I've had a humbling application season. Without getting into the gory details, here are my stats and an overview of how my applications panned out:
Stats: 28 / M / 690 / 3.9 / 4+ years WE in IB
Results (in chronological order):
CBS (ED): interview -> WL -> rejected
HBS: rejected without interview
Wharton: interview -> WL -> rejected
NYU: WL without interview
The question: should I enroll at Yale or try to wrangle a promotion at work and re-apply next year?
I selected these schools because I told myself that I would be delighted to attend any one of them. Perhaps naively, I didn't anticipate a scenario in which I was only admitted to one program. I really like Yale - and grew to like the program even more throughout the application process - but the lack of an alternative option has given me pause. I want to make sure that I'm doing this for the right reasons, and not just accept an offer because I feel that I have nowhere else to go. B-school is too large an investment for that.
I'm leaning heavily toward matriculating. I'm a firm believer that individuals (rather than brand names) are the masters of their own career path, and that a school's job is simply to provide access to recruiters and the intellectual framework to guide students through their careers. I think Yale will more than live up to its end of the bargain on both counts: the program's innovative core curriculum and the Yale College / SOM alumni networks should put me in a pretty strong position come recruiting season. Besides, landing a job my target industry (PE) will require enormous initiative no matter which institution's diploma hangs on my wall in two years.
Any thoughts? Nods of agreement? Dissenters? Any input is greatly appreciated.
Based on what you said, I would matriculate at Yale. Great school, great people and a great brand.
Just because all of your other applications were unsuccessful does not make Yale any better or worse, or you any better or worse. And if are not already in PE i.e. a career switcher, then getting a promotion at your current job and reapplying may get you into a slightly better school ... but your chances of landing a PE job remains the same regardless of where you go. You'll only be losing a year, a year of post-MBA earnings and will only progress slower by a year towards your ultimate career goal