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Mar 12, 2018

U.S. News Reveals Sneak Peek of Its 2019 Business School Rankings

US News Business Schools

With just over a week before U.S. News & World Report reveals its eagerly-anticipated 2019 best business school rankings, the publication offered a sneak peek of the business schools that managed to earn spots within the top 10.

Unsurprisingly, the top 10 of the 2019 rankings resembles the publication’s 2018 edition, with nine out of the top 10 schools nearing the top of the annual list. The lone ranking variation from 2018 to 2019 will be the University of Michigan Stephen M. Ross School of Business, which came in 11th in the previous year.

The top ten business schools for the 2019 U.S. News rankings are as follows (unordered):

The one school left out of the newest rankings from the previous edition was the Yale School of Management.

The publication will release the full list of the 2019 best business school rankings will officially arrive on March 20, 2018. Stay tuned for more updates on the rankings on MetroMBA.

Posted in: Featured Home, MBA Rankings, News, US News | 1 comment

Mar 6, 2018

Our 5 Favorite MBA Podcasts Right Now

5 Best Podcasts MBAs

Clear Admit recently looked into some of the best business school podcasts out today. Take a look at a few of the premiere productions below.


Many business schools and MBA students have recently begun to produce podcasts, discussing the diverse range of student and graduate experiences as well as current trends and relevant topics in business. These podcasts are unique in that they provide a candid, first-person look at business school from those currently enrolled, allowing for an open platform to discuss business topics outside of the confines of the university. While this is a fairly new trend, there are several different podcasts out there for those who might be interested to learn more. We’ve assembled our five favorite MBA podcasts right now, and we’ll keep an eye out for new podcasts to highlight going forward.

Business Beyond Usual, by Ross Business School Students

One very cool MBA podcast on our radar is Business Beyond Usual, produced by students at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business. The podcast tackles a variety of issues of interest to both prospective and current business school students. Recent episodes have delved into topics including:

  • Is business education a waste of money?
  • Do school rankings actually mean anything?
  • If you want to make a difference in the world, is working for a consulting firm selling out?

The podcast describes itself as having no rules or moderators, so those looking for an unfiltered opinion on the MBA experience may be interested in what these Michigan students are doing. With more than 20 episodes in the series already, there’s a wealth of material already for this relatively new podcast. Business Beyond Usual is available on iTunes, Stitcher, and Soundcloud.

Why CBS Podcast

Those looking for an Ivy League perspective may be interested in the Why CBS Podcast, a series for Columbia Business School hosted by Fahad Ahmed, a 2017 graduate of the program. Why CBS features interviews with students, faculty, and alumni who speak candidly about their MBA experience at Columbia, as well as the time leading up to the program and their lives and careers after graduation. Why CBS is currently available on the iTunes Store.

Wharton FinTech Podcast

MBA students at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School have been producing their own podcast, FinTech, since 2015, one of the earliest examples of this fairly recent trend. Boasting a back catalog of almost 50 episodes, this prolific podcast focuses specifically on global financial services, featuring diverse perspectives from CEOs, investors, students, and researchers. This “informative and high caliber” podcast is well-liked by its listeners, offering “a great source of insight into the minds of the founders, investors, and leaders in financial technology,” according to one user review.

Berkeley-Haas Podcasts

While they do not produce a serial podcast like many others, UC Berkeley’s Haas School offers a variety of podcasts and webinars on its website, including several produced by the admissions staff that provide a wealth of information for prospective applicants. There’s a series on financing your MBA, another series of webinars featuring current students discussing the school’s various areas of emphasis, and a third three-part series by Stephanie Fujii, the former executive director of the full-time MBA program, focusing specifically on what the school looks for in its applicants and how best to prepare for your application process.

There’s also a Humans of Haas Podcast produced by students in the full-time MBA program, though most seem to have graduated last year and it’s unclear whether anyone has taken up the reins to continue the podcast going forward. But there are four episodes available on Soundcloud that are worth checking out if you want to get a feel for the school’s students and culture. Each episode focuses on a specific theme and their titles include “Love at Haas,” “Vets at Haas,” “The Politics of Hair,” and  “But Where Are You Really From?”

University of Chicago Booth School of Business Podcast

Also of note is the Chicago Booth Podcast Series. This production interviews a variety of CEOs, faculty, and other experienced professionals on a wide array of topics related to current and historical trends in business and finance. Selected archived episodes are available to stream for free on the school website and include diverse topics such as gender and the pay gap, interviews with important historical figures in business, and research on fiscal and monetary legal policy.

These are just a few examples of the many podcasts out there being produced by students and graduates as well as more officially by the schools themselves. These types of podcasts offer a fresh alternative to the often noisy, polluted world of online business commentary and there’s likely a podcast out there devoted to almost any topic that a prospective or current MBA might be interested in learning about.

Posted in: Featured Home, News | 0 comments

Sep 1, 2017

A Recommendation Revolution Is Underway in MBA Admissions: What You Need to Know

MBA Recommendation Revolution

I’m busy, you’re busy, your boss is most definitely busy. Indeed, publications ranging from Men’s Health to the Atlantic, the Washington Post to Forbes are all reporting that “busyness“ has become the new status symbol for our times. Which is part of what makes asking someone to write you a letter of recommendation for business school so daunting. Now, try telling that person that you actually need five different letters for five different schools. Oy vey.

As uncomfortable a spot as it puts applicants in—it’s no better for recommenders. Even your most vociferous supporter is going to wonder what in the world she’s gotten herself into when she realizes that helping you in your pursuit of acceptance to business school means taking time away from work or play or family or whatever else to labor over leadership assessment grids, each a little different from the one before, and write 10 slightly different answers to 10 slightly different questions. Here’s hoping that your top-choice school doesn’t happen to be the last one she gets around to…

Good news. The graduate management education industry recognizes the strain that letters of recommendation put on applicants and recommenders alike and has been wrestling with ways to make the process easier for everyone involved. To this end, the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) established a committee made up of admissions representatives from dozens of leading business schools to brainstorm about ways to lessen the burden while still collecting the third-party assessments of candidates that are so critical to the MBA application process.

GMAC Pilots Common MBA Letter of Recommendation

As an outgrowth of that committee’s work, GMAC last year piloted a common MBA letter of recommendation (LOR) that schools can choose to incorporate into their applications to reduce the burden placed on applicants and recommenders alike.

“The Common Letter of Recommendation (LOR) effort is intended to save you and recommenders valuable time by providing a single set of recommendation questions for each participating school,” reads the GMAC website. “This allows your recommenders to use the same answers for multiple letter submissions, alleviating the workload of having to answer different questions for each school multiple times. You benefit because it makes the ask for several different letters to be written on your behalf much easier.”

Cornell’s Johnson Graduate School of ManagementNYU Stern School of Business, and Michigan’s Ross School of Business were among the first schools to pilot the Common LOR last year. In addition to a single set of open-ended essay questions, the pilot Common LOR also included a leadership assessment grid inviting recommenders to rate applicants on 16 “competencies and character traits” grouped into four main categories of achievement, influence, personal qualities and academic ability.

“At Johnson, we saw the Common LoR as a clear opportunity to improve the admissions process for candidates and their recommenders in a way that would also add value to our own assessment of applicants,” Judi Byers, Johnson executive director of admissions & financial aid, told Clear Admit. “A thorough and consistent review is important to us and the grid provides a straightforward base of insights that can be assessed and compared reliably while the accompanying letter adds meaningful detail and context,” she added.

Soojin Kwon, managing director of full-time MBA admissions and program at Ross, sees applicants and recommenders as the main beneficiaries of the Common LOR and is pleased that more schools are coming on board. “As more schools adopt it, applicants won’t have to feel like they’re burdening their recommender with completing multiple rec letters with different questions and ratings grids,” she told Clear Admit. “This year, more than a dozen of the top 20 schools are using it.”

Ross was also among the schools to first pilot the Common LOR last year, and Kwon served as part of the GMAC committee that helped craft it.

Common Questions Easy to Agree on, Common Leadership Grid Not
“What we found in using the Common LOR this year past year was that the questions gave us helpful insights into applicants, particularly on the important area of constructive feedback. The questions, however, were fairly similar to what we and other schools were using before, so it was easy for the AdCom to use it,” she notes.

Those questions are as follow:

  • Please provide a brief description of your interaction with the applicant and, if applicable, the applicant’s role in your organization. (50 words)
  • How does the performance of the applicant compare to that of other well-qualified individuals in similar roles? (E.g. what are the applicant’s principal strengths?) (500 words)
  • Describe the most important piece of constructive feedback you have given the applicant. Please detail the circumstances and the applicant’s response. (500 words)
  • Is there anything else we should know? (Optional)

“The rating grid was quite different from what we’d used in the past,” Kwon continued. “It was also the most difficult part for the GMAC advisory group to develop and get agreement upon. The group worked this past year to revise and simplify the grid so that AdComs could get more meaningful insights from it.”

This year, the 16 competencies and character traits from the original grid have been distilled to 12, with specific questions about analytical thinking and information seeking omitted. Johnson and Ross have both incorporated the revised leadership grid into the LOR distributed to applicants as part of their applications, as have most other schools that have this year decided to incorporate both the grid and open-ended essay question portions of the form. UT’s McCombs School of Business and Rice University’s Jones Graduate School of Business, notably, still seem to feature the earlier version of the leadership grid in their application, the one that calls on recommenders to assesses applicants on 16 competencies and traits.

Posted in: Admissions Tips, Advice, Featured Home | 0 comments

Jul 14, 2017

Metro News & Notes: MBA Relevancy, Bad Business and more

MBA Relevancy

Good morning and happy Friday!

Here are a few stories you may have missed from the week that was …

Continue reading…

Posted in: Featured Home, MetroMBA Roundup, News | 0 comments

Feb 15, 2017

What Do You Need To Know When It Comes To Group MBA Interviews?

group MBA interviews

The goalposts for group MBA interviews are constantly shifting. For years, we at MetroMBA and Clear Admit, as well as other provincial publications, have been dishing out valuable advice for how to prepare for it. And for those familiar, one of the key points to remember is constantly being familiar with the changes.

Continue reading…

Posted in: Admissions Tips, Advice, Featured Home, News, Recommendations | 0 comments

Feb 13, 2017

Anxiety Persists for MBAs Despite Court Rebuke of Immigration Ban

Court's

Last week, a three-member panel of judges from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit refused the Trump administration’s call to reinstate a ban barring the entry of all refugees and visitors from seven predominantly Muslim countries into the United States. Although the case could still advance to the Supreme Court, yesterday’s ruling means that, for now, the executive order signed by President Donald Trump two weeks ago remains unenforceable.

That’s good news for international students from the affected countries, some of whom were detained at airports attempting to return to campus from overseas travel, others of whom were forced to cancel plans to leave the United States for fear they might not be allowed back in.

States Cite Harm to Higher Education as Major Reason for Opposing Ban

In affirming that the states of Washington and Minnesota had legal standing to bring the case against the immigration ban, the appellate judges specifically cited the ban’s injurious impact on the states’ public universities.

An excerpt from the ruling:

“Specifically, the States allege that the teaching and research missions of their universities are harmed by the Executive Order’s effect on their faculty and students who are nationals of the seven affected countries. These students and faculty cannot travel for research, academic collaboration, or for personal reasons, and their families abroad cannot visit. Some have been stranded outside the country, unable to return to the universities at all. The schools cannot consider attractive student candidates and cannot hire faculty from the seven affected countries, which they have done in the past.”

Citing the new court precedent, the judges argued that schools can assert the rights of their students. “The interests of the states’ universities here are aligned with the students. The students’ educational success is ‘inextricably bound up’ in the universities’ capacity to teach them,” the ruling says. “And the universities’ reputations depend on the success of their professors’ research.”

Of course, these concerns were not limited to public universities in the states of Washington and Minnesota. Indeed, as reported here, business schools around the nation were quick to decry the executive order on precisely those grounds. In the days immediately following Trump’s January 27 executive order, deans from Harvard Business School, UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business, the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, NYU Stern School of Business and Columbia Business School, among others, spoke out strongly in opposition to the immigration ban while pledging to support their own affected students.

Global Business Education Is Best Antidote to Economic Nationalism, Say Business School Deans

Earlier this week, the Global Network for Advanced Management, a group of 29 international business schools committed to advancing innovation through global exchange, issued a statement in opposition to the current rise of populism, economic nationalism and anti-globalization rhetoric, noting that the global economy is more interconnected than ever before, making global exchange and engagement more important than ever.

Excerpt from the Global Network letter:

“As deans of Global Network member schools, we recognize that the fundamental drivers of global business are not changing. Technology will continue to advance and disrupt markets and societies, and the transfer of innovations and expertise across borders will continue. We believe that countries that retrench will harm themselves and their citizens. Therefore, we redouble our commitment to collaborative learning across countries and cultures, and to gain and leverage the insights of the best and brightest throughout the world. In this way, we continue to improve educational outcomes and professional development of our students, deliver innovations that benefit business and society, and contribute to a better world.”

This letter carried the signatures of deans from Haas, HEC Paris, INSEAD, Oxford’s Saïd Business School and Yale School of Management, among many others.

In the wake of the executive order, Haas Dean Richard Lyons received a letter signed by more than 1,000 Haas MBA students requesting that he reach out to deans of other business schools to speak out jointly against the executive order. He responded early last week to the Haas community that he had done just that.

Heightened Anxiety Persists

Despite yesterday’s ruling, business schools have encouraged their international students to exercise caution with regard to planned travel outside of the United States. “The temporary restraining order, which halted the enforcement of certain provisions of President Trump’s executive order banning foreign nationals from seven countries from entering the U.S., remains in effect after a decision by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals,” read a notice posted today on the Harvard International Office (HIO) website. “Despite this ruling, the HIO continues to advise foreign nationals from the seven restricted countries (Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen) to exercise caution and discuss any travel plans with their HIO Advisor when considering travel outside the United States.”

This is because future court rulings could reinstate the ban, in which case foreign nationals from those countries most likely would not be admitted or readmitted to the country.

Next Year’s International Enrollment at U.S. Business Schools in Question

It remains to be seen what type of impact this uncertainty may have on international enrollment at U.S. business school’s next year. As of this writing, most business schools we reached reported that, thus far, international application volume had not been impacted.

“International application volume in Round 2 was identical to last year,” says Haas Assistant Dean of the full-time MBA Program and Admissions Peter Johnson. “Since our Round 2 deadline was in early January, it was after the election and before the recent executive order. If there is any direct impact from these events, it will likely be seen in the enrollment patterns of admitted international students, in our program and in other MBA programs across the country.”

Concern about the current administration’s policies and their impact on international students has been widespread. “The uncertainty and anxiety surrounding changes in visa and immigration regulations is affecting all international students, not only those from the countries included in the recent executive order,” says Johnson. “We have had questions ranging from ‘Will this impact my chances of admission?’ to ‘Will I be able to do an internship in the U.S.?’”

Johnson confirmed that Haas has no plans to alter its admissions process and will continue to offer spaces in its class to top candidates regardless of their country of origin. “We are committed to maintaining a diverse and inclusive environment, and international students and faculty are an important part of our community and the educational experience of all students,” he pledged.

HBS Managing Director of Admissions and Financial Aid Chad Losee made a similar pledge in a post to his Director’s Blog earlier this week. In it, he reaffirmed the school’s commitment to assembling a diverse class of leaders who will make a difference in the world, wherever they come from. “The recent U.S. executive order restricting travel to America for citizens from certain countries does not change this, nor are we changing our admissions policy or practices as a result,” he wrote.

This article has been edited and republished with permissions from Clear Admit.

Posted in: Featured Home, News | 0 comments

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