What’s an MBA worth these days? You’ve probably heard the pat answer: not much. The truth is that an MBA will still take you a long way in business – you just have to know what you’re doing. You can’t rely on that document hanging on your wall to do all of the work. Nowadays, everyone is gunning for their degree. Here’s how to set yourself apart from the crowd.
Get International Experience
You’re not just going to college to get a job somewhere in the U.S. There’s a good chance you’ll be shipped overseas. Many of the top-ranked institutions, like Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, end up being placed in research of consulting jobs all over the world.
Harvard Business School offers immersion trips overseas over winter breaks. Stanford is another example – their students can work overseas for at least a month to supplement their summer internships. Even smaller schools, like the Shidler College of Business (in Hawaii) offers a China International MBA program that allows students to study at the Sun Yat-Sen University School of Business in China. Being international is almost a necessity.
Take Advantage of Clubs
Clubs and organizations are a great way to meet influential business leaders – especially at speaking events. Using clubs as a networking tool can also lead to future internships and job opportunities that you might not otherwise have gotten.
For example, schools like the Robert Emmett McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University offers events such as Global diversity Day to help celebrate the various cultures and backgrounds of students enrolled in the school.
Speakers and guests that attend these events are often high-powered business executives. Imagine what you could learn from just one CEO or business leader (or even business coach).
Take The Interview
Some schools don’t make interviews mandatory. These schools are like diamonds in the rough – but probably not for the reasons you might expect. Schools that don’t require interviews are a students dream. You put in your application, and you’re either in or you’re out. If you’re in, you don’t have to sweat your way through a grueling chat with the administration.
But these schools represent an awesome opportunity for you. While many students will simply close their eyes and cross their fingers, you can – and should – request an interview. There are many skills and abilities that don’t always translate well on paper. Maybe there’s something you can offer the school that can’t (or won’t) appear on your application.
One of the best ways to research a school is to track down its alumni. You are, after all, paying for this education. Usually, finding past graduates is easy. Talking to them is sometimes another matter. One easy way to do it is to find the school’s page on Facebook or some other social networking site. Find some of the alumni, chat them up on Facebook, and tell them why you’re contacting them. Most people will be willing to tell you about their past experiences at the college – especially if you ask nicely.
Darryl Adkins is a retired business school instructor. You can find his helpful articles mainly on business and marketing blog sites. Visit the link to find out more about getting an online marketing degree.
Insider Advice for Business School Success