Business Administration

Masters In Business Administration admission requirements: What do top US universities expect?

Masters In Business Administration admission requirements: What do top US universities expect?

An MBA In The USA: Do You Have What It Takes?

It is no small accomplishment to even be accepted into an American B-school.

The reason?

It’s incredibly hard to get in, which is why acceptance to a US MBA is an achievement in and of itself.

Masters In Business Administration admission requirements: What do top US universities expect?

The Upfront Conclusion

Too much to do? 

No Problem — We are big believers in upfront conclusions.

Here are the things you will need to get your MBA in the USA as an international student:




Must Have or “Nice To Have” ?




A Bachelor’s Degree In Any Field

Must Have




Must Have, Ideally GMAT 600+ or GRE 320+



Letters Of Recommendation

Must Have, Not A Deal Breaker



Language Requirements (IELTS/ TOEFL)

Depends On University, Usually Must Have



Work Experience

Nice To Have, Certainly A Bonus



Extracurricular Activities (ECAs)

Nice To Have, Certainly A Bonus



A Statement Of Purpose

Nice To Have, Certainly A Bonus, Sometimes Compulsory.



A Valid Passport (with anywhere from 6 months to 2 years of remaining validity and anywhere from two to five empty pages)

Must Have. Also, the US has different rules for students from different countries regarding minimum remaining validity at the time of application.

An MBA In The USA: The Must Haves

If you are planning on pursuing your MBA in the USA, here are some non-negotiable entry requirements.

These are the bare minimum that top US universities expect from international students.


1. A Bachelor’s Degree

The What: Unlike most other postgraduate programs, for an MBA in the USA, a bachelor’s degree in any discipline is perfectly acceptable.

The Why: A bachelor’s degree is not “just a formality” — top US universities want your degree and transcript mainly to assess your academic compatibility for the course.

Additional Info: You will usually need all your transcripts, and ideally with a good average test score (think: 70%+). Two year bachelor’s degrees are usually not valid in the USA for an MBA.

International Bachelors degrees also sometimes need “accreditation”.

For example, the Zicklin College of Business at Baruch requires some international candidates to get their degrees attested from a NACES-approved agency.

Pro Tip: If you can get your transcripts (some places call these “marksheets”) on your college letterhead with the university stamp, it will help you a lot in the long run.

Also, check whether or not your chosen college needs degree accreditation — the simplest way to avoid a hassle here is to ask a representative.

GMAT/ GRE Scores


2. GMAT/ GRE Scores 

The What: At least one of these tests is compulsory for an MBA in the USA, with some exceptions. A good score to aim for is 600+ on the GMAT and 320+ on the GRE.

The Why: Educational systems around the world differ, which is where these tests come in. Being standardized (I.E. the same worldwide), these lt colleges know where a candidate stands on a global footing.

Additional Info: A lot of colleges, such as the NJIT Martin Tuchman School Of Management may waive the requirement in certain cases for an international student to have a GMAT or GRE score.

Pro Tip: “Is there any situation where the GMAT or GRE is not required for entry to the MBA program offered by [Insert College/ University Name Here]?”. Copy this message without the quotes and send it to the college you are researching.


3. Letters Of Recommendation 

The What: Most programs will ask for at least two letters of recommendation from you, preferably from teachers or colleagues.

The Why: Letters of recommendation show an admissions officer how a person acts and reacts, how he or she performs in a team, etc. 

A letter of recommendation usually also includes personal characteristics and strengths that wouldn’t otherwise come to light.

Additional Info: Even if you have, for example, worked with a family member, most top US universities reject letters of recommendation from family. 

This includes extended family members.

Pro Tip: The most valuable letter of recommendation will be from your immediate boss, immediate subordinate, immediate teacher, or immediate peer.


4. Language Requirements 

The What: Even if your mother tongue is English, most international students are required to demonstrate their English proficiency through either the IELTS or TOEFL.

The Why: A bachelor’s degree is not just a formality” top US universities want your degree and transcript mainly to assess your academic compatibility for the course.

Additional Info: An increasing number of Universities are also beginning to accept alternate methods of displaying English proficiency. 

For instance, the Brandeis International Business School accepts the Duolingo English Test and the Pearson Test For English (Academic) in addition to the TOEFL and IELTS.

Pro Tip: A lot of places will say that a minimum score of 100 (TOEFL) or 7.0 bands (IELTS) are required for an MBA in the USA, the tests are simply to prove you can communicate in the language; so — no pressure.

An MBA In The USA: The Nice To Haves

While not strictly necessary, they certainly go a long way.


1. Work Experience: 

The What: Self-explanatory, includes any internships/ mentorships you’ve done.

The Why: Even if you feel that your work experience is unrelated to your degree, it still is important. Top US Universities always give due weightage to work experience, especially for business programs.

Additional Info: Though not usually an official requirement, not having work experience can often be quite the deal breaker for top US universities.

For example, the Miami Herber Business School (#3 in the US, #15 worldwide) clearly says that “The program is ideal for candidates with an undergraduate degree in any field and three or more years of work experience…”.

And the University Of Maryland, College Park states clearly that their MBA class freshmen usually have at least five years’ work experience.

Pro Tip: Even if you do not currently have any work experience, use the time you have after a bachelor’s degree and applying to an MBA in the USA to work, even if it’s part-time.

Even if nothing comes of it, at least you’ll have added something to your resume.


2. Extracurricular Activities (ECAs):

The What: All MBA applications will have some sort of designated space where you will be able to showcase your extracurricular interests.

The Why: All work and no play makes Jack a very dull boy. All colleges appreciate candidates who can balance their academic and work careers while still making room for their interests.

Additional Info: Even if not listed as a compulsory part of the admissions process, international students especially should list their ECAs. 

Remember, in a lot of people’s eyes, you’re taking up a spot that could go to a local — so show that you deserve that spot, and are a well-rounded applicant.

Pro Tip: It’s perfectly alright to not have any ECAs in college — the course load can be quite burdening.

If you feel that you don’t have many ECAs to show, you can always list the weekend sports you play.

You could even break out your high school certificates to show ECA interests.


3. A Statement Of Purpose:

The What: Almost every college that offers international students an MBA in the USA will have a space for an essay. In addition to that, many also have an optional “personal essay” that candidates can submit.

The Why: Just like a letter of recommendation, the personal statement, or statement of purpose can bring out information that wouldn’t normally come to light.
Pro Tip: When writing your personal essay, think of it like you writing a letter of recommendation for yourself in the first person.

Frequently Asked Questions

Now that all the minimum requirements have been gotten out of the way, here are some burning questions that international students have about an MBA in the USA.

  1. What documents do I need to submit as part of my MBA application?

A: You will typically need to submit transcripts from all universities attended, GMAT or GRE scores, a resume, letters of recommendation, and a personal statement or essay.

2. How important are extracurricular activities in MBA admissions?

A: While not as important as academic and professional achievements, extracurricular activities can demonstrate leadership skills and well-roundedness to admissions committees.

3. Can I apply for an MBA program without a bachelor’s degree?

A: In most cases, a bachelor’s degree is required for MBA admission. However, some universities may consider applicants without a bachelor’s degree if they have extensive work experience.

4. What is the average duration of an MBA program in the US?

A: The average duration of an MBA program in the US is two years, although some universities offer accelerated or part-time options.

5. What is the acceptance rate for MBA programs in top US universities?

A: Acceptance rates for top US MBA programs vary widely, but they are generally highly competitive. For example, Harvard Business School has an acceptance rate of around 11%.

What Next?

Now that you’ve understood the basics of MBA admission requirements, we’d suggest looking into funding your degree. 

A prudent further step would also be to choose a specialized degree MBA in the USA as opposed to a general MBA.

That said, the simplest advice is often the best advice. 

The single most important takeaway from here should be the following: “When in doubt, ask”.

We hope that you found this article helpful, and we hope to see you in the next one.

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MS in Finance: Career Advice

MS in Finance: Career advice

MS in Finance: Career Advice

An MS in Finance from the US will definitely help you attain the right skills for a career in finance. 


But landing your dream job can still be tough, given the competition. 

That’s why,  we have this blog to guide you in your MS in Finance career journey. 


So dive in and learn how you can navigate the Finance job market to reach the desired career success.

MS in Finance: Career Advice

Understanding the financial job market in the US

The financial job market in the US has been growing steadily. Here’s a quick overview of the job market that you are planning to enter:



Building a strong resume for finance roles

“A good resume is the first step to a successful job search.” – Unknown

To accelerate your search for a finance job, here are 5 tips for building the perfect resume:

  1. Include specific details about your experience with financial analysis, modeling, and valuation.
  2. Use numbers and data to demonstrate the impact of your work.
  3. Highlight relevant technical skills. For example, the knowledge of programming languages like Python or SQL. This is especially important if you are looking for a FinTech job.
  4. Many finance jobs use applicant tracking systems (ATS) to screen resumes. To make sure your resume makes it through the ATS, use finance-related keywords. Examples include financial modeling, risk management, and investment analysis. You can find more relevant keywords from the job description and include them in your resume.
  5. Show your familiarity with financial software such as Excel, Bloomberg, or QuickBooks.

Networking strategies to enhance job prospects

“Your next job will most likely come from someone you know, not from a job board.” – Unknown

Now, you already know that attending industry-specific events can be helpful. 

Here are 5 more networking strategies to enhance your finance job prospects:

  • Join professional associations.

Join the CFA Institute or the Financial Management Association. And attend their events and conferences.

  • Join alumni networks.

Colleges often have alumni portals, newsletters, and magazines. For example, the Robert H. Smith School of Business’s monthly newsletter, Smith Biz. Becoming a part of that network offers guidance, inspiration, and connections. 

  • Utilize social media, particularly LinkedIn.

Add a filter and connect with people who hold jobs that you wish to attain. Connect with them to stay updated, get inspired, and even get referrals from them. 

  • Participate in online forums or discussion boards related to finance.

Ask questions and engage with others in the industry to build a personal brand. 

  • Volunteer for finance-related organizations. 

This will provide opportunities to meet other professionals and gain valuable experience.

The importance of finance certifications

Employers value candidates with relevant financial certifications. This shows expertise in specific areas and a commitment to continued learning. Thus, providing a competitive edge in the job market. 

And you can pursue these certifications during and even after your MS in Finance. Also, some colleges and universities offer support in getting these certifications.

For example, the Miami Herbert Business School.

Importance of Finance Certifications


Importance of Finance Internships and How to Secure the right one

Engaging in finance internships provides a distinctive opportunity to:

  • Gain hands-on experience, 
  • Broaden industry knowledge, and 
  • Cultivate essential competencies

All this can contribute to your career success in the finance field.

Finding the right internship and job

Finding the right finance internships and job opportunities can be tough. Here are the various sources to try:

  1. Your university’s career center or job board. 
  2. Career fairs and networking events
  3. Alumni groups from your MS in Finance program
  4. Company websites or job search engines, such as LinkedIn, Indeed, or Glassdoor.
  5. Recruitment agencies that specialize in finance or accounting internships. Such as Robert Half or Accounting Principals (now LHH Recruitment).

Pro Tip: Selecting the right college can boost your chances of landing an internship and job. For example, with an MS in Finance Brandeis International Business School, you get the internship and job assurance. The following numbers prove it.

Right internship and job


Thus, don’t let monetary constraints affect your choice of college for an MS in Finance. That’s because the choice of college can majorly affect your career in finance.

Preparing for interviews: Types of questions and how to answer them

By using the above sources, you are likely to land several finance job interviews. 

Here are some tips to ace those interviews and make the most of your effort.

To begin with, interview questions are divided into 4 types. And below you’ll find tips to answer each of these types of questions.

1. Behavioral Questions

    • Use the STAR method (Situation, Task, Action, Result) to structure your responses. 
    • Prepare a few stories that demonstrate your key skills. And emphasize values such as teamwork, leadership, etc. 
    • Example question: “Tell me about a time when you had to handle a difficult client. What was the situation, and how did you handle it?”

2. Technical Questions

    • Review the job description and company website to understand the technical skills required. 
    • Practice solving finance problems and explaining your thought process out loud.
    • Use simple language and avoid jargon when explaining concepts.
    • Example question: “Walk me through the three financial statements. Also, tell me how they are connected.”

3. Case Questions

    • Clarify the problem and ask questions to gather additional information.
    • Use a structured approach to analyze the problem and develop a solution.
    • Explain your assumptions and reasoning clearly.
    • Example question: “How would you value a company that is considering an IPO?”

4. Fit Questions

    • Research the company’s values, mission, and culture.
    • Be authentic and honest in your responses while highlighting your skills and experience.
    • Example question: “Why do you want to work in finance, and why do you want to work for our company specifically?”

Salary expectations and negotiating job offers

Navigating salary expectations and negotiating job offers are crucial aspects of the job search process for finance professionals. 

Below, we have mentioned the average starting salaries for the top finance jobs. 

Job Title

Job Responsibilities

Average Starting Salary (per annum)

Investment baking 

Advising companies on M&A, raising capital, etc.


Corporate Finance

Managing a company’s financial operations, such as budgeting, forecasting, and financial analysis


Asset Management

Managing investment portfolios for clients, such as pension funds, endowments, and wealthy individuals. 


Risk Management

Identifying and mitigating potential risks to a company’s financial operations, such as credit risk, market risk, and operational risk. 


Financial Planning and Analysis (FP&A)

Analyzing financial data to support strategic decision-making within a company.


Based on these estimates you can set your own salary expectations. And then negotiate accordingly. Some tips to help you power through include:

  • Use the power of silence. Take a moment to think before responding to an initial offer. This can potentially help receive a higher salary.
  • Anchor the negotiation in your favor. State a higher number than your desired salary to influence the final outcome in your favor.
  • Highlight your value by using specific examples. Showcase how your skills and experience can benefit the company’s bottom line. Then tie those contributions to a higher salary.
  • Demonstrate confidence by maintaining a calm and assertive demeanor. 
  • Be willing to walk away if the salary isn’t right. This demonstrates your value and can help potentially receive a higher offer.

With that, you have all the Holy Grail hacks to kickstart a rewarding career in finance after MS in Finance from the USA. 

So don’t wait up, select the right college and get started today.


1. What are the top certifications for a successful career in finance?

Here are 5 top finance certifications that MS in Finance students can pursue during or after their course completion for a successful career in finance:

2.What are the key factors while searching for a finance internship?

Here’s what to look for in your finance internship:




Developing proficiency with industry software or tools

Bloomberg, FactSet, or Excel.

Gaining quantitative skills

Hands-on financial modeling and analysis exposure

Understanding real-world financial processes

Projects such as M&A or capital raising

Broadening your understanding of finance by gaining exposure to different areas

Investment banking, private equity, or hedge funds.

Learning about financial regulations and compliance requirements


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Jobs After A Masters In Business Administration: 10 Steps to 100% Clarity

Jobs After A Masters’ In Business Administration: 10 Steps to 100% Clarity

Jobs After A Masters In Business Administration: 10 Steps to 100% Clarity

So, you have either begun or are about to begin your MBA in the USA.

Congratulations — it’s a milestone. 

However, the USA is a competitive  market for international students, even for those with an MBA in the USA.

Jobs After A Masters In Business Administration: 10 Steps to 100% Clarity

Through this article, you will make yourself a very attractive candidate to employers. 

Getting a job after an MBA in the USA isn’t as hard as the world makes it out to be, but why not make things easier for yourself?

Today you will learn the following things (Specifically about an MBA in the USA):

  1. The US Job Market
  2. 5 Steps While In School
  3. 5 Steps After School
  4. Potential Earnings
  5. Frequently Asked Questions
  6. Closing Notes

Without any further ado, let us begin the 10 steps to 100% clarity for you to get a job after an MBA in the USA.

The US Job Market

As an international student, focus on three key areas of the US job market while studying for an MBA in the USA

The three key areas you need to understand about the US job market if you want to find a job after an MBA in the USA are:


Key Area




Key Industries

Helps you target your job search and/or align your college subjects.

The Princeton Review says, the best industries after an MBA in the USA are IT, Finance, and Marketing.



Good research is always vital, especially for impressing hiring managers.

Menlo Coaching says, the best companies after an MBA in the USA are Amazon, Deloitte, The BCG, and McKinsey And Co.


In-Demand Skills

For a job after an MBA in the USA, employers often look for other skills that would make you valuable.

This would be things like data analysis, digital marketing, international relations, etc. 

Read this article by The Harvard Business School to know more.

10 Steps to 100% Clarity

Here are the 10 things you need to do to become employable and get a job after an MBA in the USA:

While In College:

1. Use Campus Resources

Your school has loads of tools to help you find a job. 

Specifically for an MBA in the USA, these include things like the following:

    • The Alumni Network: A great place to start your internship/ job search. 

For example, at the University of Maryland, the alumni network is over 60,000 strong — a good place to start your job search.

All it takes is one message in the right groups (Facebook, LinkedIn, etc).

    • Career Fairs: Your college will host these from time to time. Treat them as a mixer where you can meet potential opportunities.

These “fairs” and other such events are organized by a dedicated department, like at Brandeis International Business School. 

Your college will definitely have a similar department.

Reach out to the office — the people here are always very friendly, and keep them in the loop about your plans. 

They will often send  opportunities your way if they know that you are looking out.

    • Student Advisors: These are your campus liaisons who will help you shape your career.

There will be loads more resources and facilities that are specific to your college — all you have to do is find out.

2. Network

Stay involved with the communities that you are a part of in college, as these will turn out to be valuable leads in the future.

Attending guest lectures, one-off lectures, presentations, etc. are a great way to begin cold emails.

You can often find scheduled lectures that your college is hosting online, like at the Miami Herbert School of Business.

Often, one of these lectures, presentations, talks, or other interactive sessions can be just the opening you need to get a foot in the door somewhere.

Example: “I first saw you present a Human Resource lecture at _____ college, and…”.

The saying “Your network defines your net worth.” is around for a reason.

3. Get Internships

Internships are important in every course — and an MBA in the USA is no different.

Internships are often a way for enterprises to “trial” your work without probation.

That is why internships are often stepping stones to  permanent positions.

A lot of institutions (like Baruch College, for example) partner with companies that offer internships to full-time MBA students at Baruch.

If your college has a similar partnership, getting an internship at a partner company would be much easier, and could even materialize into a permanent job when you graduate.

4. Get Involved With Extracurriculars

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy, which is why nobody likes to hire someone who is only about their work.

Organizations like well rounded people, not just the academically proficient.

So during your MBA in the USA, find extracurricular activities  alongside your course.

Nothing is stopping you from combining your academics with extracurriculars.

For example, you could volunteer with a non-profit, pro bono for instance. 

Such a move not only gives you on the job experience, but also boosts your resume and curriculum vitae.

Co-curricular activities could be the key to landing you a job after an MBA in the USA.

5. Build An Online Presence

Having a strong, positive online presence is also key to landing a good job after an MBA in the USA.

LinkedIn is a place where you can build your image as an authority  by posting frequently. 

Twitter is a platform that will help you connect with leaders in the industry space. It also helps you simultaneously stay updated with relevant news.

In the US, it is common practice for employers to look up your social media presence when hiring. 

This is why you need to be careful about what you put out on social media, especially during college.


After You Graduate From College

6. Understand Work Authorization For International Students

Now that you have graduated college, getting a job in the US is not as straightforward as you might think.

The US work visa system is very convoluted, which is why you need to familiarize yourself with it.

Here is the process, at an extremely low level:

    • Form I-20: Once you have been accepted, you fill out form I-20 to get the F-1 visa, after you present I-20 to the embassy or consulate.
    • F-1 Visa: The F-1 visa is what allows you to study in a relevant accredited institution. The F-1 is a non-immigrant visa, meaning it doesn’t count towards permanent residency.
    • OPT: After you graduate, you should, in most cases, be eligible for a 12 month period of Optional Practical Training 
    • EAD: While on OPT, you will be on an F-1 visa. At this time, you need to apply for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD), which is what makes you eligible to work after an MBA in the USA. It is issued by USCIS.
    • Other Visas: After your OPT period ends, you may be eligible for other types of immigrant and nonimmigrant US visas, such as the H1-B visa for highly skilled workers, which is typically what people aim for after an MBA in the USA.

7. Research Your Companies

This goes without saying: lots of organizations, enterprises, and companies will openly advertise that they are hiring for specific managers, such as those with experience in HR, or supply chain, or something similar.

If you see a number of companies all looking for a particular skill set, then you know which part of your course to direct your energies onto.

That way, you can pick up a few extra classes in your final year, or help out in a related department during your internships, which will make getting a job after an MBA in the USA that much easier.

8. Target Your Job Search Properly

By far, the most important thing to keep in mind during your job search is that not all companies sponsor their employees. 

Now, for a short term gig, this is not an issue by any means, but if you are looking at long term employment after completing an MBA in the USA, then you need a company to sponsor you, because it makes getting an H1-B much easier.

The good news is that a lot of companies do sponsor work visas for high caliber international candidates, and the fact that you would have completed an MBA in the USA — home grounds for them, would make you a better fit for the company.

Read more about popular after-MBA jobs as explained by the Martin Tuchmann School of Management.

9. Stay Up To Date On Industry Developments

This is a crucial step for any international MBA student looking to build a career in the US, where relevant knowledge is given top priority — no one wants their manager to have five year old information.

You can stay up to date by reading industry-specific, or generally commended books, attending networking events, joining groups on social media, following publications like Forbes and the Wall Street Journal, etc.

10. Consider Temporary Positions

Sometimes, you might not get a job no matter how hard you try.

Do not give up, because something always comes through.

Considering a short term, fixed term, or temporary position may work to your advantage.

Such a move would have many benefits.

For starters, you begin to get that valuable, coveted work experience under your belt.

Secondly, such positions often have short notice periods, so if you do get a better offer you can take it.

Three, short term or temporary positions often materialize into permanent hires.

Potential Earnings

Here is a table that we have combined with the median and top salaries across recruiters in the US after candidates have completed their MBA in the USA:



Median Salary

Top Salary



GMAC – The Graduate Management Admissions Council





The Financial Times – Data Averaged Across 2023, 2022, and 2021.

140,000 (approx).








All figures in USD.

It is also quite normal to wonder about the cost of attending postgraduate school in the US, which is where FundRight comes in.


Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can I apply for jobs in the US before completing my MBA program?

Yes, you can apply for jobs in the US before completing your MBA program. However, employers may be more willing to hire candidates who have completed their degree or have relevant work experience. Additionally, international students may need to secure work authorization through the OPT or CPT programs.

2. Can I work part-time while studying for my MBA in the US?

Yes, international students can work part-time on campus while studying for their MBA in the US, as long as they maintain their F-1 student visa status. However, off-campus employment may require approval from the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

3. How long does it take to obtain work authorization after completing an MBA in the US as an international student?

It depends on the type of work authorization, but typically it takes around 3-4 months to obtain OPT or CPT.

4. Is it necessary to have a job offer before applying for OPT or CPT?

No, it is not necessary to have a job offer before applying for OPT or CPT. However, you must have a job offer before your OPT or CPT starts.

5. Can I work off-campus during my MBA program in the US?

International students in the US with an F-1 visa are generally not allowed to work off-campus during their first academic year. However, they may be eligible for Curricular Practical Training (CPT) or Optional Practical Training (OPT) during subsequent years of study. It is important to consult with your university’s international student office to understand the specific requirements and limitations of these programs.

The Next Step

This article guided you ten things you should keep in mind when attempting to get a job after an MBA in the USA.

We hope you found it helpful.

With that, we hope to see you in the next article, and remember, our team is always only a message away.

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