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MBA - Return on Investment

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Manager
Manager
User avatar
Joined: 18 Jun 2012
Posts: 81
Concentration: Entrepreneurship, General Management
Schools: Babson '14 (M)
GMAT 1: 680 Q49 V34
GMAT 2: 730 Q48 V42
GPA: 3
WE: Marketing (Computer Software)
Followers: 1

Kudos [?]: 39 [0], given: 11

MBA - Return on Investment [#permalink] New post 27 Dec 2012, 11:59
Over the past few days, I have been thinking about the ROI of a MBA a lot. I am posting my thoughts here to see what you fellow GMATClub members think!

First, some background information:
- Here is a really brief post with my profile: 2013-profiles-w-admit-dings-results-no-discussion-136339.html#p1120371.
- I need to stay in the Northeast U.S. for family reasons and am planning to stay here long-term
- Ultimately, I would love to start my own venture, but realize that a leadership development program might be a more feasible career path (note, I definitely do not want to go into consulting or banking)
- In R1, I was dinged by two top 5 programs (HBS and MIT Sloan), but was admitted to Babson's one-year program with a full-tuition, books and supplies scholarship!

Now, I am just trying to decide whether it is worth it to apply to other top programs (i.e., Tuck, Columbia, and/or NYU Stern) in R2. Basically, I'm trying to figure out if a top 15 program (vs. a top 50 program) would even be worth spending an extra $120K in tuition and an extra 3 months of foregone salary if I were fortunate enough to gain admission.

The greatest benefit (for me, personally) that I can see is the breadth and depth of the current student body and alumni network at a larger, top 15 program. Is that really worth the additional cost? Is anyone else in a similar situation?

Thanks for your help!
OptimisticApplicant
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1 KUDOS received
Manager
Manager
User avatar
Joined: 18 Jun 2012
Posts: 81
Concentration: Entrepreneurship, General Management
Schools: Babson '14 (M)
GMAT 1: 680 Q49 V34
GMAT 2: 730 Q48 V42
GPA: 3
WE: Marketing (Computer Software)
Followers: 1

Kudos [?]: 39 [1] , given: 11

Re: MBA - Return on Investment [#permalink] New post 28 Dec 2012, 08:47
1
This post received
KUDOS
Thanks for the kind words and advice everyone. I think that I'll pick 1-2 schools from my list below and put together an application.

@lb2015 - I think your response to my question answered your own :) Apply to Babson/BU/BC in R2 and see if you can get a scholarship, then you can decide!

Regarding the BusinessWeek comments, yes, I have seen them. However, they all discuss the sub-par finance and consulting recruitment. I applied to Babson, because the school has:
- A tremendous amount of support for aspiring entrepreneurs
- Solid recruiting relationships with major corporations and consumer goods companies in the Northeast
- Great regional reputation
- More generous financial aid packages than peer schools (read: BU and BC)
- A one-year program

If you're looking to pursue a non-consulting, non-banking career in the Northeast and hoping to receive a generous scholarship, then I would definitely encourage you to apply to Babson!

Thanks again,
Nick

lb2015 wrote:
Congrats on the scholarship!!

I am in the exact opposite position as you--admitted to a top 15 program (with no funds), but trying to figure out whether to apply to BU/Babson/BC in order to potentially get a large scholarship. I really like Darden, but it might be nice to stay in Boston and it'd be great to have less debt at the end of this ordeal.

A full-ride is nothing to scoff at, but you certainly may have more opportunities at a higher ranked program that would justify a higher cost (or who knows, maybe you'll get a comparable scholarship at a top 15--much easier decision). Ultimately, I agree with the previous poster--go ahead and apply, see what happens, and then you can make a final decision if the situation presents itself.

If you do get in to a top 15 and are still on the fence, I would take a critical look at the recruiting at Babson before making your decision. There are several very negative comments about their career advising on the most recent Businessweek report (worse than anything said about comparable BC/BU). I wonder if some of Babson's placements at good firms are a result of sponsored students as opposed to solid, on-campus recruiting. That said, it's obviously an amazing program for entrepreneurship, and if you stay in the area I'm sure you'll have some solid opportunities. The key difference is that you might have to put in more leg-work to find the same caliber of jobs that you might find during on-campus recruiting at a Tuck, Stern, or Columbia.

Plus, as you mention, your network and the caliber of the student body overall might be stronger at a top 15 (another point mentioned in Businessweek--definitely worth a read if you haven't seen it yet).
Current Student
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Joined: 31 Oct 2012
Posts: 28
Location: United States
Concentration: Finance
GMAT 1: 640 Q39 V39
WE: Other (Mutual Funds and Brokerage)
Followers: 1

Kudos [?]: 7 [0], given: 3

Re: MBA - Return on Investment [#permalink] New post 27 Dec 2012, 12:12
Its really hard to pass up a scholarship, however do you get the same kind of salary bump from a 1yr program? If it was a 2yr it would be more of an apples to apples comparison. My top choice is a top 50 school and they're my top choice because of the financial aid packages. My logic is if you are going to end up at the same company doing the same job for the same salary, why not pick the school that's lowest cost.

However, my understanding is that there is a lot more elite companies recruiting from top 15. There are a lot of schools in the northeast & already having a full scholarship in your back pocket, it doesn't hurt to try, you might get some aid from a top 15 school...
Current Student
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Status: Yale SOM 2015!
Joined: 28 Feb 2012
Posts: 180
Location: United States (MA)
GMAT 1: 710 Q V
Followers: 3

Kudos [?]: 62 [0], given: 107

Re: MBA - Return on Investment [#permalink] New post 27 Dec 2012, 13:04
OptimisticApplicant wrote:
Over the past few days, I have been thinking about the ROI of a MBA a lot. I am posting my thoughts here to see what you fellow GMATClub members think!

First, some background information:
- Here is a really brief post with my profile: 2013-profiles-w-admit-dings-results-no-discussion-136339.html#p1120371.
- I need to stay in the Northeast U.S. for family reasons and am planning to stay here long-term
- Ultimately, I would love to start my own venture, but realize that a leadership development program might be a more feasible career path (note, I definitely do not want to go into consulting or banking)
- In R1, I was dinged by two top 5 programs (HBS and MIT Sloan), but was admitted to Babson's one-year program with a full-tuition, books and supplies scholarship!

Now, I am just trying to decide whether it is worth it to apply to other top programs (i.e., Tuck, Columbia, and/or NYU Stern) in R2. Basically, I'm trying to figure out if a top 15 program (vs. a top 50 program) would even be worth spending an extra $120K in tuition and an extra 3 months of foregone salary if I were fortunate enough to gain admission.

The greatest benefit (for me, personally) that I can see is the breadth and depth of the current student body and alumni network at a larger, top 15 program. Is that really worth the additional cost? Is anyone else in a similar situation?

Thanks for your help!
OptimisticApplicant

Congrats on the scholarship!!

I am in the exact opposite position as you--admitted to a top 15 program (with no funds), but trying to figure out whether to apply to BU/Babson/BC in order to potentially get a large scholarship. I really like Darden, but it might be nice to stay in Boston and it'd be great to have less debt at the end of this ordeal.

A full-ride is nothing to scoff at, but you certainly may have more opportunities at a higher ranked program that would justify a higher cost (or who knows, maybe you'll get a comparable scholarship at a top 15--much easier decision). Ultimately, I agree with the previous poster--go ahead and apply, see what happens, and then you can make a final decision if the situation presents itself.

If you do get in to a top 15 and are still on the fence, I would take a critical look at the recruiting at Babson before making your decision. There are several very negative comments about their career advising on the most recent Businessweek report (worse than anything said about comparable BC/BU). I wonder if some of Babson's placements at good firms are a result of sponsored students as opposed to solid, on-campus recruiting. That said, it's obviously an amazing program for entrepreneurship, and if you stay in the area I'm sure you'll have some solid opportunities. The key difference is that you might have to put in more leg-work to find the same caliber of jobs that you might find during on-campus recruiting at a Tuck, Stern, or Columbia.

Plus, as you mention, your network and the caliber of the student body overall might be stronger at a top 15 (another point mentioned in Businessweek--definitely worth a read if you haven't seen it yet).
Current Student
User avatar
Status: Too close for missiles, switching to guns.
Joined: 23 Oct 2012
Posts: 766
Location: United States
Schools: Johnson (Cornell) - Class of 2015
WE: Military Officer (Military & Defense)
Followers: 12

Kudos [?]: 311 [0], given: 166

Premium Member
Re: MBA - Return on Investment [#permalink] New post 27 Dec 2012, 17:17
Agree with others that it maybe worth it to apply round 2, but ONLY if you think you can put together a quality application in a short amount of time. Also, keep in mind schools like Columbia and NYU have rolling admissions, so you should get those apps in as soon as you can if you decide to apply. Good luck!
_________________

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Joined: 30 Nov 2009
Posts: 3336
Location: Chicago, IL
Schools: Brown University, Harvard Business School
Followers: 44

Kudos [?]: 561 [0], given: 30

Re: MBA - Return on Investment [#permalink] New post 28 Dec 2012, 03:31
Expert's post
Well, if you are gonna go to Babson anyhow, you might as well apply to a few schools this year. Cause then at least you'd have a choice between Babson and X rather than going to Babson and it being your only choice. and who knows what X might be? what if it's NYU with half tuition? How does that match up? Hard to say until you try...
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Re: MBA - Return on Investment   [#permalink] 28 Dec 2012, 03:31
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