How To Select The Right B-School?

India today has more than 5500 MBA colleges. Needless to say that most of these colleges do not add any value to a student graduating from them. Some of these colleges spend heavily on advertising and create a false perception of education quality and placements. A study by ASSOCHAM said that only 7% of MBA graduates are employable and the rest earn less than INR 10k a month if they find placements.   A situation like this makes choosing the right B-School one of the most important decisions you will be making in your life. I have mentioned a few parameters that may help you in the process.

1)    Brand Value: This is one of the most important criteria while selecting a college. Usually, older colleges who have established themselves in the market have a higher brand value. However new ones like ISB are also as good as the older IIMs. Similarly, some new private colleges are also doing well.

2)    Placements: Do not get blinded by the average salary figures that colleges quote. The best way is to ask the current or former students. Only they can give you the accurate placement scenarios. If the college does not feature in Top 25 list, also ask for the number of students getting less than INR 6 lakhs annual package.

3)     ROI: Related to placements but slightly different. Do not think of an MBA as a short-term investment. It is something that will stay with you for the next forty years. A recognized college charging 20 lakhs fee should be preferred over a mediocre college charging 12 lakhs fee even though both may be providing the same kind of placements.

4)    Accreditation: Again a very important factor if you are planning on joining a new or not so established college. In the past, some colleges had been shut down by MHRD who were not affiliated as per the norms.

5)    Alumni Base: Last but not the least, the alumni base of a college speaks volumes about its quality. Alumni play an important role in the placements of a college. Older IIMs, FMS, XLRI have a huge alumni base to boast of which is aptly reflected in the placement reports of these colleges.

This list is not exhaustive by any means. Other parameters may also be considered based upon individual preferences. E.g. For students interested in entrepreneurship, certain colleges have tailored courses for the same. Similarly, certain candidates are interested in very niche courses like Retail Management or Healthcare Management. However, in any case, the point I am trying to make is to spend considerable time and effort in choosing the right b-school. Do not be swayed by the flashy posters and advertisements you see on the television. Make a wise choice!

samaksha vaish

Samaksha Vaish is a second year student at IIM Lucknow. He is also a member of the Industry Interaction Cell and Manjunath Shanmugam Trust.

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