Monday, July 02, 2007

Picking an MBA school?

Is it worth picking a top program for an MBA? I think it is. But I'm biased. DH didn't go to the best school possible because he wanted to work. For him (us), our situation made it necessary financially for him to work, and he felt it necessary to get more work experience rather than school experience.

He already has a phd from a top 5 school, so this degree while terminal is not his only graduate degree. That may have also influenced him to not go to Harvard/MIT business school. The fact his field is not business may also influence us to think it's not as necessary to go to the best school.

But our two neighbors both have MBAs from a respectable but not top school. They are also in the financial field and believe that the best school possible is the best option. Thus they feel that it's better to not work, and go to school full-time.

What do you think?


MS said...

A large part of the decision depends on what you want to do with your degree. If you want to get into one of the more competitive/lucrative fields, like investment banking, then the contacts you make at a top full-time program will be worth as much as the education. The degree itself will almost be a requirement for these types of positions.

If, however, you are using it as a tool to further your existing career, then a part-time degree at a good (not necessarily elite) program will save both out-of-pocket and opportunity costs. Someone who is already familiar with your work will not be influenced by your pedigree, but will notice that you're putting the new-found knowledge to use (you will be, won't you? :) )

Gotta love these ambiguous answers.. Good luck with your decision.

MS said...

Sorry, between reading and answering, I forgot that the decision had already been made. For what it's worth, I made the same call myself, and haven't regretted it.

Anonymous said...

A MBA from a Ivy League School is about options.

If your husband wants to work on Wall Street or at a top Consulting practice, it is almost impossible to land a top job from a 2nd tier school. It can happen, but it is very difficult.

If he ends up on Wall Street making $500K per year, the extra money is well spent.

If he wants to use his skills to start his own Restaurant Franchise, not a good choice.

Living Almost Large said...

Hmm. For DH the MBA is about having options, this way he's not pigeonholed as a "academic" person. The options while not as great per se a wall street banker, I have no doubts he could do it if he wanted to.

The money we're spending could easily fund a restaurant franchise.

Fabulously Broke in the City said...

To me, an MBA is only worthwhile if your field requires that you have one.

If it doesn't, it's just an extra degree that doesn't do much because you're missing out on valuable work experience, spending all this money putting your life on hold (loss of income for those years, cost of the MBA, etc), for something that may not even reap the benefits later.

If I went back to get an MBA, I'd get one from a respectable place because the name means a lot more than the actual education.

You can get the same quality and level of education at a cheaper institution, but unfortunately, people will not recognize it to be at the same 'level' as at the higher priced, more prestigious schools. :(

When I went to b-school, I paid for the name and the networking opportunity with my fellow classmates, not so much the education, although it did help a lot.

Anonymous said...

its about being in a club. for many people its all about that. the bigger the brand of school...the better they feel about themselves. in the end what matters is are u happy doing what u r doing? and how much money is enough? and on the flip side not everyone of harvard's 900 students graduating every year get the 500k pay package.

so it all comes down to balance.. enjoy ur job, enjoy your kids, enjoy your home and you will be happy. if ur in competition with the next big cheese or some famous alumni of ur school... u will never be happy.