Great New Resource Guide for Veteran MBA Applicants

Military MBA applicants tend to blow other candidates out of the water, figuratively speaking, because they have a wealth of experience to draw from at a very young age. In fact, my very first client, many years ago, was in the military.

While many candidates can only speak to sitting in cubicles, crunching numbers for the boss, b-school applicants from the military have had to deal with highly stressful situations, think on their feet, make ethical decisions, and lead important projects.

However, the pivot to business school after the military can be stressful as these candidates navigate the completely uncharted waters of the MBA application process. Veteran applicants need advice targeted toward their specific needs and strengths.

guide for military mba applicantThat’s why I’m excited to share a valuable new resource just for these MBA applicants. Matthew Cowsert,  a U.S. Army veteran and MBA graduate from NYU Stern School of Business, recently published a book called What’s Next? A Military Veteran’s Guide to Maximizing Your MBA.

“Before Stern, I worked in the U.S. Army for seven years as an infantry and finance officer,” Cowsert explains. “I’ve spent the last two years volunteering as a veteran admissions consultant for Service to School. Through this work, I realized a gap in the pre-transition process for military veterans pursuing their MBA.”

What’s Next: A Military Veteran’s Guide to Maximizing Your MBA provides practical advice and frameworks to help prospective and current student veterans navigate their career transition from the military into the civilian workforce.

Cowsert believes this book will help military veterans naturally differentiate themselves from other MBA applicants in order to gain acceptance to their target program and land their dream job.

The guide breaks the transition into three phases, teaching you how to:

*Convince Yourself*
• Assess your strengths to highlight the transferable skills you have that matter for your next career.
• Evaluate programs and career options through quantitative and qualitative methods that align with your future goals.
• Ask the right questions, from the right people, at the right time.

*Convince Your Target Program* 
• Know the difference between admission requirements and differentiators and allow you to focus on the parts of your application that will stand out.
• Speak the business school language and understand the opportunities that each program unlocks for you.
• Tell your stories compellingly and understandably.

*Convince Your Target Company*
• Signal to your target firm through your on-campus and off-campus recruiting efforts that you are the right fit.
• Maximize the opportunities and access to industry leaders only afforded to business school students.
• Outperform your peers during your internship to earn your full-time offer.

This guide also includes access to the accompanying Next Vets website, which has all of the templates, worksheets, and recommended resources discussed throughout the book.

An MBA is a great next step for transitioning veterans no matter what branch of service they come from. Applicants from the military should know that business school admissions teams highly value their experience, so if that’s your background, make sure your  applications highlight those powerful and unique qualities.


Matthew Cowsert is a decorated U.S. Army veteran and veteran advocate. He received his undergraduate degree from The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina in 2009. After spending seven years in the Army as an infantry and finance officer, Matt left active duty in 2016 and received his MBA from NYU Stern in 2018.
Matt also serves as the Director of Partnerships for the veteran non-profit Veterans in Global Leadership and is a Service to School MBA Ambassador. Beginning in July 2018, Matt will be working for Amazon as a Senior Product Manager in their Amazon Web Services organization.

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