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Undergrad School ----> Effect on App! [#permalink]
13 Jul 2007, 20:58
I am just wondering... I went to a good state school with some pretty strong programs (The University of Iowa). But, looking at USNWR's list of best schools I see that they are ranked 64th overall. Of course, this isn't so bad, but looking at B-School websites (HBS, IMD, INSEAD) it seems that a lot of top schools like the applicants from more prestigious programs. Since this seems to be the truth, how big of a detriment would my undergrad institution be when applying to TOP schools?
Additionally, I had actually considered transferring schools during undergrad. Would any of the schools listed below, given similar stats at all of them including Iowa, make a whole lot of difference when it came to applying at schools like HBS and IMD?
Here is the list of schools I had considered:
Carnegie Mellon (21st)
New York U. (34th)
Georgia Tech (38th)
U. of Washington (42nd)
It is important to remember that students are not randomly assigned to their undergraduate institutions. To the extent that the stronger students attend the higher prestige undergrad schools, we would expect the higher prestige alumni to be overrepresented in the high prestige MBA programs.
I think it is fair to say that the Univ. of Iowa is seen in a generally positive light but not on the same level of the Ivy, Little Ivy, Public Elite, and Tycoon U schools. Nonetheless, the gain in difference in perception from moving from Iowa to one of the schools you mention would almost certainly be swamped by the other factors involved in the move. So if you have a very strong reason independent reason to move you might want to do so but I would hardly base a transfer decision on it. That said, you have some strong school on the list, such as CMU that are worth investigating more closely.
In addition, don't forget that where students attended college is another aspect of class diversity. Having a student from a school like Iowa would probably be more appealing in this sense to (say) Columbia than having another undergrad from NYU.