MBA and other Business Degrees

MBA (Master of Business Administration) is one of the most coveted degrees. Unlike MS or PhD, MBA is a fixed duration and structured degree program. MBA at a US University takes 1.5 to 2 years.


A 4 year undergraduate degree is required. However some programs may consider applicants with 3 years of degree. US B-Schools prefer candidates with at least two years of full-time work experience. But there is a recent trend to consider applicants fresh out of college too. There is less emphasis on academic record and more on well-rounded personality, leadership roles and community service.

MBA funding scene as compared to funding for MS programs

Barring a small number of scholarships, MBA programs are not funded by the Universities. To understand this you need to understand the root cause. US Universities do not tend to fund coursework only degrees. Even MS students enrolled in coursework only degrees are not funded. PhD and MS students are funded due to their research output or least a hope of reaserch output. If students publish papers, the reputation and ranking of Universities goes up. Coursework only students add no value to a University in terms of research productivity.

Diversity Vs Equal Opportunity

MS and PhD admissions are more marit based. If all top applicants are from China or India, they may admit all from China and India. In case of MBA programs, if top 20 candidates in terms of academic record and GMAT scores are from India and China two or four may get admitted. They would rather admit students from different countries, professions, socio economic backgrounds for the sake of diversity. It is a great idea because in MBA programs you learn from the experiences of your peers. But on the flipside, competition becomes unfairly intense if you are of a certain ethnicity, citizenship, gender and academic background. Tough luck for Indian male software professionals!

Salary expectations

Salaries in US are a lot based on individual capability and not like Stanford MBAs get paid xyz salary. A lot depends on your past experiences, sector and luck. One should not apply to US Universities for MBA or other program with a sole aim of getting a $100K job in USA. Salaries vary and there could be other factors in the future including economic slowdown, visa shortage, etc. Make sure you have a willingness to work in Europe, China wherever opportunities may exist two - three years from now.

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