The sad truth about scholarships


Duncan
Lots of candidates ask about financial aid. Ideally, they want to get a world-class MBA for free. Here are a few simple admonitions. The basic point is: Generally scholarships are used to attract the sort of candidates who bring more to the cohort than the average member of the cohort. So, to get a scholarship, you'll need to look at schools that are far below the schools we are talking about.

- Scholarships cost you money in the long run if they influence your choice of school. It's most likely that you'll get a larger scholarship from a school that's much worse than the best school that will accept you. As a special rule of thumb, it's important to understand in particular that accepting a full waiver from a school you would not otherwise attend comes at a high cost: typically it will bring you to a school that's less good than the one you would have had to pay for, so the opportunity cost can be quite high.

- Scholarships are for strong candidates, especially the larger scholarships. Schools generally use scholarships to attract candidates who, otherwise, might attend better schools and who fit the school's recruiting companies. Top schools generally don't need to offer *full* waivers to attract those students.

- It is possible, but it's not common, to get full scholarships. It's not realistic to expect one. A friend of mine got a full waiver and, to give context, she had a PhD in economics from the top university in in one of the BRICS countries, had competed at the Olympic level (in a sport that interested this university), and had a successful career in market research. She would have gone to INSEAD if the school had not waived the tuition.

- Not all schools have substantial funds for scholarships. To get a scholarship in the US, for example, aim for rich, private universities where you are well above the average. Don't expect public, state universities to have big scholarship funds.

PS Most scholarships are small, and don't cover most of the tuition cost let alone living costs.

[Edited by Duncan on Jan 12, 2016]

Lots of candidates ask about financial aid. Ideally, they want to get a world-class MBA for free. Here are a few simple admonitions. The basic point is: Generally scholarships are used to attract the sort of candidates who bring more to the cohort than the average member of the cohort. So, to get a scholarship, you'll need to look at schools that are far below the schools we are talking about.

- Scholarships cost you money in the long run if they influence your choice of school. It's most likely that you'll get a larger scholarship from a school that's much worse than the best school that will accept you. As a special rule of thumb, it's important to understand in particular that accepting a full waiver from a school you would not otherwise attend comes at a high cost: typically it will bring you to a school that's less good than the one you would have had to pay for, so the opportunity cost can be quite high.

- Scholarships are for strong candidates, especially the larger scholarships. Schools generally use scholarships to attract candidates who, otherwise, might attend better schools and who fit the school's recruiting companies. Top schools generally don't need to offer *full* waivers to attract those students.

- It is possible, but it's not common, to get full scholarships. It's not realistic to expect one. A friend of mine got a full waiver and, to give context, she had a PhD in economics from the top university in in one of the BRICS countries, had competed at the Olympic level (in a sport that interested this university), and had a successful career in market research. She would have gone to INSEAD if the school had not waived the tuition.

- Not all schools have substantial funds for scholarships. To get a scholarship in the US, for example, aim for rich, private universities where you are well above the average. Don't expect public, state universities to have big scholarship funds.

PS Most scholarships are small, and don't cover most of the tuition cost let alone living costs.
quote
davidsmart
Thank you Mr Duncan for a great insight.

By the way I heard that Hult is offering substantial scholarship to almost everyone who applies by a set deadline.
Thank you Mr Duncan for a great insight.

By the way I heard that Hult is offering substantial scholarship to almost everyone who applies by a set deadline.
quote
Duncan
;-) I think there's a general point about private sector schools like Hult, IE and schools with elements of that culture (maybe TiasNimbas is a good example). They use pricing like hotels and airlines: almost no-one pays the full price; almost everyone feels special because they have a time-limited discount. That's smart consumer psychology, but it's also manipulative. I prefer the traditional universities, where you know that the price in the brochure is the real price, and that scholarships really are used to improve the cohort rather than get people to sign over deposit cheques.

There's also a more specific point about Hult: I never heard of anyone being turned down by Hult.
;-) I think there's a general point about private sector schools like Hult, IE and schools with elements of that culture (maybe TiasNimbas is a good example). They use pricing like hotels and airlines: almost no-one pays the full price; almost everyone feels special because they have a time-limited discount. That's smart consumer psychology, but it's also manipulative. I prefer the traditional universities, where you know that the price in the brochure is the real price, and that scholarships really are used to improve the cohort rather than get people to sign over deposit cheques.

There's also a more specific point about Hult: I never heard of anyone being turned down by Hult.
quote
cgomez
I think that another option to not receiving scholarships is applying for a Graduate Assistantship. Personally, this has helped me tremendously with the cost of my MBA at my current school.
I think that another option to not receiving scholarships is applying for a Graduate Assistantship. Personally, this has helped me tremendously with the cost of my MBA at my current school.
quote
saroo
I think that another option to not receiving scholarships is applying for a Graduate Assistantship. Personally, this has helped me tremendously with the cost of my MBA at my current school.


wht is the meanings of graduate assistant ship
<blockquote>I think that another option to not receiving scholarships is applying for a Graduate Assistantship. Personally, this has helped me tremendously with the cost of my MBA at my current school. </blockquote>

wht is the meanings of graduate assistant ship
quote
Duncan
The top page on Google: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graduate_assistant
The top page on Google: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graduate_assistant
quote
Duncan
To find graduate assistantships, look on the admissions pages of websites. They will probably mention it as a kind of financial aid. Google is your friend: https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=site%3A.edu+MBA+%22graduate+assistantship%22&oq=site%3A.edu+MBA+%22graduate+assistantship%22&aqs=chrome..69i57j69i58.19794j0j4&sourceid=chrome&espv=210&es_sm=91&ie=UTF-8

These are generally very large state universities.
To find graduate assistantships, look on the admissions pages of websites. They will probably mention it as a kind of financial aid. Google is your friend: https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=site%3A.edu+MBA+%22graduate+assistantship%22&oq=site%3A.edu+MBA+%22graduate+assistantship%22&aqs=chrome..69i57j69i58.19794j0j4&sourceid=chrome&espv=210&es_sm=91&ie=UTF-8

These are generally very large state universities.
quote
Hello Duncan
First of all thanks for all your posts.
They have been really very helpful and it's a very noble job you are doing for people like us who are confused about which colleges to target seeing the diversity in the requirements of each university.

Coming to my query,
I fall in the most common profile of applicants, hence i would like to know what else could i do(Co-curricular, a specific list would be preferable ) , to improve my profile to an extent , where i could think about targeting some tier-2 colleges suggested by you.

My Profile is as Follows:
Male
Indian
Working as Sr. Systems Engineer with Infosys Technologies Limited.
Work Ex. : 3.5 yrs.
Target : GMAT 2015 spring fall.
Country : USA.

Warm Regards.
Prashant Thakur
Hello Duncan
First of all thanks for all your posts.
They have been really very helpful and it's a very noble job you are doing for people like us who are confused about which colleges to target seeing the diversity in the requirements of each university.

Coming to my query,
I fall in the most common profile of applicants, hence i would like to know what else could i do(Co-curricular, a specific list would be preferable ) , to improve my profile to an extent , where i could think about targeting some tier-2 colleges suggested by you.

My Profile is as Follows:
Male
Indian
Working as Sr. Systems Engineer with Infosys Technologies Limited.
Work Ex. : 3.5 yrs.
Target : GMAT 2015 spring fall.
Country : USA.

Warm Regards.
Prashant Thakur
quote
Duncan
That question has a book-length answer and, luckily, such books are plentiful. There are lot of great books on MBA admissions (libraries are great at getting books, so you don't even need to buy them. I often recommend Balbir Guru and Sara Strafino's book: http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-MBA-Admissions-Handbook-Everything/dp/1844554228

There are lot of things that schools look for in candidates, and they work really hard to outline them clearly in the materials. It's really not so hard.
That question has a book-length answer and, luckily, such books are plentiful. There are lot of great books on MBA admissions (libraries are great at getting books, so you don't even need to buy them. I often recommend Balbir Guru and Sara Strafino's book: http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-MBA-Admissions-Handbook-Everything/dp/1844554228

There are lot of things that schools look for in candidates, and they work really hard to outline them clearly in the materials. It's really not so hard.
quote
That question has a book-length answer and, luckily, such books are plentiful. There are lot of great books on MBA admissions (libraries are great at getting books, so you don't even need to buy them. I often recommend Balbir Guru and Sara Strafino's book: http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-MBA-Admissions-Handbook-Everything/dp/1844554228

There are lot of things that schools look for in candidates, and they work really hard to outline them clearly in the materials. It's really not so hard.


Hello Duncan
Thanks for your prompt reply.
As of now, the book suggested by you, is not available online in India (i checked at amazon india and ebay), so i'll have to wait till it becomes available . :(
In the mean time i'll be starting my preparations for GMAT.
I wanted your expert advice regarding the study material i should refer to (owing to its vast availability).
I am planning to go with "The Official Guide for GMAT Review" But I also wanted to know the worth of the online materials availble .Are they worth spending the amount they claim?
If so , which one would you suggest.
Owing to a middle class family this question is relevant for me as GMAT will already require huge investments and i want to save as much as i can.
Please feel free to suggest any other relevant information that you think i am missing.
Thanks in advance.

Warm Regards.
Prashant Thakur
<blockquote>That question has a book-length answer and, luckily, such books are plentiful. There are lot of great books on MBA admissions (libraries are great at getting books, so you don't even need to buy them. I often recommend Balbir Guru and Sara Strafino's book: http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-MBA-Admissions-Handbook-Everything/dp/1844554228

There are lot of things that schools look for in candidates, and they work really hard to outline them clearly in the materials. It's really not so hard.</blockquote>

Hello Duncan
Thanks for your prompt reply.
As of now, the book suggested by you, is not available online in India (i checked at amazon india and ebay), so i'll have to wait till it becomes available . :(
In the mean time i'll be starting my preparations for GMAT.
I wanted your expert advice regarding the study material i should refer to (owing to its vast availability).
I am planning to go with "The Official Guide for GMAT Review" But I also wanted to know the worth of the online materials availble .Are they worth spending the amount they claim?
If so , which one would you suggest.
Owing to a middle class family this question is relevant for me as GMAT will already require huge investments and i want to save as much as i can.
Please feel free to suggest any other relevant information that you think i am missing.
Thanks in advance.

Warm Regards.
Prashant Thakur
quote
Duncan
There are lots of great GMAT materials. It's hard to go wrong. Personally, I used the Barons book with a CD.
There are lots of great GMAT materials. It's hard to go wrong. Personally, I used the Barons book with a CD.
quote
There are lots of great GMAT materials. It's hard to go wrong. Personally, I used the Barons book with a CD.


Thanks a lot !!
Really appreciate all your help.
<blockquote>There are lots of great GMAT materials. It's hard to go wrong. Personally, I used the Barons book with a CD.</blockquote>

Thanks a lot !!
Really appreciate all your help.
quote
Just to confirm my suspicions: I've been offered a generous scholarship to an MBA program. Does this mean that I basically didn't aim high enough? Should I apply to better ranked schools to see if I can get in?
Just to confirm my suspicions: I've been offered a generous scholarship to an MBA program. Does this mean that I basically didn't aim high enough? Should I apply to better ranked schools to see if I can get in?
quote
Ayon
Just to confirm my suspicions: I've been offered a generous scholarship to an MBA program. Does this mean that I basically didn't aim high enough? Should I apply to better ranked schools to see if I can get in?

Yes. Aim higher.
[quote]Just to confirm my suspicions: I've been offered a generous scholarship to an MBA program. Does this mean that I basically didn't aim high enough? Should I apply to better ranked schools to see if I can get in?[/quote]
Yes. Aim higher.
quote
mba hipste...
You can also use that scholarship info as leverage to get better offers at the other schools you've been admitted to. "School xxx is offering me $xx,xxx, what can you do?"
You can also use that scholarship info as leverage to get better offers at the other schools you've been admitted to. "School xxx is offering me $xx,xxx, what can you do?"
quote
I like this idea, it's like negotiation. :)
I like this idea, it's like negotiation. :)
quote

Reply to Post

Related Business Schools

Madrid, Spain 98 Followers 340 Discussions
Fontainebleau, France 60 Followers 277 Discussions
Cambridge, Massachusetts 27 Followers 151 Discussions

Related Articles

MBA Scholarships for International Students in the US

May 07, 2018

A round-up of MBA funding options for international students studying in the US

MBA Full-Tuition Scholarships: Myth or Reality?

Mar 08, 2018

Full-tuition scholarships are considered the holy grail of MBA program funding. But how many actually exist and what do you have to do to get one?

How to Get an MBA Scholarship

Dec 22, 2015

Some tips on how to increase your chances for getting more money

Tracking Down the Funds: How to Pay for Your MBA

Oct 18, 2013

An MBA is expensive. Here are some tips for getting the money together to do one.

More Articles

Related Top 10 Lists

More Top 10 Lists

Hot Discussions