Today’s post addresses the fortunate MBA applicants facing not just two, but three or more offers of admission from their target schools. While the adage is “There’s never too much of a good thing,” the reality is that a bounty of b-school acceptances can produce a lot of anxiety in many candidates.
“How do I decide, and what if I make the wrong choice?” they wonder. If you find yourself with this enviable problem, consider the following when weighing multiple admissions offers. Forget about rankings and reputation and think long and hard about the other particulars of each school, such as size, academics or location.
Does your desire to live in an urban setting outweigh a preference for a smaller class size? Is there a financial incentive that puts one school in the lead? Is the diversity of the student body important? Is the academic focus on case studies, or more experiential?
You might not have had a strong preference before, but you should tally up the different characteristics to see which way the wind really blows.
If you haven’t already visited the campus as part of your application process, now’s the time to do so. Sit in on a class, chat with students and professors, hang out on campus and generally soak up the atmosphere. This is where you’ll be spending the next two years of your life, so making sure the program is a good fit for you academically and socially is imperative.
Even if you have already toured the school, consider visiting again to attend events designed for admitted students so you can scope out your potential classmates. These people will become a part of your future network, and test driving your comfort level with them prior to committing makes sense.
MBA candidates should make sure that the school graduates people who work in your target industry, possess your ideal job within that industry, and are willing to share their wisdom and advice with current students.
The decision of where to pursue an MBA is a weighty one, so do your homework and understand the strengths and potential drawbacks of each of your options.
Whether you end up choosing a place that feels like home, or want to go to a school that takes you past your safe place a bit to help you stretch your boundaries and perspectives, it may provide some peace of mind to know that in these cases, there’s rarely a “wrong” choice to be made.