For many aspiring MBA students, the application process can be grueling. Planning for success is imperative in the business world, and the same approach proves true for business students who wish to obtain a post-graduate degree.
1. Get InvolvedStudents and recent graduates who hope to earn an MBA should make networking a top priority. Recommendations are required as part of the admissions process; and a good relationship with industry leaders, professors and employers can grab the attention of the admissions department. Internships, entry-level jobs and volunteer programs are all excellent ways to meet mentors. Students should work to develop and maintain these relationships to secure a positive and thorough recommendation. It is never too early, or too late, to begin networking. However, it is a general rule that the longer the relationship, the stronger the recommendation.
2. Start EarlyAs future business leaders, prospective MBA students should be familiar with time management and planning. Undergraduate students who plan to apply for graduate programs are encouraged to begin researching graduate programs a year in advance. Many students find it helpful to compile a short list of schools that suit both their financial and professional needs. Some students will need to take supplemental classes such as accounting or finance in order to enter a graduate program with the necessary prerequisites.
3. StudyIn addition to ongoing coursework, students who are preparing for an MBA will need to begin studying for the GMAT a year in advance. The GMAT is a standardized test used by business schools as a measurement of how suited a student is for graduate management programs. There are four parts of the test: quantitative, verbal, integrated and analytical. Students can obtain various books and study materials for this test, and are strongly encouraged to participate in prep courses and practice tests.
3. Evaluate StrengthsA single talent or skill cannot guarantee acceptance into an MBA program. Admissions panels consider a wide range of factors when choosing candidates, which means certain attributes may be overlooked and others may be scrutinized. During the application process, it is imperative for students to provide evidence of their strengths by citing accomplishments and achievements. It is also, however, important to be prepared to answer for any poor grades or a lack of community involvement.
5. Practice communications skillsStudents will be required to submit essays during the admissions process. These essays often require students to share meaningful information in an extremely concise manner. Also, students will most likely be invited to an interview during the last stages of admission. In order to convey confidence, students will need to practice responses and positive communication techniques through both speech and body language.
About the author: Samantha Gray is a freelance writer for www.bachelorsdegreeonline.com She volunteers as a tutor for a literacy organization, driving her passion for all things education and learning. Questions and comments may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org