Help Choosing an MBA Program

Discussion in 'Business and MBA degrees' started by mentis, Jun 7, 2014.

  1. mentis

    mentis New Member

    Hello all. I've been browsing this forum for the past few weeks trying to find a program right for me. While I've seen many different suggestions, I think my situation is unique enough to warrant its own post. Here's a bit of background about my situation:

    * Possess a BS in Management/Computer Information Systems from a little known regional college, but I graduated Summa Cum Laude. I was in the military at the time so I worked through the program in a hybrid of in-class and online.
    * Possess a MS in Computer Science from a very well known university. This was after I left the military and was well established in my career. I attended full time at the brick & mortar school during evenings after my job. It was at times grueling.
    * I have approximately 16 months left on a post-911 GI Bill.
    * I've never taken the GMAT and don't plan to. My GRE score (more than 5 years ago) seems too old to be accepted anywhere.

    I now find myself in my 30s and wanting to advance my career past middle management. The feedback I've received overwhelmingly from peers, directors, and C-level executives is to pursue an MBA. Unfortunately I don't think I can do another program where I have to attend in person, so I'd like to look online. I'd also ideally like to pay very little out of pocket. So basically I'm looking for the perfect sweet spot where a few things converge: fast delivery (between 12 - 18 months), able to be covered almost entirely by the GI Bill, entirely or mostly online, no GMAT, and AACSB accredited. I'm willing to compromise a bit on the AACSB portion as long as the program is from a decently well known school. I plan to stay in business so AACSB is not as big a deal as positive name recognition.

    I understand this is quite a long list of requirements, but I'd appreciate any feedback this forum might be able to provide. Some of the current programs I'm looking at are West Texas A&M, Texas A&M, Frostburg, Florida International, and Norwich. The Texas and West Texas A&M programs thus far seem closest to what I'm searching for. Anyone have any further thoughts or inputs?
  2. Ted Heiks

    Ted Heiks Moderator and Distinguished Senior Member Staff Member

    What would you like to major in? Any particular price range? You might want to peruse the MBA Sticky.
  3. njit

    njit New Member

    Take GMAT

    Mentis, If you can spend the $250 and a few weekends studying the official guides, take GMAT. Is no big deal and you can just study for a few weeks and take it. This will open the doors for you to apply to more schools. I have been accepted to AACSB B&M and Online schools such as NYU and UMass, but I will start at WGU next month.
  4. mentis

    mentis New Member

    No particular major. A generic MBA is fine.

    Price range is difficult for me to determine, and that's part of the reason I came here for help. As a veteran I have access to the post 911 GI Bill so that covers part or potentially all of the cost. What complicates things is some schools participate in the Yellow Ribbon program at different levels to cover any remaining balance. As an example there's a school in my area whose program costs around $40,000. The GI Bill will only cover around $19,000 of the cost, but the institution will cover any remaining balance as part of the Yellow Ribbon. This means some programs might look two or three times as much as competing schools but actually end up costing me nothing.

    I've look around on the MBA sticky and many of the programs I'm interested in came from there. I was hoping someone on here might have been in a similar situation as me and found a program that caters to all of these requirements. What's frustrating to me is some programs look great at first but as I get further into the pre-admissions/information gathering stage I find some flaw with the program that is a deal breaker.
  5. CavTrooper

    CavTrooper New Member

    I think you should look into online Executive MBA programs since they are typically accelerated, don't require the GMAT, and allow you to advance in your career with an MBA, albeit delivered in an executive format. Based on your experience and goals, I'd say you are a prime candidate for an EMBA. Check out Washington State University's EMBA (18 months, fully covered by the post-9/11 GI Bill, WSU has well ranked online programs), or George Mason University's EMBA (16 months of coursework, no GMAT if you have a master's, cohort format), or Rochester Institute of Technology's EMBA (15-17 month program, opening residency is required, cohort format, no GMAT required).

    An EMBA makes a lot of sense in your situation since you're trying to advance without necessarily making a complete career change.

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