FTMBA '21 - Lancaster vs. Strathclyde vs. Cranfield


Vivi

Hello!

I applied a little later than most people so I missed out on opportunities to apply to most ranked schools this year. In addition to these 3 schools, I've applied to Warwick and Imperial without a GMAT for now. I took one last month but scored really low so I plan to take it again on 15th June. It would be my second attempt. Warwick and Imperial emailed me and said that I need to get 700+ in my GMAT to be a competitive applicant. I'm not sure if I can score that much in June. They both evaluated my profile based on my CV and said that I will get past the first round.

I have worked for ~5 years in the human rights sector in different roles in India. I've led a team for a prominent policymaker in India. I've worked with international NGOs. I worked for a think tank in Washington D.C. for a summer. In my current role, I lead a non-profit I founded in 2018. I decided to get an MBA degree in hoping that it would help me make a smooth transition into a new role, new industry and in a new country.

I would like to move into the Tech industry in a Strategic Partnership or Business Development role. A Business Strategy Consultant also fits the role I see myself in.

Scholarship is an important factor in my decision but if I'm convinced that a particular school is significantly better, even in the absence of financial support from the school, then I'd be happy to take a chance with my finances.

I would appreciate your thoughts on the following schools for the September 21 intake:

1. Lancaster: I like the 3 consulting challenges in the curriculum. It would a good addition to my resume and show employers that I have demonstrable foundational knowledge to transition into the private sector or generally, into the business world. They gave me about 50% tuition scholarship and that definitely earns them extra points. But they are falling out of rankings like FT (or have they completely fallen and I'm not aware of it?) and I'm concerned if that would somehow affect my job search given that I'll be making a triple jump. I saw the weighted salary of their alums fell by $10k in 2018 which could be alarming. But then again, I don't think I've done enough research to thoroughly understand the biases with FT's statistical calculations. What does everyone think?

2. Strathclyde: They seem to have a pretty general curriculum. Nothing really stands out to me in terms of curriculum or course structure. I do like that it is in Glasgow. No scholarship from this school. FT rankings are okay.

3. Cranfield: Other MBA aspirants I've talked to seem to prefer Cranfield over the other two on grounds that they have better curriculum. I don't see how their curriculum is better on the sole reason that they have 1 independent project/ consulting project at the end of the course and that seems to be as experiential as it gets. No scholarship from the school. They seem to do better in the rankings than the other 2 schools.

I'd appreciate your thoughts on the schools given the factors I have to take into account in my decision.

Hello!

I applied a little later than most people so I missed out on opportunities to apply to most ranked schools this year. In addition to these 3 schools, I've applied to Warwick and Imperial without a GMAT for now. I took one last month but scored really low so I plan to take it again on 15th June. It would be my second attempt. Warwick and Imperial emailed me and said that I need to get 700+ in my GMAT to be a competitive applicant. I'm not sure if I can score that much in June. They both evaluated my profile based on my CV and said that I will get past the first round.

I have worked for ~5 years in the human rights sector in different roles in India. I've led a team for a prominent policymaker in India. I've worked with international NGOs. I worked for a think tank in Washington D.C. for a summer. In my current role, I lead a non-profit I founded in 2018. I decided to get an MBA degree in hoping that it would help me make a smooth transition into a new role, new industry and in a new country.

I would like to move into the Tech industry in a Strategic Partnership or Business Development role. A Business Strategy Consultant also fits the role I see myself in.

Scholarship is an important factor in my decision but if I'm convinced that a particular school is significantly better, even in the absence of financial support from the school, then I'd be happy to take a chance with my finances.

I would appreciate your thoughts on the following schools for the September 21 intake:

1. Lancaster: I like the 3 consulting challenges in the curriculum. It would a good addition to my resume and show employers that I have demonstrable foundational knowledge to transition into the private sector or generally, into the business world. They gave me about 50% tuition scholarship and that definitely earns them extra points. But they are falling out of rankings like FT (or have they completely fallen and I'm not aware of it?) and I'm concerned if that would somehow affect my job search given that I'll be making a triple jump. I saw the weighted salary of their alums fell by $10k in 2018 which could be alarming. But then again, I don't think I've done enough research to thoroughly understand the biases with FT's statistical calculations. What does everyone think?

2. Strathclyde: They seem to have a pretty general curriculum. Nothing really stands out to me in terms of curriculum or course structure. I do like that it is in Glasgow. No scholarship from this school. FT rankings are okay.

3. Cranfield: Other MBA aspirants I've talked to seem to prefer Cranfield over the other two on grounds that they have better curriculum. I don't see how their curriculum is better on the sole reason that they have 1 independent project/ consulting project at the end of the course and that seems to be as experiential as it gets. No scholarship from the school. They seem to do better in the rankings than the other 2 schools.

I'd appreciate your thoughts on the schools given the factors I have to take into account in my decision.
quote
Duncan

These are close enough that you should look at their fit with your goals. Look at jobs in LinkedIn: what actually existing roles are most like the roles you want, and which school places best into that sector? 

These are close enough that you should look at their fit with your goals. Look at jobs in LinkedIn: what actually existing roles are most like the roles you want, and which school places best into that sector? 
quote
Vivi

Thank you, Duncan! Using the steps you've mentioned in one of your post, I used LinkedIn to search alums in similar roles and sector and I also literally just googled them. I do not have premium and my network isn't big so these could be influencing the outcome. I am not impressed with the results I got. Most of the Lancaster MBA alumni don't list their current jobs which strikes as odd to me. They were all active and have updated profile up until the year of graduation from LUMS and then nothing. Cranfield places mainly in banking and supply chain and a bit in consulting. Strathclyde mainly places experienced students in entry roles in consulting. I did not find much alums in a similar role in the tech industry in any of the schools.
How reliable is the FT ranking in terms of mobility for international students? I spoke to a recent graduate from Warwick who has similar work experiences and is also from the same country. She told me that about 50% of the 2020 cohort is yet to find a job and she was disappointed in the lack of help from Career Services. Although I dread the thought of being stuck in the sector I'm currently in for another year, I'm beginning to entertain the thought of re-applying to better schools next intake. What would you advise?

Thank you, Duncan! Using the steps you've mentioned in one of your post, I used LinkedIn to search alums in similar roles and sector and I also literally just googled them. I do not have premium and my network isn't big so these could be influencing the outcome. I am not impressed with the results I got. Most of the Lancaster MBA alumni don't list their current jobs which strikes as odd to me. They were all active and have updated profile up until the year of graduation from LUMS and then nothing.&nbsp;Cranfield places mainly in banking and supply chain and a bit in consulting. Strathclyde mainly places experienced students in entry roles in consulting. I did not find much alums in a similar role in the tech industry in any of the schools.<br>How reliable is the FT ranking in terms of mobility for international students? I spoke to a recent graduate from Warwick who has similar work experiences and is also from the same country. She told me that about 50% of the 2020 cohort is yet to find a job and she was disappointed in the lack of help from Career Services. Although I dread the thought of being stuck in the sector I'm currently in for another year, I'm beginning to entertain the thought of re-applying to better schools next intake. What would you advise?
quote
Duncan

You should get LinkedIn premium. If you search for #LinkedInPremium you will find people giving it away. 



The FT data are reliable for the year in which they were collected, and that might not be the same performance every year. Since your career goals are not very precise, I think an extra year will help you to do more personal networking to better understand the options and get into a better school.... but that depends on your opportunity coist. 

[Edited by Duncan on Jun 01, 2021]

You should get LinkedIn premium. If you search for #LinkedInPremium you will find people giving it away.&nbsp;<br><br><br><br>The FT data are reliable for the year in which they were collected, and that might not be the same performance every year. Since your career goals are not very precise, I think an extra year will help you to do more personal networking to better understand the options and get into a better school.... but that depends on your opportunity coist.&nbsp;
quote
Duncan

Warwick's career services are well above average. Can you think of any macroeconomic reasons why the class of 2020 might have struggled? 

If you want more assurance of placement in this weird time in the UK, aim for the schools with higher salaries : LBS, Oxbridge, Bayes and Manchester. 

[Edited by Duncan on Jun 01, 2021]

Warwick's career services are well above average. Can you think of any macroeconomic reasons why the class of 2020 might have struggled?&nbsp;<br><br>If you want more assurance of placement in this weird time in the UK, aim for the schools with higher salaries [i.e. more valuable outputs]: LBS, Oxbridge, Bayes and Manchester.&nbsp;
quote

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