MBA Admissions: Tips for 2023

Determining Whether an MBA is Right for You

An MBA can open many opportunities for students—from a new career to higher salary potential. But business school also isn’t for everyone.

US News recently spoke to experts who offered advice on how applicants should determine whether or not B-school is the right path or not.

CONSIDER YOUR GOALS

One of the most important questions prospective applicants should ask themselves is what they hope to gain from an MBA.

“Think about where you’re going to center your studies,” Rachel Beck, a managing director at mbaMission, an MBA admissions consulting company, says. “Are you somebody who doesn’t have a business background from your undergraduate degree and you really need to build your foundational skills? Do you want to center your studies in an area that you want to really build knowledge in?”

To better understand your goals, consider looking into MBA majors and specializations that align with where you see your career going.

“You also want to think about how an MBA will keep you growing as a leader and a manager,” Beck says. “I think this is an area that a lot of people overlook, but it’s a very important part of the MBA experience where you’re seeing yourself growing into leadership and management in the years ahead. So you really want to build those skills during the MBA.”

DETERMINE THE RIGHT MBA PATH

Thankfully, business schools today offer a variety of MBA path options for students—from full-time and part-time programs to hybrid and online options. Experts recommend figuring out which option aligns best with your current lifestyle and responsibilities.

“A lot of students are married, some with kids, and want to be able to live their life while they’re trying to change their position in life, but they don’t want to give up going to weddings on weekends and family vacations and things like that,” Kevin Bender, executive director for MBA enrollment management and recruiting at Wake Forest University School of Business, says.

LOOK INTO THE COMPETITION

MBA admissions can be competitive—especially at top B-schools. If you’re intent on getting your MBA from a prestigious B-school, you’ll want to see how your stats match up with the competition. A good start is researching average standardized test scores, GPA requirements, and required work experience.

“The biggest reason that people are pursuing an MBA is they’re looking for career advancement,” Bender says. “Most MBA programs are going to have some level of work requirement.”

Most importantly, Bender says applicants should research their prospective schools and determine whether or not they’re a good fit for them.

“Hopefully they’re looking at more than one program and they’re asking the same questions to each school, and they can create a pros and cons list for each university, each program, and make a very well-informed decision,” he says.

Sources: US News, US News, Fortune

Next Page: Demonstrating “fit” in an MBA application.

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