Myth: MIT Sloan isn’t a place to become a CEO.
Reality: Years ago, someone told me that if you want to be a CTO you should go to Sloan, but if you want to be a CEO you should go up the river (to HBS). This couldn’t be furthest from the truth. There are so many talented entrepreneurs, founders, innovators, self-starters, and brilliant business-people at Sloan. We may skew towards more analytical and perhaps technical backgrounds because that is one of the core tenants of our program – being analytical and data-driven – but it is not the case that Sloan is a fast track towards technical leadership. Quite the opposite in fact!
One of the biggest myths about MIT has to do with the “T” – Technology. Some people think that students at MIT Sloan are disproportionately interested in business and technology. In some ways, the myth holds up. I don’t go a day at Sloan without hearing the words “machine learning,” “AI,” and “Blockchain,” whether in seriousness or in jest. However, there are also brilliant communities focused on, for example, the meaning of work and how businesses can create good jobs. No matter what your interest is, there is a community for you at MIT Sloan.
Myth: UCLA MBAs spend most of their time on the beach.
Reality: While students do love going to the beach and we host a number of social gatherings enjoying the beautiful California sun on the beach, students also spend a lot of their time all throughout the city of Los Angeles and abroad. Regarding career choices, Anderson students seek out opportunities that both include and go beyond the entertainment industry. There is a different path for everyone to pursue.
Myth: You’re just another number at Ohio State.
Reality: The Ohio State University is home to one of the largest student populations in the entire nation. It’s easy to have the misconception that you’ll be just another number, but this couldn’t be further from the truth at Fisher. The small, selective class-size of under 100 students allows you to make meaningful relationships with each and every one of your fellow classmates and faculty, all while leveraging the bountiful resources of a major public university.
Myth: Northwestern Kellogg is a school that is exclusively for extroverts.
Reality: I have personally found that it is very possible to have a full, connected experience without necessarily having to be in costume for every party or attend every large group event. Kellogg thrives on intimate one-on-one connections with peers in any setting that you choose, just as much as it does on KWEST and section retreats.
Myth: The Carlson School’s small size can be limiting to opportunities.
Reality: Our program size can be a big benefit. You get personal attention from professors and staff. You can actually know that names of all the students in our class and the other classes. Our alumni are committed to helping and staying involved. We have great placement rates with companies across the U.S. and the world. A small program may not be for everyone, but it can sure be for you.
Myth: Ivey’s location in London, Ontario doesn’t measure up to other MBA programs.
Reality: Speaking from personal first-hand experience, I can say that this is not a hurdle by any means. The tight-knit class creates a strong alumni network that makes it convenient to network from a distance. In fact, most of my contacts that help me in my job search are built over phone conversations. I often get referrals by chatting with alumni over the phone. Ivey alumni is readily happy to refer you to people they know who might be able to help. Ivey prides itself on having an engaged, active, and responsive alumni network especially in Toronto, which is only a two-hour drive away if you are really down for an in-person coffee chat. Most importantly, most of the big names come to campus in London for info sessions and interviews.
Myth: The London Business School is a finance school.
Reality: A lot of people in the US traditionally associated LBS with a finance-focused curriculum. When I told them I was interested in startups, they asked why I didn’t go with a California MBA program. However, I have found that the school has incredible resources for people like me who are interested in the startup and entrepreneurship space. They range from professors who have decades of experience in angel and VC investing to the school’s annual hackathon and incubator. And, of course, London itself is an incredible startup hub, and the global leader for FinTech. Regardless of Brexit, it’s a pretty hot place to be if you’re interested in the startup world. And LBS has the right connections with entrepreneurs, incubators, and VCs across the city to make it easy to navigate around.
Myth: At McGill, you cannot find an internship or job placement without speaking French in Montreal.
Reality: Whilst speaking French certainly helps – and learning a new language is fun – there are certainly opportunities for English-only speakers in Montreal, and Toronto is also nearby.
Myth: Wharton is all about finance.
Reality: The school has incredible faculty and coursework offered across other top-notch departments – operations, marketing, and management, to name just a few. As a student founder, I also found tremendous support from the Penn Wharton Entrepreneurship Center, Wharton and Lauder alumni, and a half dozen affiliated incubators and investment groups active on campus.
Myth: Rice Business is primarily a Texas school.
Reality: That is far from being true. Rice offers global diversity within and outside the classroom. I have classmates from five continents. My class took a study trip to Brazil, where we consulted for local companies as part of our global field experience.
Rice has so much to offer. Many of my colleagues have a variety of backgrounds and received internship opportunities all over the country. Being at Rice does not mean that you will only be exposed to jobs in Houston or even Texas. It is important to apply yourself to open yourself up to all the opportunities Rice has to offer. Rice has a vast network of successful alumni placed all over the world. With Rice’s close-knit culture, the alumni genuinely care about the success of Rice MBAs and want to help in any way that they can. Rice’s environment and constant efforts to grow as a business school have been very conducive to my career and learning environment. It is nothing like the constrained program I had heard about, but rather open and willing to help you get the career you want, wherever you want.
Go to next page for the biggest myths about Columbia Business School, U.C.-Berkeley, MIT Sloan, and Dartmouth Tuck.