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I think Darden's curriculum is like HBS, all case studies. Not sure if that's the reason it's "tough", but it's definitely a very different structure that many of us might not be used to.
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I just got the admit to Ross with no money and was waitlisted at Darden in R1. Like Pelihu, I have a legal background and am just finishing up law school. However, I am planning to practice law after finishing my mba. I'm getting my mba to be able to "speak the clients' language" and provide better multi-dimensional support to corporate clients.
That said, I was leaning toward Darden because of the case method, which I have gotten used to, and because my gf will be working in DC. I also loved the community when I visited.
However, I want to end up in Chicago and Ross seems to have better ties there. Also, the MAP program will give me good experience in business since I will be going back to law afterwards.
Any advice? Assuming I get bumped into the accepted pool at Darden.
back when i was doing my research into b-schools with social enterprise programs, darden didn't even make a blip. michigan, however, is very well-known and well-respected in this area. For a number of reasons, I didn't apply to ross, but i have run into lots of people who are surprised that i didn't, given my background.
The data from pelihu is dated '06 while yours is supposedly '07. When last August I was choosing the schools to apply, I noticed that Darden had a very good employment rate that made me to send GMAT results there.
I copied the data straight out of the most recent edition (2008) of the US News guide to graduate schools. The data should be equivalent and comparable for each of the schools. Let's just say I don't think any of the schools would allow incorrect (negative) information to be published without a lot of kicking and screaming. If I recall correctly, I think the publication comes out in March or April each year, so a new edition should be available any time now.
Regarding Darden's curriculum, I believe Darden has a historical reputation of being really tough, but really I don't think the current curriculum is more challenging than at other top schools. We sometimes hear from alumni who talk about how Darden used to have classes every Saturday and how they had 3 cases every single day, and how they had to walk up hill each way, etc. That's really not the case any more. We generally have two or three cases per day, and sometimes have classes or programs on Fridays (nothing happens on the weekend, ever). The school was very accommodating during peak recruiting season. I've spoken to people at other top business schools and I don't believe it is any more challenging at Darden. I think the boot camp reputation is something that has been embraced by the school and alumni through the years, and recruiters seem to credit us with being a hard working bunch, but really the workload was very manageable and comparable to other rigorous schools.
I wanted to point out one more thing that kind of hit me as I worked through interviewing season a few months ago. Once you get into the interview room, it doesn't much matter which school you are at. If you blow the interview, you're not getting the job whether you are at Darden, Ross or Wharton. If you nail the interview (and beat out the competition of course) you'll get the job. Recruiters don't waste time interviewing students unless they are serious about handing out offers. So, as discussed elsewhere, a key component when selecting a school is whether your target employers and industries recruit on campus. My personal experience was that I made closed lists for every top bank by being a solid citizen at recruiting events; others here did as well. There were some obvious reasons why some people were not invited to closed lists - poor manners, poor networking skills, rude behavior, stupid fashion decisions, and things like that. Let's face it, these people would have been just as rude , poorly behaved and comically dressed if they were at Ross or UCLA or Tuck or anywhere else. So, I think the moral of the story is that the one thing that will be common to whatever school you choose is y-o-u you; if recruiters come on campus, the same old you will be there to either earn the position or screw it up. Maybe people from Harvard and Stanford are given the benefit of the doubt, but the rest of us will have to show what we've got in the interview.
Re: Ross or Darden
15 Mar 2008, 15:39