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UBC vs Ivey? (Canada)

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UBC vs Ivey? (Canada) [#permalink] New post 05 Jan 2012, 12:17
This is a long-ish post so I'll start by saying my main question is just: "If I go to UBC instead of Ivey for quality of life improvements, will I be limiting my end goal of a career in Corporate Strategy?"

Hi Guys,

I am super stumped between two options for schooling/future and I want to see if anyone has an opinion. First, here is my profile.

Undergrad School: Richard Ivey School of Business, A cumulative average (maybe 3.7 GPA?)
GMAT: 750 (Q49,V42)
Work Experience: 2 years for 2012 matriculation or 3 years for 2013
Community Stuff: Moderate
Goals: Eventually work in Corporate Strategy for a Fortune 500. Potentially top-tier management consultancy after MBA.
Restrictions: Can’t leave GTA until September 2013 because of commitment to girlfriend.

Here are my options:

1. Go back to Ivey for my MBA starting September 2012. I can do it in 8 months since I have my undergrad from there. I get a discount in tuition so it will only cost me $42,000 but I will basically not be eligible for any additional scholarships
2. Go to UBC 2013 for my MBA, enjoy life snowboarding & mountain biking. It will take my 16 months instead of 8 months. Tuition is similar but I suspect I could get a good scholarship there.

So ideally I think UBC is better for my quality of life, but it means 1 more year at my current job that I hate, and an extra 8 months out of the work force. I will deal with that as long as my employment opportunities out of UBC are as good as out of Ivey. What do you think?

Or if you have any other advice, shoot it
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Re: UBC vs Ivey? (Canada) [#permalink] New post 07 Jan 2012, 08:14
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My situation is similar (I'm deciding between Sauder and Ivey), but with a few key differences (no restrictions on start dates, no undergrad from Ivey, and different career aspirations).

I made my decision yesterday that I'd prefer to go to UBC. The main reasons for the decision are work/life balance, and international exposure - UBC is better for both of these. If I were interested in a career in consulting or finance, I'd have chosen Ivey. Ivey's network seems to be stronger, it's reputation is more prestigious, and their average grad makes more money.

In the end it comes down to which school is a better fit for you, and to answer that question you need a clear idea of what you want to achieve with your MBA.

If work/life balance is important for you, I recommend talking to some people who currently hold the types of positions you're aiming for and ask them how many hours they spend each day at the office. If you'd be happy to live that kind of life, an Ivey MBA is probably the best way to get you there.

Lastly, if you hate your job, quit. You're clearly intelligent and employable - go find something else to do between now and when you start your MBA.

Good luck!
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Re: UBC vs Ivey? (Canada) [#permalink] New post 10 Jan 2012, 21:27
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Don't worry about the extra eight months out of the workforce. For one thing, it's not as if you will waste time doing nothing. You'll be investing in your education, meeting new people, and building a network. In other words, you will be productive. And secondly, an extra eight months is negligible in the grand scheme of things. So, in my opinion, the extra time spent in UBC should probably not be a major factor in your choice.

The tricky issue here is the additional year at a job that you dislike. As someone already mentioned, quitting is an option. But in these uncertain times, it's better to not take one's employment for granted.
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Status: Quant 50+?
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Schools: Tuck '16, Darden '16
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Re: UBC vs Ivey? (Canada) [#permalink] New post 13 Jan 2012, 11:09
cde wrote:
My situation is similar (I'm deciding between Sauder and Ivey), but with a few key differences (no restrictions on start dates, no undergrad from Ivey, and different career aspirations).

I made my decision yesterday that I'd prefer to go to UBC. The main reasons for the decision are work/life balance, and international exposure - UBC is better for both of these. If I were interested in a career in consulting or finance, I'd have chosen Ivey. Ivey's network seems to be stronger, it's reputation is more prestigious, and their average grad makes more money.

In the end it comes down to which school is a better fit for you, and to answer that question you need a clear idea of what you want to achieve with your MBA.

If work/life balance is important for you, I recommend talking to some people who currently hold the types of positions you're aiming for and ask them how many hours they spend each day at the office. If you'd be happy to live that kind of life, an Ivey MBA is probably the best way to get you there.

Lastly, if you hate your job, quit. You're clearly intelligent and employable - go find something else to do between now and when you start your MBA.

Good luck!

Haha I am trying to find something new, but I want to be able to demonstrate career growth for my MBA aps. I have a good idea of what I want to do post MBA and I just don’t feel like UBC has the same wow factor on a resume for top jobs, and my work experience is pretty average. Also, can you explain what you feel is better about UBC in terms of work/life balance? Thanks for the reply.
bmillan01 wrote:
Don't worry about the extra eight months out of the workforce. For one thing, it's not as if you will waste time doing nothing. You'll be investing in your education, meeting new people, and building a network. In other words, you will be productive. And secondly, an extra eight months is negligible in the grand scheme of things. So, in my opinion, the extra time spent in UBC should probably not be a major factor in your choice.

The tricky issue here is the additional year at a job that you dislike. As someone already mentioned, quitting is an option. But in these uncertain times, it's better to not take one's employment for granted.

8 months I agree isn’t a huge worry, but it is an opportunity cost, you can’t deny that. Also, I definitely feel like the network you build at Ivey is likely more powerful.
For the time being I think I have to get my career sorted out, and apply for Ivey to have the option. But the other restrictions is I don’t want to continually bug my references about opportunities I’m not committed to.
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Re: UBC vs Ivey? (Canada) [#permalink] New post 15 Jan 2012, 09:53
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Haha I am trying to find something new, but I want to be able to demonstrate career growth for my MBA aps. I have a good idea of what I want to do post MBA and I just don’t feel like UBC has the same wow factor on a resume for top jobs, and my work experience is pretty average. Also, can you explain what you feel is better about UBC in terms of work/life balance? Thanks for the reply.


I want to start off by clarifying that I'm an applicant like you - not an admissions officer - so what I write is no more or less than my own opinion. That said, I think that finding a new job demonstrates career growth (as long as it's a good job) just as well as moving up in your current company. I expect different schools will have different views as to the importance of remaining loyal to a single employer for an extended period of time. For some it may be important, and for others is may be irrelevant.

Most people (myself included) would agree with you that UBC doesn't have the same wow factor as some of the more prestigious schools. With your impressive GMAT score, relatively limited work experience, and desire for an "impressive" MBA, you might want to consider studying outside of Canada - have you considered Harvard?

Lastly, to explain my comment on work/life balance, I was referring not simply to the MBA experience, but to the careers that grads are more likely to pursue after graduating from a certain school. Toronto is the financial centre of Canada, and Vancouver is a leader in small business and innovation. You're more likely to work for one of the big banks or a major consulting firm if you graduate from Ivey. The pay in BC may be less, but there will probably be more leisure time and more options for what to do with that time. I've got no facts to support that statement; it's based on my personal experience and that of my friends in Toronto and Vancouver.
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Joined: 02 Feb 2011
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Schools: Tuck '16, Darden '16
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Kudos [?]: 23 [0], given: 22

Re: UBC vs Ivey? (Canada) [#permalink] New post 27 Jan 2012, 12:35
cde wrote:
Haha I am trying to find something new, but I want to be able to demonstrate career growth for my MBA aps. I have a good idea of what I want to do post MBA and I just don’t feel like UBC has the same wow factor on a resume for top jobs, and my work experience is pretty average. Also, can you explain what you feel is better about UBC in terms of work/life balance? Thanks for the reply.


I want to start off by clarifying that I'm an applicant like you - not an admissions officer - so what I write is no more or less than my own opinion. That said, I think that finding a new job demonstrates career growth (as long as it's a good job) just as well as moving up in your current company. I expect different schools will have different views as to the importance of remaining loyal to a single employer for an extended period of time. For some it may be important, and for others is may be irrelevant.

Most people (myself included) would agree with you that UBC doesn't have the same wow factor as some of the more prestigious schools. With your impressive GMAT score, relatively limited work experience, and desire for an "impressive" MBA, you might want to consider studying outside of Canada - have you considered Harvard?

Lastly, to explain my comment on work/life balance, I was referring not simply to the MBA experience, but to the careers that grads are more likely to pursue after graduating from a certain school. Toronto is the financial centre of Canada, and Vancouver is a leader in small business and innovation. You're more likely to work for one of the big banks or a major consulting firm if you graduate from Ivey. The pay in BC may be less, but there will probably be more leisure time and more options for what to do with that time. I've got no facts to support that statement; it's based on my personal experience and that of my friends in Toronto and Vancouver.



I am considering outside Canada, but more Tuck or Darden than Harvard. I do not think boston living is for me, and if I just plan on moving back to Toronto I can probably get most jobs out of Ivey.

I see your point about work-life balance and I suppose it is a reasonable one. I have pretty much decided to find a new job for a while and then apply to a few schools. Tuck, Darden, UBC, Ivey are on the list atm but it is always changing. Depends on scholarship opportunities as well.
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Status: Quant 50+?
Joined: 02 Feb 2011
Posts: 107
Concentration: Strategy, Finance
Schools: Tuck '16, Darden '16
Followers: 1

Kudos [?]: 23 [0], given: 22

Re: UBC vs Ivey? (Canada) [#permalink] New post 30 Apr 2013, 12:18
cde wrote:
My situation is similar (I'm deciding between Sauder and Ivey), but with a few key differences (no restrictions on start dates, no undergrad from Ivey, and different career aspirations).

I made my decision yesterday that I'd prefer to go to UBC. The main reasons for the decision are work/life balance, and international exposure - UBC is better for both of these. If I were interested in a career in consulting or finance, I'd have chosen Ivey. Ivey's network seems to be stronger, it's reputation is more prestigious, and their average grad makes more money.

In the end it comes down to which school is a better fit for you, and to answer that question you need a clear idea of what you want to achieve with your MBA.

If work/life balance is important for you, I recommend talking to some people who currently hold the types of positions you're aiming for and ask them how many hours they spend each day at the office. If you'd be happy to live that kind of life, an Ivey MBA is probably the best way to get you there.

Lastly, if you hate your job, quit. You're clearly intelligent and employable - go find something else to do between now and when you start your MBA.

Good luck!



I ended up quitting my job and finding a new one in corporate strategy. Either this September or next I will be applying and still have the same debate. How have you enjoyed UBC's program?
Re: UBC vs Ivey? (Canada)   [#permalink] 30 Apr 2013, 12:18
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