When I decided I wanted to get my MBA I really jumped in with two feet. Everything moved quickly but I did make sure that my five biggest concerns in choosing an MBA program were mulled over.
Choosing an MBA Program
For me, the biggest concerns were location, cost, curriculum and class offerings and overall feel. I ended up choosing (and graduating from) Salem State University because it was the one option that fit my lifestyle the best.
When it came to location I knew I had two options – close to home or in Boston. Both had their benefits. Boston has countless schools with MBA programs for both full and part time students and focuses galore! This would however mean commuting into the city after work (before I worked in the city) or staying in the city after work. I also considered that there would be group project which may require trips into the city on weekends.
I came to the conclusion that a school on the near home (there were two I was considering) would be better for me. SSU won out on this front because it was the cheaper of the two options. Which leads me to my next big concern…
Cost was a big deal for me. When I started my program I was in a lower paying job that did not offer tuition help or reimbursement. I knew I would be paying a large chunk out of pocket then taking out a loan if need be (luckily I never needed to). Grad school is expensive. Books are expensive. Other fees and miscellaneous costs are expensive.
I felt comfortable in my decision to attend Salem State because their costs were more affordable for me than schools in Boston or even other schools on the north shore. I was lucky to briefly take a job that ended up paying for 3 of my classes even though I only worked there for 5 months. Five months was about all I could take!
Curriculum and Class Offerings
When I started my program I had no idea what I was going to focus on. SSU does not make you choose a focus but offers a few to choose from. Their curriculum offers foundation courses, core course and wide variety of electives. After taking all of the foundation courses and a few of the core courses I realized I loved marketing and chose to take 3 marketing electives to round out my studies.
My program was geared towards individuals who work and are earning their degree on a part time basis. I was however considered a full time student for a few semesters! All but one of my classes were offered at night to make it possible to have a full time job and still be able to get to class on time.
You know how if something isn’t right you just know it? I never got that feeling with SSU. From taking classes pre-matriculation to meeting with the MBA coordinator to schedule my classes to spending numerous hours in the library, SSU just felt right.
Looking back, I am glad this journey is over but if I had to do it again, I wouldn’t change a thing. I am very happy with the school and the program I chose because it work for me and my life. Is it right for everyone, no way. But do as I say and not as I do…and I say choose a school that works for you in terms of location, cost, curriculum and overall feel.
Other MBA Related Posts: