I am thrilled to share that I got into Kellogg yesterday! It was a completely different feeling: My acceptance to Yale was like being uncuffed from the shackles of anxiety; admission to Kellogg was like finally leaving my jail cell and seeing the light of day. As I noted earlier this week I was kind of a hot mess during the (seemingly) endless waiting season. On Monday, when I got the call, I was finally able to celebrate that my hard work had paid off. Although I’m going to take the holidays to think about which school to attend, I have some preliminary thoughts I want to share. Hopefully my readers will weigh in, too!
I’ve decided to pretend to be systematic about my decision. I have crafted a list of the most important factors in making my decision and am going to host a battle royale of sorts. because there can be only one! (Heidi Klum just flashed through my mind. I should probably not think of this as a fashion contest…oh wait I already did, not once but twice…)
So the major components that I am looking for in a Business School are as follows: Integrity (OMG, ethics at b-school?!), Prestige (admitted reputation whore here), Diversity (challenge me!), and Career (not salary, rather “dream fulfillment”). I’ll rate each school on a scale from 1-5.
I chose to apply to the schools I applied to because they produce graduates who are socially-minded, their alumni’s greatest accomplishments are often impact-driven not finance-driven. These schools top the list of having a combination of great programs, great alumni, great impact. The thing that makes these school stand out for me though is the commitment to social impact on a deep, sustained level. Both offer strong curricula in non-profit management, and wonderfully enough they offer “Loan Forgiveness” to those who enter the public sector. Yale has a strong edge out on Kellogg for me because Kellogg’s upper threshold is $85,000 per year, while Yale’s is commensurate with the average annual salary (or $100,000+). Now that is truly putting your money where your mouth is.
The other thing worth mentioning is the leadership at the schools. Dean Blount and Dean Snyder are fantastic. They have both spoken passionately about the importance of social impact work and they are fresh-faced and fulsome about their school’s futures. It means a lot to me that they prioritize this kind of civic engagement and that they want to move their programs to the next level of excellence.
Yale takes the lead on this category because of the more endowed Loan Forgiveness program and the percentage of people who go into social impact fields.
I chose to apply to top schools because let’s be honest, it’s easier to get your foot in the door when you have a brand name on your resume. Yale’s going to hold more weight than Kellogg because I’m planning on working in non-profit. Most people (::cough:: me a year ago) are not so familiar with business schools, so the overall parent university is the real linchpin. Kellogg is a highly esteemed business school, so people who do know will certainly understand the cachet. My only concern with Kellogg in this area is the obsession with the 1Y and part-time program. It just gives me pause that they might be moving their focus and thus diluting some of the resources for the 2Y program.
This category is kind of a toss-up because Yale is universally acclaimed as a world-class university, while its business school is quite young, whereas Kellogg is fabulously perceived but Northwestern lacks some star power on the coasts. My prestige ranking is a mix of my field’s preception (first number) and the business world’s perception (second number).