Boothie’s Advice to Early Career Candidates

If you haven’t already checked out the recently re-launched Booth Experience blog, run by students at Chicago Booth School of Business, you’re missing out! For the uninitiated, this blog covers the entire gamut of the …

If you haven’t already checked out the recently re-launched Booth Experience blog, run by students at Chicago Booth School of Business, you’re missing out! For the uninitiated, this blog covers the entire gamut of the Booth community, from daily student life to academics; to recruiting, career services and internships; to student clubs and travel stories, and everything in between.

Even if Chicago Booth isn’t on your short list, there’s a series on the blog that many of our visitors can benefit from reading. The first installment came in early November, when Alex Simon broached the topic, “How do you know when it’s time for an MBA?” Simon was 24 when he started at Booth, and with just two years of work experience, he worried he would be at a serious disadvantage with classmates five to 10 years older than he.

Does that sound familiar to anyone? If so, ask yourself the three questions he raises: Do I have enough experience to succeed and contribute? What benefit will I get out of one or more years of work experience? What’s my career progression with an MBA?  “You’ll avoid a lot of undue recruiting stress if you get a good handle on your options before applying to or starting your MBA,” Simon writes.

Whereas the first post in the series required introspection, the next installment, published last week, turns the tables and brings up some of the key questions MBA applicants should be asking about their target programs.

Simon believes early career candidates need to focus on these three issues: How strong are the career opportunities for early career candidates? How can I contribute to the school? Does the school offer enough diversity to explore multiple interests?

“The way I feel today may not be how I feel ten or twenty years from now, and you can only get an MBA once. As an early career candidate, you should make sure the program you select lets you understand everything that’s out there,” he advises.

Simon’s advice is spot-on, so we’re looking forward to reading his thoughts in the final post of the series, coming soon. In that entry, he promises to share some tips to early career candidates who are considering applying to an MBA program in Round 3 or next season.

You may also be interested in:

How to Determine When the Time is Right for an MBA

Timing Your MBA: Work Five First or Dive Right In?

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INSEAD Inaugurates Leadership Development Center

INSEAD inaugurated its landmark, S$55 million Leadership Development Centre in Singapore last week, completing the third phase of the school’s major Asia campus expansion. This year marks INSEAD’s fifteenth anniversary in Singapore at the same …

INSEAD inaugurated its landmark, S$55 million Leadership Development Centre in Singapore last week, completing the third phase of the school’s major Asia campus expansion. This year marks INSEAD’s fifteenth anniversary in Singapore at the same time as the country celebrates its own fiftieth year of independence.

INSEAD Leadership Center SingaporeThe 10,000 square-meter center will raise capacity by 50% to meet growing demands for management and leadership education in Asia, and significantly increase the number of students, executives, top scholars and practitioners on-site.

Annually the Asia campus will welcome 500 MBA students, 5,000 executives, 90 Global Executive MBA students, and 200 participants enrolled in the Master of Finance program.

“The Leadership Development Centre is a significant milestone for INSEAD in our continued global growth and commitment to providing relevant and locally-driven business education across Asia, and globally,” INSEAD Dean Ilian Mihov said at the inauguration ceremony, held January 15th-16th.

The Singapore campus is currently home to 63 permanent faculty hailing from 22 countries, and there are over 7,000 INSEAD alumni living and working in the Asia Pacific region. The expansion will allow the campus to build its complement of world-class faculty to 70, which translates into expanding research in areas such as emerging markets, Asian business leadership, global strategy and other areas of critical importance to the region.

“At the core of INSEAD’s global offering is the large number of permanent faculty present on each campus, highly localised research and diverse mix of nationalities and cultures represented on each programme,” says Andreas Jacobs, Chairman of the Board of Directors at the school, who believes these characteristics are what sets INSEAD apart from other business schools with outposts abroad.

“For companies and individuals to have an edge in today’s rapidly evolving global business environment, access to insights into the Asia Pacific region is vital,” adds Michael Pich, Dean of Executive Education. “INSEAD’s continued investment in Asia, home to many of today’s key emerging growth markets, helps businesses identify, understand and leverage the changing opportunities and challenges these markets present.”

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Survey Says MBA Essay Trimming Trend Hasn’t Spread

Last week, Kaplan Test Prep revealed the results of its 2014 business school admissions officers survey which found that the vast majority of U.S. MBA programs don’t plan on cutting the number of admissions essays …

Last week, Kaplan Test Prep revealed the results of its 2014 business school admissions officers survey which found that the vast majority of U.S. MBA programs don’t plan on cutting the number of admissions essays they require applicants to submit.

While programs such as those at Yale School of Management, Stanford Graduate School of Business, and University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School made headlines last cycle by eliminating essays and reducing word count, Kaplan notes that just 13% of the 204 surveyed business schools had cut the number of admissions essays for this cycle, compared to 2013; and just 3% of schools say they plan to cut the required number of essays for the next application cycle.

“While it’s true that some of the most competitive business schools have cut the number of admissions essays or reduced the word count, our survey finds that the overwhelming number of MBA programs continue to see value in applicants submitting more information about themselves,” says Brian Carlidge, executive director of pre-business and pre-graduate programs, Kaplan Test Prep.

Some applicants may have a harder time with fewer essays and the lower word count, Carlidge notes, because it forces them to be more succinct. However, the essays are perhaps the most important element of the application as they provide candidates with the opportunity to show the admissions team why they are a good fit for the school in a way the GMAT score, GPA, and work experience cannot, he adds.

The streamlined trend is still one to watch, though, Carlidge says, pointing out that several years ago only a handful of schools allowed applicants to submit a score from the GRE instead of the GMAT, but now it’s something almost all schools allow.

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When Your B-School Rejection Makes the News

A popular MBA applicant blogger this season who goes by the moniker Grant Me Admission woke up to a huge surprise earlier this week when he found out the profile about his journey to b-school …

A popular MBA applicant blogger this season who goes by the moniker Grant Me Admission woke up to a huge surprise earlier this week when he found out the profile about his journey to b-school originally published on Poets & Quants had found its way to Fortune online.

Over the past few months, readers of his blog have followed along as he decided to retake the GMAT after scoring 710, mulled over the mistakes he made last year applying to Tuck School of Business, and fell in love with Kellogg School of Management. We also felt his pain upon receiving ding after ding from all five of the schools he applied to this season during Round 1.

While wading through brutal anonymous comments likely required cultivating an especially thick skin, Grant also found much to gain from hearing these fresh perspectives. The plan now, he says, is to complete his post mortem on why he didn’t get into business school, do some serious self-reflection, and see how plans to go to a top school fit in with all that.

As any applicant will tell you, applying to an MBA program is seriously hard work. And with acceptance rates at the best schools as low as they are, applicants need to make sure every aspect of their package is as polished as humanly possible. Take a look at the original article as well as his reaction post. It really is illuminating for many b-school hopefuls out there.

You may also be interested in:

Should You Consider Applying in Round 3?

How to Cope with B-School Rejections

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Michigan Ross School Gets $20M for New Leadership Center

The University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business has received a $20 million gift from former General Mills CEO Stephen Sanger and his wife Karen Sanger to launch a new center that will expand the …

Sangers major donation to Michigan Ross

The University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business has received a $20 million gift from former General Mills CEO Stephen Sanger and his wife Karen Sanger to launch a new center that will expand the school’s leadership development programming.

According to an announcement made Thursday by the school, the new Sanger Leadership Center builds upon the current activities of the Ross Leadership Initiative — including the annual Impact Challenge and Crisis Challenge, Legacy Lab, Story Lab, and skills-based workshops — as well as the Leaders Academy, where students create, launch and lead actual businesses.

Ross students will use the center as a resource for personalized coaching, development, and feedback, while faculty will take advantage of the center to help develop cutting-edge ideas and new leadership practices.

“Leadership development is a strategic imperative for companies around the world—it is one of those burning issues that keeps CEOs up at night,” says Alison Davis-Blake, Edward J. Frey Dean of the Ross School, who expressed her appreciation for the Sangers’ generosity and commitment to expanding the school’s most intensive, realistic leadership development opportunities.

One of the things that sets Ross graduates apart is their leadership skills, says Sanger, who received his MBA from the University of Michigan in 1970. “This difference reflects the innovative, hands-on programs of the Ross Leadership Initiative. Karen and I are honored to support the continued growth and development of this program through the establishment of the Sanger Leadership Center.”

The Sangers’ gift is part of the university-wide Victors for Michigan campaign, which kicked off in 2013 with a goal of raising $4 billion.

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