I'm typically nothing if not positive when it comes to dreaming about the MBA future that awaits us all. BUT there's a recent thread on the BusinessWeek forums which really has me thinking. It's from a current Top 5 MBA student (probably Kellogg or Booth) who is talking about how dire the recruiting situation is for both full-time and internship positions. He says that students outnumber internship postings by 2 to 1! That's insane. I know it's just one person's experience but I've heard similar stories and from my own research, a lot of students are giving similar accounts (though maybe not as soul-crushing).
This begs the question. Is the MBA worth it? I've adamantly resolved that the MBA is the next phase of my life no matter what. I'm going to do this regardless of the job situation. But if I take off my blinders for a second, I can't help but wonder if the $175,000 (my personal calculation for CBS) for 2 years is worth it if it won't yield my dream job. Granted I don't know what my dream job is but I want to be able to get it once I determine that obviously. Yes, the experience and education and personal development and network will be worth it. But if internship recruiting is so dire now, how will it be in the fall when I start myself? Probably not much better. A lot of analyts expect the economy to start rebounding around Quarter 3 of 2009 but that might be a bit too optimistic. I always told myself that we'll be recovering (at the very least) by graduation in May 2011 but the reality is that I need to prepare much sooner. In fact, I believe Columbia recruiting events start within weeks of getting on campus aka September 2009! Ay carumba.
Perhaps there's a silver lining. Maybe the lack of a super attractive full-time job option will force me to dive into my entrepreneurial idea head-first. That's a good thing. But I originally wanted to ease into that venture while I worked a normal corporate job, preferrably as a trader at a big bank (so I think currently). I realize that no trading jobs are out there right now. I believe I have a decent shot of getting one of the few ones that pop up by graduation since I have experience as a trading assistant but I feel like I need the internship too. Ugh, maybe I should stop stressing.
In other words, I have submitted my Kroll application and it's MUCH simpler than originally anticipated. It's different for each school (I believe they can customize what info to check) but Columbia asks for the bare bones. CBS' Kroll app asked for my current job, recommender info, undergrad info, and biographic info. It did NOT ask me about extra curriculars or past jobs or anything I wrote in essays. This should be a relief to some. I did not get an official "passed" yet but I fully expect to receive one.
On another note, I received a voicemail from Linda Meehan, the Director of CBS MBA Admissions, this week congratulating me on my admit. I'm kinda sad it took her this long to get to me considering I was probably one of the first 10 apps in their pile this season but it's cool. I'm sadder that I didn't get to pick up the call myself. Oh, and other sad news: my trip to Greece is off though I will probably still go to Morocco. San Fran is coming up in the next month or two too.
Alright, I'm going to run to the gym so I can dunk on some freshmen. And by "dunk", I mean shoot mid-range jumpers. I'm meeting 2 of my future classmates (whom I've already met a couple times) in the DC area for dinner afterwards. Tex-mex or pub grub?