Archive for May, 2012
Friday, May 25th, 2012
We get a lot of questions from prospective MBA applicants about alumni mentoring here in the Penn State Smeal MBA Program. It seems most individuals interested in business are aware of the benefits of having a mentor, especially when they are in graduate school. That relationship is one people look forward to having, and one that people expect to be facilitated in an MBA Program. What seems to be lacking some of the time, is the understanding that a mentor/mentee relationship is one that needs to be nurtured, worked on and prioritized. A true mentor is someone who knows you well. A mentor needs to understand your history, your goals, and your value system. Often the connection in this type of relationship is made based on at least one of those three things. Thus, it takes an investment of time and energy to build a successful relationship with a mentor. Meeting with an appointed person and discussing your resume do not immediately entitle either party to the benefits of a mentor/mentee relationship. An atmosphere of coaching, feedback and networking usually builds over time. Thus my recommendation to anyone out there looking for a mentor, but especially to those working on your MBA, is to dedicate some time and energy into building a great relationship with at least one mentor. The benefits will be numerous if you dedicate yourself to the opportunity.
Friday, May 18th, 2012
It’s summer in the Business Building. The 2nd years students have graduated and the 1st years are off starting their summer internships. It’s eerily quiet here in a building that is normally buzzing with students trying to get everything done. The building isn’t completely empty though, our staff remains, here to help in any way we can.
- Are you an incoming student with a question about your i20 or what type of laptop to purchase? Send us an email.
- Applying for the class of 2015 (our application will go live this August), and have a question about your application? Give us a call.
- Just trying to decide if a Smeal MBA is right for you at this time in your career? Schedule a visit to come see us in person.
Please feel free to ask us any questions you have, we look forward to helping you throughout the summer.
- Scott Sylves
Friday, May 11th, 2012
As some of our students prepare to leave campus for their internship, and new graduates get ready to take on new career challenges, MBA admissions is already in planning mode for the next admissions cycle. We have already seen inquiries from prospective students who are applying to start school in the fall of 2013 to become the class of 2015. If you are looking at getting a head start on your application for next year, here are some things you can do now:
1)Begin preparing for the GMAT. It may seem like you have plenty of time before our November deadline, but if you prepare and take the exam early in the process, you leave yourself plenty of time to test again if necessary. If the first score is what you want, you’ve also then given yourself some extra time to work on other parts of your application.
2)Narrow your top program choices into a short list. You may be interested in 20 programs, but realistically, you probably won’t wind up applying to more than about 6. Certainly this number varies by applicant, but keep in mind the application itself can be expensive. Choose wisely and make sure you really know which programs will be a good fit for you.
3)Begin looking at finances. If you haven’t already, get a good idea of how much your target programs cost and how much you will be able to afford. If you are hoping for merit-based aid from a program, you need to make sure your final applications are as competitive as possible.
4)Start thinking about themes for your essays. While each program will ask slightly different essay questions, as you do your research, notice some of the themes that will emerge (career goals, leadership experiences, etc.)
5)Check out the fall schedule for both MBA recruiting fairs AND for the specific programs you have interest in. Fairs can be helpful in identifying program choices that best fit you and your goals, but they shouldn’t be the only way you research programs. Lots of great MBA programs don’t make the full “fair circuit”. Additionally, most schools will soon post program-specific events including campus visit opportunities. Mark your calendar now so you can make sure you’ve put aside the appropriate amount of time for MBA-related events and campus visits.
While summer can be a great time to relax and enjoy the weather, it’s also a great time to put yourself ahead of the pack and get an early jump on b-school admission!
–Stacey Dorang Peeler