If you are deciding between business school offers, you are likely attending MBA admitted student events. These events are a wealth of information, if you know where to look, and can really help you decide which school to attend.
Check out your potential classmates.
Your cohort is key at business school, so pay attention to whether or not you click with your fellow admits. Does it seem like it would be easy to make friends, study together and collaborate academically and professionally? Is the class as diverse, global and gender balanced as you want it to be?
Pay attention to current student engagement.
Do you see a lot of current students participating in the event? Is it just the same few students, or are lots of people into it?
Ask questions about the career office, class availability and other areas of concern.
As an applicant, it’s hard to ask questions that telegraph any doubt about the school, or about your fit with the culture. However, you might well be wondering how easy it is to get the classes you want, whether the career office really works individually with students, and what the dating scene is actually like. Now is your chance to ask these tough questions.
Look at housing and eat on campus.
Take the opportunity to check out food and housing options. If students live in dorms, ask to see them. If you are coming with a family or partner, does the school offer housing that you can visit? Or do MBA students tend to live in certain areas or apartment buildings? And what is the food like? These are all important quality of life factors.
Are you comfortable at the parties?
Finally, what are the parties like? This is a serious question – does social life seem to revolve around alcohol? Many of the top schools have a weekend culture that resembles undergraduate Greek life, which may or may not be a fit for you. If you prefer to socialize in smaller groups, perhaps without alcohol, pay attention to the social events that are organized during the welcome event and make sure that there are comfortable options.
MBA admitted student’s events are worth attending, even though you have likely visited the campus before. After all the time and effort that you invested in getting a seat in the class, enjoy the role reversal. Let schools woo you, and take the opportunity to get a more candid perspective.
Karen has more than 12 years of experience evaluating candidates for admission to Dartmouth College and to the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth. Since founding North Star Admissions Consulting in 2012, she has helped applicants gain admission to the nation’s top schools, including Stanford, Harvard, Yale, Wharton, MIT, Tuck, Columbia, Kellogg, Booth, Haas, Duke, Johnson, Ross, NYU, UNC, UCLA, Georgetown and more. Clients have been awarded more than 19.6 million dollars in scholarships, and more than 96% have gotten into one of their top choice schools.