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Network of a regional school vs. prestigious global brand?

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Network of a regional school vs. prestigious global brand? [#permalink] New post 02 Jan 2013, 21:14
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Hi everyone,

I have a bit of a dilemma here. I'm from Canada, and am debating between a number of schools at the moment.

The choice is basically between a regional Canadian school (top ranked b-school in Canada) versus a big-name school overseas that carries global prestige with very strong brand equity (i.e. Oxbridge, Cornell/Yale, even UCLA, etc)

I'm deliberating many factors, but the biggest one seems to be the question of 'where I want to work post-grad'. This is very much up-in-the-air right now: on one hand, I'd love to explore opportunities overseas (even US) while I'm still fairly young. On the other hand, my family is in Canada, and it would be tough leaving them (especially for the long-term).

So location aside, the great thing about a big globally recognized brand like Oxbridge or an ivy league school would be the international mobility. Is this mostly a factor immediately post-grad? Or is it more of a factor 5, even 10 years down the road?

Also, on the other hand, if I do choose to stay in Canada (whether short or long-term), the local network that I'd have would be huge. The close friendships I've made, relationships built, etc. would all be local, and that's one of those 'invaluable/immeasurable' benefits of an MBA experience as well. My fear is that if I choose to go overseas to a big-name school, whether US or UK, and then decide to come back to Canada, the relationships and friendships I've built while in MBA school would be pretty tough to maintain not as strong as if I'd have gone to a regional school instead.

So weighting the 'global prestige/brand/international mobility' vs 'local friendships, network, recruiting' -- how would you weigh these factors? Help! Thanks!!
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Re: Network of a regional school vs. prestigious global brand? [#permalink] New post 03 Jan 2013, 07:19
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kdub09 wrote:
Also, on the other hand, if I do choose to stay in Canada (whether short or long-term), the local network that I'd have would be huge. The close friendships I've made, relationships built, etc. would all be local, and that's one of those 'invaluable/immeasurable' benefits of an MBA experience as well. My fear is that if I choose to go overseas to a big-name school, whether US or UK, and then decide to come back to Canada, the relationships and friendships I've built while in MBA school would be pretty tough to maintain not as strong as if I'd have gone to a regional school instead.


A benefit that comes along with prestige of a top MBA is the quality of your network. All your classmates made it through a tough screening process. I don't mean to sound snotty, but at a regional Candian school, I'm betting that your classmates will have accomplished less professionally.

Something else I've noticed is that some top B-schools have a Canadian club for students from Canada or those interested in working in Canada post MBA. In this case, you could get the best of both worlds: A top MBA from a globally recognized institution and a strong network (both professionally and socially) after graduation.

http://ross.campusgroups.com/cce/about/
http://www.hbs.edu/mba/student-life/activities-government-and-clubs/Pages/club-details.aspx?name=canadian
http://www.chicagobooth.edu/programs/full-time/student-experience/beyond-classroom/groups/candian-business-group
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Re: Network of a regional school vs. prestigious global brand?   [#permalink] 03 Jan 2013, 07:19
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