Applying to MBA Programs
A Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree from the United States will give you an excellent education and add prestige to your qualifications. With an MBA, you will learn how to work in a team environment, think analytically, and manage and lead others. Each university and college in the United States has different requirements for gaining admission to their MBA programs. There are also several different types of MBA programs available.
1. Full-Time MBA
The full-time MBA offers core courses that span all management disciplines. Students can also select from a variety of electives. The program usually takes between 18 and 24 months to complete. Students must attend classes at the business school on most weekdays.
2. Part-Time MBA
The part-time MBA offers core courses and electives similar to the full-time program. Some schools allow students up to 7 years to complete the curriculum, though the majority of part-time students will complete the program in 2 or 3 years. The part-time program usually appeals to students who are currently working, so classes are held at night and/or on the weekends.
3. On-Line MBA
The on-line program offers a core of general courses with a limited number of electives. The programs can take up to 8 years to complete, though students generally finish in 3 or 4 years. Coursework uses e-mail, computer conferencing, chat rooms, on-line bulletin boards, and sound and video clips. It is very important to make sure the program is accredited so hiring companies will consider it valid.
4. Executive MBA
The executive MBA is generally designed for senior managers with at least 10 years of business experience. The courses tend to focus on global business issues and strategies. The curriculum is very structured, with courses offered in sequence and students moving as one through the various steps. The program is generally considered full-time and can take up to 24 months to complete. Usually classes are held on the weekends and the work requires group projects and meetings. The EMBA is considered very prestigious; ranking and reputation of the school definitely matter.
5. International MBA
The International MBA can have a number of different meanings. It can mean that the student population in the program is widely international or it can mean that the program is a distance learning program and available on-line to students all over the world. It may also be a U.S. program that is offered on-site in another country. Or it could be that the students complete part of the program at a business school in another country. You will need to check with your choice of schools to see what their International MBA entails.
Once you have decided on the type of program you wish to attend, you will then need to determine which schools offer it and what their application requirements are. While each school will be different, there are a few things that are universal. Here are some of the requirements you will likely be asked to provide when applying:
The Application Form
Your form should be clear, complete, and neatly filled out. You should make several photocopies of the blank form and try several drafts before you fill out the official form to submit. Have someone proofread the application to be sure there are no spelling or grammatical errors.
The resume is a document that shows your work experience and presents you as an individual. The resume should be specific, saying exactly what you have accomplished and showing evidence of your leadership skills.
The essay is designed to demonstrate your writing ability and your grasp of the English language. It should be well structured, logical, and grammatically correct. The essay should present the strengths you'll bring to the MBA program and also include what you hope to learn and how the program will help you achieve your own goals.
Letters of Recommendation
The letters of recommendation are important because they show another person's view of you. Be sure to pick people who know you well and are in the business world or an academic setting. You can brief them and give them a copy of your resume so they know what to focus on, but do not tell them what to write.
The TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) is a determination of your knowledge of English and is required by all schools for admittance to their MBA programs. Most schools also require the GMAT (Graduate Management Admissions Test). Different schools accept different minimum scores. Both tests are now offered on the Internet.
Applications for international students take several months to process so it is recommended that you send inquiries at least 15 to 18 months before the proposed admission date. Most schools will also require that you supply a financial statement demonstrating your ability to pay the academic fees and living expenses. Once the application has been completed, the school will provide you with a Certificate of Eligibility Form to obtain a visa for study in the United States. You will need to take this Certificate, a valid passport, and proof of sufficient financial support for studies to the US Consulate or Embassy.
Once you have decided on which schools you would like to attend and you know the proper application process, you will be well on your way to studying for an MBA in the United States.