I had a thought/question that I wanted to pose to Paul and the rest of the forum.
In the long term, is it worth going to a school such as Michigan or even a Duke and taking out $80,000 in debt if you can get a partial or full ride at a school such as Notre Dame. While I realize that Michigan and Duke are better schools, I wonder if they are worth that extra debt. Do they give you a huge advantage in the business world or after getting your first post-MBA job, does one's job performance, personality, etc mean more than where you got your MBA? What do you think? What's the true difference between #10-#25 other than a bit higher bonus or salary?
The difference between #10 and #25 is negligible in the long run in my opinion. Your performance, personality, etc. will dictate where your career goes after the MBA more than will the ranking of the school you earned it at (up to a point). The somewhat higher-ranked school will usually give you a bigger head start in starting salary but this can be overcome. If you invested the money you save by accepting the Notre Dame scholarship you might well come out ahead in the long run, for example. Regional factors also count for alot. A degree from a #25 school might actually be more valuable in certain markets or industries than one from a #10. Once you get into the elite programs, of course, you're also benefiting from things like global brand recognition, very well placed alumni, etc.
Paul Bodine /
Author, Great Applications for Business School and Perfect Phrases for Business School Acceptance
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