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UCLA Anderson vs UVA Darden

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UCLA Anderson vs UVA Darden  [#permalink]

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New post 06 Apr 2014, 21:04
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I posted earlier about a different set of schools, but I believe my decision has evolved into Darden vs Anderson. I want to eventually end up in the tech industry, but it does not have to be immediately upon graduation. I want to work in the finance end of things within a tech company, but at a higher, managerial level. So, I'll have to research whether I-banking or MBB is the best route to go to get there.

I do eventually want to end up in California, but I feel that (maybe) having an education and job or two on the East Coast (NYC or DC) may bring a little prestige to my resume and differentiate myself when I eventually enter the tech space in California. However, that might be silly thinking, just throwing my thoughts out there.

Neither school offered me any money. In-state tuition at Anderson may make the cost slightly less, but we're talking $5-10K total difference, basically a total nonfactor.

How are the alumni networks for each of these schools? I'm guessing both are not "super-elite" schools, so the alumni network tends to be more regionally focused. Out on the West Coast, do people recognize the Darden name? Are there many Darden alumni that are higher-ups at companies here?

A little side note: this forum has helped me tremendously during my GMAT studying days, while waiting for decisions to be released, and now with decision making time. I plan to actively contribute as a current student at whichever school I go to. Great site and community!
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Re: UCLA Anderson vs UVA Darden  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Apr 2014, 04:50
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Everyone wants to do Tech at UCLA and you'll see a fair amount of success and lack thereof among its student body in doing so.

If you're hunting down a "prestigious" company, you'll be one of many in Anderson's pool of students vying for tech companies. Many of my first year friends there have had trouble landing internships at the companies they had hoped for but are making traction with smaller names. The reality is in the bay, Stanford and Haas reign supreme, with UCLA and USC coming in a large bit after.

That said, how important is the quality of your MBA education? Among any of the programs I was considering, Darden really seems focused on giving its students a quality and rigorous education. Is this important to you? Are you looking to push yourself academically or is the MBA more of process you know you need to get through?

In speaking with tech recruiters (I used to work at Google) they sift through masses of resumes from Berkeley, UCLA and USC. It's sometimes hard to stand out in a pile of quality candidates from your own school. I actually chose USC over UCLA for this very reason - I think I stand out more at Marshall than I do at Anderson, plus the class size is smaller. If you choose Darden, you'll be in placed in a wild card pile that gets looked at more closely. Variety is a good thing in the eyes of companies like Google, and there is no shortage of LA, SC, and Cal students already there.

As a California transplant living on the East Coast, a name like Darden will pull more respect than UCLA (whether that's merited or not). So you may be wise to go with Darden if you felt equally compelled by the programs. Did you visit?
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Re: UCLA Anderson vs UVA Darden  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Apr 2014, 04:53
shadow711711 wrote:
I posted earlier about a different set of schools, but I believe my decision has evolved into Darden vs Anderson. I want to eventually end up in the tech industry, but it does not have to be immediately upon graduation. I want to work in the finance end of things within a tech company, but at a higher, managerial level. So, I'll have to research whether I-banking or MBB is the best route to go to get there.

I do eventually want to end up in California, but I feel that (maybe) having an education and job or two on the East Coast (NYC or DC) may bring a little prestige to my resume and differentiate myself when I eventually enter the tech space in California. However, that might be silly thinking, just throwing my thoughts out there.

Neither school offered me any money. In-state tuition at Anderson may make the cost slightly less, but we're talking $5-10K total difference, basically a total nonfactor.

How are the alumni networks for each of these schools? I'm guessing both are not "super-elite" schools, so the alumni network tends to be more regionally focused. Out on the West Coast, do people recognize the Darden name? Are there many Darden alumni that are higher-ups at companies here?

A little side note: this forum has helped me tremendously during my GMAT studying days, while waiting for decisions to be released, and now with decision making time. I plan to actively contribute as a current student at whichever school I go to. Great site and community!


You want to get into tech and eventually end up in California? I don't understand what would lead you to Darden. Sure, it's a tier higher, but you're hitting on Anderson's strong points. Plus, there's not guarantee that you will find your way to California if you're working on the East Coast. I'm not sure about your personal life, but I imagine if you don't already, you might get a family and property which will further tie you to a specific area. If you want to live in California, go Anderson.
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Re: UCLA Anderson vs UVA Darden  [#permalink]

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New post 08 Apr 2014, 05:48
If you want to work in California, UCLA is an easy call. As far as tech goes and breadth of network UCLA wins out fairly readily.
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Re: UCLA Anderson vs UVA Darden  [#permalink]

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New post 08 Apr 2014, 07:01
As a native Californian, UCLA also seems like the easy choice to me if you want to live and work in California after school. Even if UVA and Darden are viewed as more prestigious in California than UCLA and Anderson, which I really doubt, the difference would mean less than having (pretty much) your whole network in California.
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Re: UCLA Anderson vs UVA Darden  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Apr 2014, 12:09
One thing that Darden may offer is the ability to "build my resume" with a job on Wall Street, and then be a bit more impressive when transitioning into tech finance eg private equity on the west coast.

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Re: UCLA Anderson vs UVA Darden   [#permalink] 19 Apr 2014, 12:09
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