europe afterwards? If so, why take the expense and go to LBS? If you intend to stay in Australia, why not MBS or AGSM (god knows what they are called now!)
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Re: LBS vs Insead (some $) vs SDA Bocconi (full ride) vs MBS [#permalink] New post 25 Jun 2009, 02:41
Wow. INSEAD gave you one of the awards that go with the admit decision? I am impressed.

Between LBS and INSEAD, it is clear to me that you should go for INSEAD, even though I will be your classmate and will envy your award :oops:

If money is an important factor then this does tip the balance. INSEAD will be A LOT less expensive than LBS. LBS is costlier even before you take the scholarship into account. Then you have another factor - access to the Asian job market. If that is important to you as well, then INSEAD has another advantage with the Singapore campus. All else is more or less equal or too close to call: brand strength, placement in finance, diversity of students.
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Re: LBS vs Insead (some $) vs SDA Bocconi (full ride) vs MBS [#permalink] New post 16 Aug 2009, 12:17
I can attest to the power of the Bocconi brand in New York. I had contacted some Hedge Fund recruiters about various brand recognition in the US. Apparently, Insead(of course) and Bocconi offer top placement. This was also ahead of Hec Paris. Anyway, not sure if you want to go in HF but maybe this might help others out there. 8-)
Re: LBS vs Insead (some $) vs SDA Bocconi (full ride) vs MBS   [#permalink] 16 Aug 2009, 12:17
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