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Michigan Ross vs. USC Marshall

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Michigan Ross vs. USC Marshall

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Intern
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Joined: 08 Feb 2019
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Michigan Ross vs. USC Marshall  [#permalink]

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New post 01 Apr 2019, 05:32
Narrowed choice to either Michigan Ross and USC Marshall. No scholarships at either, but lower tuition at Marshall likely offset by higher COL in LA, so cost is a wash. I can afford either.

Background
- Canadian, 32M & married
- BCom and JD (practised law for three years)
- Looking to work for at least 2-3 years in Seattle, SF or LA, then likely will move back to Canada for family reasons

Industries
- Consulting (for exit opportunities, but may decide family impact isn't worth it)
- Tech (PM, marketing or business development)
- Entertainment (PM, marketing or content licensing. Particular interest in cross-section of entertainment and tech)

Options
Ross
+ I really like the students, the emphasis on action based learning and the general facilities/courses/opportunities
+ Clearly the more prestigious program in the States and recruited by top consulting & tech companies
+ Generally, I feel like I'd be more proud of a Michigan degree in the longterm
- Location in AA makes it hard for my wife to commute to visit (2x flights) and winters and small size make it not appetizing for her to move
- Few opportunities to pursue entertainment jobs w/o lots of hustle, so likely closing this option if I go to Ross

Marshall
+ Keen and genuinely nice students w/ passionate alumni network
+ Gorgeous campus and I would much prefer to live in LA (weather, events/conferences, meeting with employers, etc.)
+ One of the best MBA programs in the world to work in entertainment
+ Short flight home, and easier for wife to find work if she moves to join me
- Turmoil caused by firing of Dean could have knock-on effects to a program previously 'on the rise'
- Smaller class size means less electives and PRIME isn't as impressive as MAP (though still sounds cool)
- Consulting opportunities noticeably not as good vs. Ross

Questions
- If I move back to Canada, is the Michigan > USC advantage lost, or does its reputation cross the border?
- Is the Ross network sufficiently good (and well connected) in California/Washington to trump the Trojan network?
- Will my experience at Ross be appreciably better (better faculty, students, courses, clubs, etc.) to warrant the difficulties of living in AA?

Thoughts are much appreciated.
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Re: Michigan Ross vs. USC Marshall  [#permalink]

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New post 01 Apr 2019, 09:07
If there's no money differentiating the two choices here and you can handle the strain on the relationship with your family, Ross is clearly the better choice. If you're optimizing for life in LA or Entertainment you could make a case for USC, but in almost all other aspects Ross will be superior in the short and long term.
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Re: Michigan Ross vs. USC Marshall  [#permalink]

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New post 01 Apr 2019, 09:24
NTSpike wrote:
If there's no money differentiating the two choices here and you can handle the strain on the relationship with your family, Ross is clearly the better choice. If you're optimizing for life in LA or Entertainment you could make a case for USC, but in almost all other aspects Ross will be superior in the short and long term.


Agreed with NTSpike. I think you need to have a very good reason to choose Marshall over Ross (e.g. half to full tuition scholarship, or have a wife/family in serious need to stay in LA, something like that)... and the reasons you wrote down don't sound strong enough to me to choose Marshall over Ross.
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Re: Michigan Ross vs. USC Marshall  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Apr 2019, 06:17
My vote goes to Ross - it’s a better, more recognised school. They also have a strong recruitment pedigree and a really friendly student body

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Re: Michigan Ross vs. USC Marshall  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Apr 2019, 17:24
2
Just to close the loop on this thread.

I really appreciated everyone's feedback. Situation changed, however, when USC agreed to re-evaluate my application and offered me a $50k scholarship. That, in addition to my desire to find work on the West Coast and the greatly reduced impact on my wife by staying closer to home, made me ultimately chose Marshall.
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Re: Michigan Ross vs. USC Marshall  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Apr 2019, 22:30
Congratulations on your decision and your admits!!! Good closure to a long story and a great story with the scholarship.

Enjoy LA and the USC program - it has been going up in rankings lately. I hope it is a 50K/year scholarship ;-)

As to the reputation in Canada, as you probably know, Canadian employers tend to favor work experience and proven track record rather than an MBA and don't per se reward with as much of a pay bump for an MBA degree. So you are likely looking at a pay cut unless you can get into one the highly competitive consulting positions, which at that stage of life are likely unlikely that you will want to be doing so much work and travel.

Thus taking a scholarship offer is a bonus. At the same time, I feel your roles and goals more match up with Ross's strengths and its recruiting paths. Hopefully you can work a bit harder and get the best of both worlds.

Congrats on your decision.
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Re: Michigan Ross vs. USC Marshall  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Apr 2019, 20:47
Look at the employment reports.

While USCs employment report is showing an upward trend, Ross is still better than USC for Consulting.

USC is great for Tech (compared to Ross) and Ross for Consulting (compared to USC). They’re probably equally good for finance.

There is something to be said about living in LA and having access to LA tech, media, consulting and marketing businesses. While Michigan may have an edge on USC, if you’re driven you can kill it at USC.

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Re: Michigan Ross vs. USC Marshall   [#permalink] 29 Apr 2019, 20:47
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