Today is the first day of classes for my MBA program, and I couldn’t be more excited! As I prepare for the next two years ahead, I think of all the effort and research it took to get to this point. For those who don’t know, I’ll be pursuing my MBA online through Prairie View A&M. Before deciding on a program, I spent months doing research and ultimately chose a program that is 100 percent online. I chose Prairie View because it was the best fit for my lifestyle right now.
If you are considering going to grad school and looking for an MBA program that fits you, here are a few things you should consider.
The most important thing is to find an institution that offers the degree you want. Many people like to get their MBA with a concentration. However, not all schools offer MBAs with specific concentrations. So, before doing too much research, make sure the school you are looking at offers the degree you want to help you get the career you want.
One of the first things I considered while looking at MBA programs was cost. My degree is something that I’ll be paying for myself. So, I wanted to find a program that was affordable for me. I’m a firm believer in living within your means, and as much as I want my MBA, I also don’t want to be paying for it for the next 20 years. There are tons of great, affordable MBA options out there. You don’t have to go to an expensive college for a great experience. A simple Google search can help you find affordable degree programs that fit your budget.
A program that offered flexibility was a MUST for me. Between working full-time, blogging and everything else, I needed a program that I could comfortably fit into my schedule. There are MBA programs offered in NYC that can be taken in a classroom, but I didn’t want to go to any of the schools in the city for various reasons. I also didn’t want to have to worry about rushing from work to get to class. By taking classes online, I’m able to plan ahead and work at my own pace.
Every person learns different, has different study habits and need/expect different things out of a learning experience. Some people just aren’t online students and value a classroom experience with face to face interaction. Others, value the flexibility and ability to learn at their own pace that comes along with eCourses. When considering program options, it’s important to know yourself and know your learning style. I’ve taken a few online classes during undergrad and did great. The only issue I had then is remembering when my assignments were due. Knowing this, I’ve come up with a plan and schedule to ensure all my assignments and tests are completed on time.
Accreditation has always been a huge thing for me. It was important during undergrad and still remains a key factor when it comes to education. My undergraduate business school was AACSB accredited. So, I wanted to find a grad school that held the same accreditation. This was definitely a personal preference. There are many business school accreditations, but the AACSB (or Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business) is known as the highest level of accreditation for business schools – with only 25 percent of business schools achieving this. As I stated before, this is definitely a personal preference and not a deciding factor for everyone.
As you can see, MBAs are not one size fits all. There are tons of great programs out there. All it takes is a little research. I would not recommend applying without doing your due diligence. These are only a few of the factors that went into making my decision. At the end of the day, this is an investment and you want to make sure you are getting the best experience possible.
Are you thinking about going to graduate school? Leave your questions for me below and let’s chat in the comments. Be sure to follow me on Instagram to keep up with my journey.