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Ross vs Tepper ($$) vs Kenan-Flagler ($$$$)

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Which school to matriculate from

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Ross vs Tepper ($$) vs Kenan-Flagler ($$$$)  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Mar 2018, 12:36
Hi,

Long time lurker here. I'm an international who's been working as a software engineer in the US for 3 years (6 years work ex in total). I'm planning to transition to product management in tech, though I should say that I'm not strongly tied to that and am really open, even eager, to being exposed to other fields and changing direction once I'm in business school. I am sure that I don't want to get into I-banking, that's about it.

I loved all the three schools when I visited. I would put the visit experience as Tepper > Ross = KF , but I wouldn't be out of place at any three, I felt. I will be going to the welcome weekends to get a feel of the incoming class, as well.

Ross
+ Top ranked of the three, with exciting upward momentum
+ Excellent school to get into product management and tech in general
+ A more diverse and exciting class (larger number and more selective)
+ National reach compared to the other two
- The most expensive since no aid. I tried negotiating but no dice.
- Michigan weather (I HATE the cold and is low key miserable during winters)

Tepper
+ Great school for tech, with CMU reputation as well.
+ Really liked the students when I was there, very close knit.
+ New building seems really great, might boost ranking/recruitment even more.
- Class dominated by engineers, other two would be more diverse.
- Pittsburgh seemed a little bleak tbh, compared to Ann Arbor/ Chapel Hill.
- Expensive even with $20k scholarship (Tuition would be $46k after aid)

Kenan-Flagler
+ Loved the community and culture. Students went out of their way to help in everything.
+ Got a full ride, which means I will graduate with much less pressure and a lot more flexibility to move internationally/take lesser paying jobs if I want.
+ Faculty seems to be widely respected - everyone raves about it.
+ The best weather of the three!
- They don't seem to put any emphasis on Tech. I did talk to a couple of students who got into PM jobs with Amazon and other tech giants, but they didn't have a lot of support.
- I am a bit worried by their direction in rankings - they slipped 3 ranks in the last 2 years.

I don't have any strong preferences on where to end up after the MBA, other than wanting to stay in the US. Preferably not in a place with sky high cost of living like NYC/SF/DC.

I apologize for coming across a little vague career-direction wise - that's because I am. I am really looking forward to exploring my options during the MBA and find a niche which excites me. Tech is still the first option because I have some familiarity to it (and the schools were convinced that that it wouldn't be a tough transition for me), but really my first criterion is to have a great MBA experience.

I am also waiting for McCombs at the end of the month. I don't see anything which would put it above these three except that I love Austin, maybe, but for anything less than significant aid, I think I'd pick one of these three.
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Ross vs Tepper ($$) vs Kenan-Flagler ($$$$)  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Mar 2018, 13:05
2
Congrats on your admits! Fantastic job!

Ross has gone to Top 10 this year in US News rankings - first time in 10 or so years. So it is something to contend. Ross has a better experience with on campus hiring than UNC or Tepper. However, you have to be really set on the brand and willing to bet on it if you are going to pass up the Full Ride from UNC.

I have seen people decide both ways. Souvik has picked Ross for example over a full ride elsewhere because he felt the name and recruiting were worth it. I have also seen folks absolutely jump on the KF train with a full ride.

It is a combination of your ability to finance the MBA, network you can rely on for recruiting, and personal outlook (brand vs value).

I would have picked KF 10 years ago. I had no money. Being more established now and since you only get one MBA, I would consider Ross .... but I am cheap :-)

Keep in mind that welcome weekends are staged events designed to convince you to attend. They are not a reflection of how things go every day.... if you have a horrible experience and don’t meet anyone like minded, it does not really mean anything. Don’t rule a school out due to a bad or great experience. The day to day routine will be different.

Posted from my mobile device
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Re: Ross vs Tepper ($$) vs Kenan-Flagler ($$$$)  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Mar 2018, 20:57
adisagaladi wrote:
Hi,

Long time lurker here. I'm an international who's been working as a software engineer in the US for 3 years (6 years work ex in total). I'm planning to transition to product management in tech, though I should say that I'm not strongly tied to that and am really open, even eager, to being exposed to other fields and changing direction once I'm in business school. I am sure that I don't want to get into I-banking, that's about it.

I loved all the three schools when I visited. I would put the visit experience as Tepper > Ross = KF , but I wouldn't be out of place at any three, I felt. I will be going to the welcome weekends to get a feel of the incoming class, as well.

Ross
+ Top ranked of the three, with exciting upward momentum
+ Excellent school to get into product management and tech in general
+ A more diverse and exciting class (larger number and more selective)
+ National reach compared to the other two
- The most expensive since no aid. I tried negotiating but no dice.
- Michigan weather (I HATE the cold and is low key miserable during winters)

Tepper
+ Great school for tech, with CMU reputation as well.
+ Really liked the students when I was there, very close knit.
+ New building seems really great, might boost ranking/recruitment even more.
- Class dominated by engineers, other two would be more diverse.
- Pittsburgh seemed a little bleak tbh, compared to Ann Arbor/ Chapel Hill.
- Expensive even with $20k scholarship (Tuition would be $46k after aid)

Kenan-Flagler
+ Loved the community and culture. Students went out of their way to help in everything.
+ Got a full ride, which means I will graduate with much less pressure and a lot more flexibility to move internationally/take lesser paying jobs if I want.
+ Faculty seems to be widely respected - everyone raves about it.
+ The best weather of the three!
- They don't seem to put any emphasis on Tech. I did talk to a couple of students who got into PM jobs with Amazon and other tech giants, but they didn't have a lot of support.
- I am a bit worried by their direction in rankings - they slipped 3 ranks in the last 2 years.

I don't have any strong preferences on where to end up after the MBA, other than wanting to stay in the US. Preferably not in a place with sky high cost of living like NYC/SF/DC.

I apologize for coming across a little vague career-direction wise - that's because I am. I am really looking forward to exploring my options during the MBA and find a niche which excites me. Tech is still the first option because I have some familiarity to it (and the schools were convinced that that it wouldn't be a tough transition for me), but really my first criterion is to have a great MBA experience.

I am also waiting for McCombs at the end of the month. I don't see anything which would put it above these three except that I love Austin, maybe, but for anything less than significant aid, I think I'd pick one of these three.


Ross will be the best bet here. It will get you the job you want and as an international, that will be your primary concern.
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Re: Ross vs Tepper ($$) vs Kenan-Flagler ($$$$)  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Mar 2018, 10:46
bb wrote:
Congrats on your admits! Fantastic job!

Ross has gone to Top 10 this year in US News rankings - first time in 10 or so years. So it is something to contend. Ross has a better experience with on campus hiring than UNC or Tepper. However, you have to be really set on the brand and willing to bet on it if you are going to pass up the Full Ride from UNC.

I have seen people decide both ways. Souvik has picked Ross for example over a full ride elsewhere because he felt the name and recruiting were worth it. I have also seen folks absolutely jump on the KF train with a full ride.

It is a combination of your ability to finance the MBA, network you can rely on for recruiting, and personal outlook (brand vs value).

I would have picked KF 10 years ago. I had no money. Being more established now and since you only get one MBA, I would consider Ross .... but I am cheap :-)

Keep in mind that welcome weekends are staged events designed to convince you to attend. They are not a reflection of how things go every day.... if you have a horrible experience and don’t meet anyone like minded, it does not really mean anything. Don’t rule a school out due to a bad or great experience. The day to day routine will be different.

Posted from my mobile device


Thank you for your insight, bb. Especially the tip about welcome weekend. To make it harder, both Ross and KF welcome events are on the same weekend, so I can go to only one. I've decided to go to the Ross event because I've been to KF 3 times and Ross only once. Tepper event is later, but I think I'll skip it because it's between Ross and KF at this point for me.

Personally, I prefer value over brand and is somewhat risk-averse, so that's got me leaning towards KF right now. I don't have any funds I can draw on for tuition, my savings will be just about enough for the living expenses, so the tuition will have to be all loans if I go for Ross. I know KF is not a go-to school for Tech, but I'm reasonably confident that I'll be able to land a job in tech with my resume and work-ex, even if I have to do more leg work than others. Plus, I will be debt-free, so less likely to panic if it takes a bit longer as well. But as I mentioned, I do hope to perhaps explore other avenues a bit in school and KF is not as strong there by all accounts - the options at Ross for me will be a lot more diverse and interesting.

I see the votes are leaning towards KF, but both comments were pro-Ross. I'd appreciate it greatly if someone who thinks KF is the better option here could articulate their thoughts. (or if you think Ross is the way to go as well!) Thank you all for helping me! I'll post an update after the events when I've made up my mind.
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Ross vs Tepper ($$) vs Kenan-Flagler ($$$$)  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Mar 2018, 11:06
1
adisagaladi wrote:
Personally, I prefer value over brand and is somewhat risk-averse, so that's got me leaning towards KF right now. I don't have any funds I can draw on for tuition, my savings will be just about enough for the living expenses, so the tuition will have to be all loans if I go for Ross. I know KF is not a go-to school for Tech, but I'm reasonably confident that I'll be able to land a job in tech with my resume and work-ex, even if I have to do more leg work than others. Plus, I will be debt-free, so less likely to panic if it takes a bit longer as well. But as I mentioned, I do hope to perhaps explore other avenues a bit in school and KF is not as strong there by all accounts - the options at Ross for me will be a lot more diverse and interesting.

I see the votes are leaning towards KF, but both comments were pro-Ross. I'd appreciate it greatly if someone who thinks KF is the better option here could articulate their thoughts. (or if you think Ross is the way to go as well!) Thank you all for helping me! I'll post an update after the events when I've made up my mind.


Congrats and welcome into the dilemma that none loves to be in :-D

I agree that Ross can't be beaten as it is one of few schools that master to various degrees every part in MBA field. Look to the following:

https://poetsandquants.com/2018/03/26/h ... qus_thread

However, KF is not easy to pass without studying it deeply, especially that your loans will be huge with uncertain even to gain H1B visa.

I recall my similar experience in 2015 when I put KF in my list for application (not admittance). KF is not known for operation and supply chain, the same as yours in Tech field. It sends insignificant number to SC or Ops. Then, I shoot email to one of the career team who was responsible at that time in KF for supply chain recruitment. The tone of her reply was not encouraging at all,. She even offered me not to apply to KF and offered me to apply to other schools :oops: . Although I value honesty, I found other schools said the same but tried to offer how they can help search for job. I was surprised as she was described that she mush help students. I was disappointed but I did not drop it from my list as I have experience that can help me and good network in the area of Charlotte. Currently, the career team was totally replaced by new one in 2016, which may hurt KF in 2017 as they started to adjust to KF and the environment. I wish they have changed and provide support to you.

My takeout is that the full scholarship demands you more work to see how KF will work. I urge you top visit the school and have open communication with career service about your aspirations and even fears. Also, try to look up LinkedIN KF grads in tech industry and connect with them. Then you will reach out the right decision hopefully.

Good luck
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Re: Ross vs Tepper ($$) vs Kenan-Flagler ($$$$)  [#permalink]

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New post 30 Mar 2018, 03:04
As an international it would be an extremely foolish decision if you let go of Ross.
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Re: Ross vs Tepper ($$) vs Kenan-Flagler ($$$$) &nbs [#permalink] 30 Mar 2018, 03:04
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