MBA Program Spotlight: Women in Business

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Recent statistics indicate that women in America earn only 77 cents to the dollar when compared to men. Even though that statistic has been disputed and amended several times, and even though the discrepancy cannot be solely linked to discrimination, as a woman about to make a large investment in business school, you want assurance that you will receive a good return on that investment. One way to ensure your future success is to choose a school that understands the unique challenges you will face and places special emphasis on women in business. Here are three great options.

 

Pepperdine – Graziadio School of Business and Management

What’s so great about this school?  Pepperdine has been ranked as one of the top ten business schools for women by the Financial Times. Among the reasons cited was the attention given to criteria that matter most to women when selecting a school. These include: the ease of establishing a mentoring network, values-centered learning, a 42 percent female enrollment, and a strong presence of women in the school administration. Pepperdine allows fully employed women up to seven years to complete their MBA so that they can continue to grow their careers as they complete their education.

School Type: Private

Median GMAT Score: 660

Average Incoming GPA: 3.21

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 70%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 18 to 1

Average Age: 27

 

Babson

What’s so great about this school? Babson is the school for female entrepreneurs. The Center for Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership is the only center of its kind in the world and focuses on research that examines the economic value women create in the business world. In addition, currently enrolled female students cite Babson’s percent of female faculty, supportive culture for female students, rigor of entrepreneurial coursework, and case studies that proportionately reflect women in business as reasons to choose Babson.

School Type: Private

Median GMAT Score: 618

Average Incoming GPA: 3.18

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 70%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 1.5 to 1

Average Student Age: 27

 

Simmons College School of Management

What’s so great about this school? No men! The Simmons School of Management was the first in the country to design an MBA program just for women and therefore offers an unparalleled educational experience. Gender dynamics are incorporated into classes to help women better understand how to succeed in leadership roles. Other perks of the program include a faculty that is 85 percent female, the opportunity to earn a Health Care MBA or a joint degree with a Masters in Social Work, and access to the Center for Gender in Organizations. This center publishes internationally respected research on gender equity and provides students with unique networking and career advancement opportunities.

School Type: Private

Median GMAT Score: 530        

Average Incoming GPA: 3.17

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 94%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 6 to 1

Average Student Age: 30

 

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Mixing Math and an MBA

Focusrite Saffire Pro 40 motherboard

MBA Program Spotlight: Business Analytics

 Are you really into math and statistics but can’t envision yourself as a nutty professor? Maybe you are afraid of becoming the next John Forbes Nash, Jr. if you hide away completely into the world of numbers, but you still know that quantitative analysis is the skill that will propel your career. Well, you might want to consider a career in business analytics. Business analytics uses quantitative and statistical methodologies to analyze, explain, and predict business performance. The fields that you could enter with a concentration in business analytics are endless: retail sales and pricing, financial services, risk analysis, telecommunication, fraud analysis, and much more. In addition, a concentration in business analytics will teach you advanced software skills (such as Excel and SAS) that will be invaluable to you as you look for a job. Here are a couple of great programs to get you on your way. 

 

University of Texas at Austin – McCombs School of Business

 What’s so great about this school?  UT Austin offers a very robust business analytics concentration with 2 core courses and 4 electives. Many of the courses focus on marketing analytics, but there are also courses on supply chain management, pricing, and social media. These courses are taken throughout the two years of the full time MBA program, rather than after completion of the core curriculum, so that you can apply the principles of data analysis through all of your relevant coursework and really have a firm grasp of the content when you graduate. There are also experiential and international learning opportunities, and an active Sigma Fellows student organization.

School Type: Public

Median GMAT Score: 693

Average Incoming GPA: 3.43

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 34%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 2:1

Average Student Age: 28

 

 

University of Louisiana, Baton Rouge – E.J. Ourso College of Business

 What’s so great about this school? This program allows you to narrow the focus of your business analytics concentration down even further into business intelligence, data mining, or web analytics. You can take just 3 courses in your specialization, or as many as 5 to maximize your knowledge during your time in the MBA program. The data mining courses help prepare you for the SAS Predictive Modeler Certification exam, which saves you the time and money of prepping for this valuable certification later on.

School Type: Public

Median GMAT Score: 615

Average Incoming GPA: 3.42

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 76.7%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 1:1

Average Student Age: 24

 

 

University of North Carolina, Charlotte – Belk College of Business                                                        

What’s so great about this school? The UNC Charlotte program consists of 22 hours of core courses, and then students complete the remaining 15 hours by taking courses in the specialization of their choice. The Business Analytics specialization includes 3 core courses about modeling, data management, and project management, and then students can select their final course for the specialization from their individual area of interest. They offer some unique and interesting courses, such as Econometrics, Business Data Communications, and Pricing and Position Strategy. UNC Charlotte is also one of the best value MBA programs, even for out-of-state students.

School Type: Public

Median GMAT Score: 600

Average Incoming GPA: 3.0

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 49.1%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 21:1

Average Student Age: 29

  

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Don’t Stop Studying Just Yet

Conference Room

MBA Program Spotlight: Schools for People Without Work Experience

 

If you’ve been browsing information about business school admission, you have probably noticed that most schools have one thing in common – their applicants tend to have between 5 and 7 years of work experience. Spending several years working after undergraduate was the norm for a long time and applicants without work experience didn’t have as good a chance of being accepted into business school as their more experienced peers did. But times are changing, just as they always do. There are many good reasons to move right from undergraduate studies to business school: you don’t have to put an established career on hold for two years, you are less likely to have a family and other important obligations to worry about, you may not be able to find a job, or you may be in an undergraduate institution that offers a great 4 + 1 opportunity so you can complete your MBA in less time. Whatever your reason, if you are considering obtaining your MBA before you enter the work force, here are three schools to consider.

 

 

Kent – College of Business Administration

 

 

What’s so great about this school?  While Kent’s specialties are accounting and general management, it offers a wide range of unique concentrations and dual degree programs. It is one of the only schools in the nation to offer a dual degree program of business and architecture. Other dual degree programs include a Master of Arts in Translation and a Master of Library Science, and fashion merchandising is among the eight concentrations offered. Students at Kent have only 14 months of work experience on average.

School Type: Public

Median GMAT Score: 616

Average Incoming GPA: 3.36

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 89%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 7:1

Average Student Age: 24

 

 

Ohio University

 

                                                           

What’s so great about this school? The professional MBA program at Ohio University offers a hybrid learning approach in which classes are held via virtual classrooms but also via Saturday residencies at many locations across the state. This gives students across the state the opportunity to earn their MBA without having to move to Athens or interrupt their work schedule if they want to get a head start on their careers and earn their MBA simultaneously. Ohio University also offers a completely online MBA in Finance, Healthcare, or Executive Management. Students at Ohio University have about 1 year of work experience.

School Type: Public

Median GMAT Score: 562

Average Incoming GPA: 3.3

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 86%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 2:1

Average Student Age: 25

 

 

Texas A & M University (Commerce)

 

          

What’s so great about this school? Students at Texas A & M University (Commerce) generally have no work experience. Many of the students come from the undergraduate business program and are eligible for the shortened, 30-hour MBA program. If students haven’t already completed core courses in economics, accounting, and management, then they will follow the more traditional 48-hour program. The business college places a lot of emphasis on entrepreneurship in its curriculum and the large student body allows for great networking opportunities for potential small-business owners.

School Type: Public

Median GMAT Score: 460

Average Incoming GPA: 3.0

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 60%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 24:1

Average Student Age: 22

 

 

 

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MBAs for Social Change

MBA Program Spotlight: Non-Profit Management

Faces Helped By Charity:Water

 

When thousands of middle and upper level managers found themselves out of work years ago after the economy crashed, some took the opportunity to branch out into employment fields that were more closely aligned with their passions for social justice and community service. Unknowingly, they started a major shift in the non-profit world. While previously non-profits tended to recruit people with degrees in social work, education, and health, they began to increasingly look for people with business degrees. They recognized the benefits that employees with financial savvy and business analytics know-how could bring to a non-profit office to complement the talent they had already acquired. The interest in bringing MBA graduates on board has not waned. And while salaries may not be as high as they are in the for-profit sector, the levels of job satisfaction can sometimes exceed those found elsewhere.

 

Stanford – Graduate School of Business

 

What’s so great about this school?  It’s Stanford. Isn’t that enough? Well, if your sights are set on a top-tier school, there are several reasons to choose to Stanford over some of its big name competitors. Stanford’s MBA program was the first in the country to offer students a chance to study public management and has a long track record of education excellence in this area. It now runs a Public Management and Social Innovation program through its business school and this program has over 50 electives in areas of interest to non-profits, including philanthropy, health care, and the environment. If you opt to follow this program to obtain the certificate, you can participate in experiential learning, social innovation study trips, and numerous clubs that will help you expand your professional network.

School Type: Private

Median GMAT Score: 729

Average Incoming GPA: 3.6

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 7%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 2:1

Average Student Age: 25

 

Willamette University – Atkinson School of Management

                                                           

What’s so great about this school? Willamette is one of only two MBA programs in the world that is accredited by NASPAA (The National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration), so you can be confident that you are getting not only a stellar business education, but also a stellar non-profit education. The Not-for-Profit Management MBA allows students to specialize in an analytics track, a general management track, or to create an individualized program of study. These specializations guarantee students more time spent in classes that are applicable to their areas of interest and less time wasted in classes that aren’t relevant to their future careers.

School Type: Private

Median GMAT Score: 560

Average Incoming GPA: 3.3

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 41%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 4:1

Average Student Age: 26

 

Suffolk University – Sawyer Business School

                                                           

What’s so great about this school? Suffolk University is a convenient option for part-time students, as well as full-time students, because the courses required for the Non-Profit Management concentration are offered in the evenings. Many of the electives teach financial skills: grant management and portfolio management, for example. You can also study skills that are more difficult for non-profit recruiters to find in their candidates, such as labor law and web design, in order to make your resume more attractive to potential employers.

School Type: Private

Median GMAT Score: 498

Average Incoming GPA: 3.12

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 79%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 6:1

Average Student Age: 27

 

 

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Show Me the Money!

Money

 Making the decision to earn your MBA is no small matter, especially when determining the financial impact. Just the first year alone can cost up to $85,000 after you factor in tuition, room and board, books and supplies, and personal expenses. And what about the opportunity cost? You may already be in a great job that pays you $70K, $80K, or more per year, and if you decide to go to business school full time, those earnings are lost.

It’s probably safe to say that everyone who does decide to study for an MBA believes that he will make up those lost earnings and cover his expenses with the huge salary increase he will get after finishing business school. There certainly are plenty of data to back that belief up. But there has also been hot debate over whether MBA graduates with higher GMAT scores see a greater return on investment than those with lower scores. In a previous blog entry, we looked at a trend among some employers who compare job candidates according to their GMAT scores. Since some employers do favor one candidate over another based on GMAT score, it seems plausible that candidates with higher scores are more likely to land the higher paying jobs.  

How else might the GMAT factor into the salary equation? A high GMAT score increases your chances of getting into a better school, and, not surprisingly, graduates from top tier schools end up with the biggest starting salaries right out of the gate. In addition to going to a great school, whether your MBA will translate into a higher paying job depends on your concentration, the job market where you live, and your previous work experience. But that bit of information shouldn’t come as any surprise.

Don’t believe the hype in the media about an MBA degree no longer leading to a better paying job. Plenty of information on the internet exists to prove that it doesn’t, but plenty of information also exists to prove that it does. There are even blogs that offer formulas to calculate the precise salary increase you can expect based on your GMAT score. With all the relevant factors to consider, you shouldn’t put too much stock in such gimmicks. Just remember that the GMAT is only one of the first links in a chain of dedication and hard work that will make your time spent in business school worthwhile, so prepare well and do your best!

 

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MBA Program Spotlight: International Business

It’s no secret that the countries of world are increasingly interconnected. Hundreds of American companies have overseas operations and hundreds of foreign companies cater to the American market. Therefore, the ability to speak a foreign language and a solid grasp of cultural sensitivities are highly attractive skills in MBA graduates. If you value an international component in your business education, here are some excellent options.

 

Georgetown University – McDonough School of Business

What’s so great about this school? Location, location, location. Georgetown University is located in Washington D.C., a town that has been known to attract an international business traveler or two. At Georgetown, MBA students have easy access to incredible internship and networking opportunities with people from around the world. In addition, the full-time MBA program places a heavy emphasis on global business in its core curriculum. All students begin their studies with a three week, intensive Structure of Global Industries course and end their studies by serving as an international consultant as part of the mandatory Global Experience.

School Type: Private

Median GMAT Score: 690

Average Incoming GPA: 3.37

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 51%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 10 to 1

Average Student Age: 27

 

Thunderbird School of Global Management

What’s so great about this school? Thunderbird has been ranked #1 among all International MBA programs for 17 consecutive years by U.S. News & World Report. 56 percent of the student body is foreign-born and every program has an international focus. All programs are at the Masters level or higher. The core curriculum includes coursework in cultural awareness and global citizenship, and fluency in a second language is a prerequisite for completion of your degree. Thunderbird also offers a wide variety of options for completing your MBA, including traditional, accelerated, distance learning, dual degrees, four international locations, and executive programs.

School Type: Private

Median GMAT Score: 610        

Average Incoming GPA: 3.31

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 75%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 27 to 1

Average Student Age: 28

 

Florida International University                         

What’s so great about this school?  The Florida International University MBA program is especially attractive for students who are interested in the future of Chinese-American business relations. The China Track includes a language immersion stay in China while taking MBA classes in English, and the chance to experience the business climate of the economically-advanced city of Shandong. Special scholarships are available for students who choose the China Track as part of their International MBA. As a bonus, the FIU full-time MBA is only 12 months long.

School Type: Public

Median GMAT Score: 550

Average Incoming GPA: 3.28

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 49%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 17 to 1

Average Age: 30


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Weekly Top 5 GMAT MBA Articles October 06, 2012

Weekly Top 5 GMAT MBA Articles

October 06, 2012

Too many articles and not enough time? Top 5 GMAT / MBA articles this week, hand-picked by the team here at 30 Day GMAT Success, and delivered directly to your inbox.

1 Mission Admission: Controlling Your Online Presence
Social Media can be a minefield of potential triumphs and embarrassments, so be careful what you put out there on Facebook and the like. Although MBA admissions committees probably have better things to do than to sift through your vacation photos, you can never truly know whether an alumnus/alumna or a student interviewer has taken a few moments to find out more about you online. Does your online persona represent the true you?
[via mbamission.com]

2 4 Ways You Should NOT Use the MBA Rankings
There is a lot more to MBA ranking than what you read on U.S News, and by blinding yourself to the rankings’ flaws you could end up making a costly and time-consuming mistake: choosing the wrong MBA program. Don’t replace good B-school research with simple rankings to determine where you should apply or attend.
[via accepted.com]

3 Admissions Deans at Top Business Schools Caution Prospective Applicants Against Buying Essays
Would you purchase winning application essays before filling out your MBA forms? Is there a moral difference between this and hiring an MBA admissions consultant for an hour?
[via clearadmit.com]

4 Univ. of Houston: What is a good GMAT score to get into University of Houston’s Bauer College of Business?
88% of full-time Bauer graduates were employed three months after graduation with an average starting salary of $58,789. If you are considering studying at Bauer, have a look at these quick facts.
[via newgmat.com]

5 Twin Passages – For Practicing Your RC Main Point Skills
“The idea behind this exercise is to show that two different passages written on the same subject matter can have two different main points.”
[via beatthegmat.com]


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Weekly Top 5 GMAT MBA Articles September 28, 2012

Weekly Top 5 GMAT MBA Articles

September 28, 2012

Too many articles and not enough time? Top 5 GMAT / MBA articles this week, hand-picked by the team here at 30 Day GMAT Success, and delivered directly to your inbox.

1MBA Applications: Use Design Thinking to Find Insight
As you start writing your bschool essays you realize you don’t really know yourself as well as you think. Best thing to do is – instead of fancy iPhone apps or online programs – go back to your trusted good ol’ sticky notes. “Affinity Diagraming” can help you put things in perspective.
[via kaplangmat.com]

2What Are the Differences Among MBA Options Available to Working Professionals?
As professionals seeking the right MBA program, the options available can be quite baffling. Asking the right questions can help you narrow down the options to one that’s best for you.
[via MBA.com]

3Mini-Me, You Complete Me: Similar Shapes On The GMAT
Mini-Me and Dr. Evil are the same shape but only half the size of one another. Similar shapes have a “constant ratio between any matching lengths, and that ratio is squared for matching areas and cubed for matching volumes.” Simple tricks for GMAT questions that don’t require more than 20 seconds to answer.
[via manhattangmat.com]

4Why are business school applications declining for the fourth year in a row?
Don’t ignore the writing section, receiving a score lower than a 4 can have a negative impact on your application.
[via quora.com]

5GMAT Tip: Yes or No Questions
Knowing when a data-sufficiency question only requires a yes/no answer can take you a step closer to acing the GMAT.
[via businessweek.com]


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Three Programs that Will Get Your Mind in the Game

ABAFINALSopt00050

If you’ve been following the drama (once again!) in the NHL between the players and the owners, you likely are well aware of the need for good MBAs in the sports industry. Sports management is a relatively new field, but with the revenue sharing, complicated player contracts, expansive league rules, and yes, bad boy behavior from time to time, the industry is in need of real management professionals, not former football players who have suffered many head injuries, to be in charge of the business side. So if you love sports but completely lack hand-eye coordination or just can’t run fast enough, the possibilities for you to get involved with the game are expanding. And you don’t have to lose a tooth in the process.

 

 

University of Massachusetts, Amherst – Isenberg School of Management

 

What’s so great about this school? This program gives you the opportunity to earn two degrees in two years, a traditional MBA and an MS in Sports Management. So just in case you should decide that sports management isn’t quite right for you once you get out in the real world, you won’t find yourself pigeonholed into a certain specialization. And as a special note to all you female sports fans, the Isenberg MBA was ranked third best in the country for providing opportunities for women.

School Type: Public

Median GMAT Score: 640

Average Incoming GPA: 3.40

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 35%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 20 to 1

Average Student Age: 32

 

San Diego State University

 

What’s so great about this school? What’s so great? Well how about a six-month, full-time consulting project with a sports organization? This is no ordinary internship. This is an opportunity tailored to fit your interest in sports management and can be completed outside San Diego to ensure that you find the right organization for your goals. In addition, you can follow almost any traditional business track (marketing, organizational behavior, statistics, business law, operations, or financial management) but learn with sports-oriented case studies and guest lecturers from the industry.

School Type: Public

Median GMAT Score: 600

Average Incoming GPA: 3.30

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 59%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 3 to 1

Average Student Age: 27

 

 

Ohio University

 

What’s so great about this school? Ohio University was the first in the country to establish a sports management program and today the university offers several different programs including a combination MBA/MSA, or just an MSA for those who already hold an MBA or other graduate degree but are seeking additional qualifications to give them an entry into sports management. More than 85 percent of graduates have found employment in the sports industry, which is a fantastic success rate for an industry that has only formally existed for a quarter century. Each student works with a dedicated alumni and faculty mentor to ensure the best educational opportunity possible.

School Type: Public

Median GMAT Score: 562

Average Incoming GPA: 3.30

Percent of Applicants Accepted: 32%

Student to Faculty Ratio: 2 to 1

Average Student Age: 25

 

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Weekly Top 5 GMAT MBA Articles September 21, 2012

Weekly Top 5 GMAT MBA Articles

September 21, 2012

Too many articles and not enough time? Top 5 GMAT / MBA articles this week, hand-picked by the team here at 30 Day GMAT Success, and delivered directly to your inbox.

1GMAT Sentence Correction: A Can-Do Attitude
Direct and concise is always better than extra-wordy on the GMAT. Stick to simple language and short sentences. Unnecessarily stretching a sentence makes your point less emphatic. If you have something to say, just say it!
[via magoosh.com]

2Monday Morning Essay Tip: Own Your Goals
Knowing why you want to get into a specific MBA program helps in convincing the adcom that you are a good candidate and would do your best to excel. If you can easily substitute another job title into your career goals (“In the short term, when I graduate from Wharton, I want to become a Consultant | Investment Banking Associate. After three years, I will be promoted to VP and then in the long term, I will become a Managing Director.”), you know you have a serious problem on your hands and will need to put more work into your essay.
[via mbamission.com]

3GMAT Arithmetic Shortcuts: Divide before you multiply
Time management is perhaps the biggest challenge of the GMAT. Small tips and tricks can go a long way in taking off the burden. Reducing fractions and ratios to their simplest form before multiplying will save you mountains of work on test day.
[via kaplangmat.com]

4UC Berkeley’s Haas School Rolls Out New Fall Courses on Social Networks, Social Finance, Women in Business
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, these are all household names. From teenagers to professionals everyone is using social media and it has almost become an addiction. Businesses, especially SMEs, swear by the marketing prowess of Facebook. Also, more and more women are entering business. Haas has taken an important step in recognizing these areas and introducing new courses.
[via clearadmit.com]

5Three Critical Steps to Revising an Admissions Essay
Never hand in an essay that is no more than a glorified draft. Here are three golden rules to follow for essay success. On Screen, On Paper and then Read Aloud.
[via veritasprep.com]


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