The following is a guest posting by Karen Schweitzer, from the About.com Guide to Business School.
Thank you, Karen, for a useful, quality posting!
Choosing the Best MBA Program
When it comes to MBA programs, brand power counts. This is especially true in an uncertain economy. Even in a recession, top business schools produce the most in-demand MBAs. These business schools have long-standing relationships with recruiters and established companies. They are able to go the extra mile to make sure their grads receive placement after graduation.
Stand-Out MBA Schools
There are a lot of good business schools with quality MBA programs. However, some are notably better than other, particularly when it comes to classroom experience and career prospects. Harvard Business School and the University of Chicago's Booth School of Business are both known for having top-notch instructors and robust career services. The Haas School of Business at the University of California--Berkeley also offers a high profile and the type of reputation that recruiters admire. Haas offers one-on-one advisement, mentoring programs, and access to exclusive job databases.
Other schools with strong reputations in MBA career placement and academic experience include the University of Virginia's Darden Graduate School of Business Administration and Dartmouth's Tuck School of Business. Darden has been hailed by many students as one of the toughest MBA programs in the world, but is also known for the amazing number of recruiting companies that troll the campus. Tuck has a full immersion MBA program that really prepares students for the working world. The school's career services are impressive as well. Tuck is a magnet for recruiters, and the school staff works tirelessly to make sure that every last grad lands the right job.
Of course, it isn't always necessary to find a business school with a national reputation. There are plenty of lesser known, regional schools that have excellent relationships with local employers and industries. In fact, there are some community employers that consider regional schools more prestigious than nationally ranked schools.
In the Northeast, Babson's School of Business and the University of Buffalo's School of Management have reputations that can't be beat. Babson is especially well-known for providing opportunities for women. Strong schools in the Mid-Atlantic include the University of Rochester's Simon School of Business and the College of William and Mary. Simon is a small school, but their placement record is excellent.
Good regional schools in the Midwest include Ohio State's Fisher College of Business and the University of Michigan's Ross School of Business. Both of these schools have a reputation for quickly placing MBA students. In the South, the best regional schools include the University of Florida's Warrington College of Business Administration and East Tennessee State University.
Reputable regional schools can also be found in the West and Southwest. Standout MBA programs include those at Thunderbird, Claremont, Acton, and the University of Denver. All four schools offer excellent preparation for the future as well as outstanding career placement records.
For the non-traditional student, an online MBA program may be the way to go. Online learning is losing the stigma it once had. Many employers have come to value the discipline it takes to earn an MBA degree online. In fact, there are a number of employers who recruit through online schools in addition to campus-based schools.
One of the most well known online programs is the frequently advertised University of Phoenix. This school, which offers both online programs and campus-based programs, provides a wide range of career services to help MBA grads find mentors, networking opportunities, and job leads. Another well-known online school is Kaplan University. Kaplan is a regionally accredited school that recently partnered with Newsweek to provide students with up-to-date topical content and case studies ripped right from the headlines. The school also offers an exemplary career services program that provides opportunities for students to meet and network with top industry executives online.
Guest post from Karen Schweitzer, the About.com Guide to Business School. Karen also writes for OnlineCollege.org, a site that specializes in online college information.
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