Business Education

MBA Admission Requirements: What Do Top US Universities Expect?

MBA Admission Requirements: What Do Top US Universities Expect?

Campus events at top MBA Universities in USA: What to expect?

So, you’re considering an MBA in the USA — good choice.

Life will be a rollercoaster when you’re at a coveted MBA school in USA.

This guide is a crystal ball. Peek right in.

MBA Admission Requirements: What Do Top US Universities Expect?

Why This Matters

You see, an MBA in the USA is not just about having the best faculty, excellent opportunities, and motivated peer groups — though these do help.

An MBA in the USA is a class apart from the rest of the world because of all the additives.
By this we mean things like post-degree employment, campus events, infrastructure, alumni networks, student services, and a whole lot more.
A big part of the whole “MBA in the USA” experience is on-campus events, which we’ll cover.
In addition to being straight-up fun, MBA campus events are one of the defining cornerstones of an MBA in the USA.

The upfront conclusion

We believe in not wasting precious time. 

Here are the most popular campus events that you can expect to be at your university if you are doing your MBA in the USA.

  1. Speaker Events And Conferences
  1. Campus Clubs And Campus Affiliations
  1. Workshops And Skill Development Sessions
  1. Career Fairs
  1. Networking Events
  1. Culture And Diversity Events
  1. Competitions
  1. Alumni Events
  1. Extracurricular Activities
  1. Panel Discussions/ Trainings (With Industry Experts)

Campus Events At Top US Universities — A Guide

Let us look at the different campus events that you will be a part of while pursuing an MBA in the USA:

Speaker Events And Conferences

Source: The Massey College Of Business

1. Speaker Events And Conferences

What They Are: A platform where people who are entrepreneurs, industry leaders, authors, and more, take the stage and speak to current students.

How They Help: As an international student in the USA, attending such events allows you to stay up to date on industry developments, understand emerging trends easily, and learn about global business practices.

Additional Info: You can often access upcoming speaker events and conferences online. 

For instance, Baruch College has an events calendar specifically for this — and a lot of other MBA colleges do too.

Pro Tip: A lot of the time, these events are open to every major, not just MBAs, and are often “open to attend” and free. 

Translation: a lot of times, you can attend similar events at other colleges in your area.

Campus Clubs And Campus Affiliations


2. Campus Clubs And Campus Affiliations

What They Are: A place where like-minded students with similar interests can meet, form networks, and advance their skills

How They Help: Joining clubs and affiliations that interest you is something that you should do as soon as possible — especially if you are an international student.

These places are brilliantly positioned to help “break the ice” as it were, and help you settle into your new life for the next one or two years.

Additional Info: More often than not, student club representatives will be at your batch “orientation day” when you join a program.

If not, all MBA colleges worth their salt display their clubs and affiliations on their website — just like the Miami Herbert School of Business does.

Pro Tip: Consider joining campus clubs/ affiliations outside of the business school or even outside the university.


3. Workshops And Skill Development Sessions

What They Are: Practical one-off or short-term classes led by people with specific skill sets.

Example: An expert in data tabulation may conduct an optional masterclass for finance analytics students. 

How They Help: These optional sessions are usually conducted in the students’ free time. They also usually provide a wealth of valuable information that would normally be a part of the course load.

Pro Tip: In case you missed a workshop that you wanted to attend, or were unable to attend for some other reason, don’t fret.

A lot of institutions, like Brandeis University for example, upload relevant materials from the workshop to their websites. A simple search like this one should get you what you want.

Sometimes, unlike at Brandeis, these search results are on an internal database accessible only to current students — it never hurts to ask.


4. Career Fairs

What They Are: A special type of campus event, mostly for final year students, aimed at getting them employed.

How They Help: A lot of top US MBA universities have tie-ups with local, national, and multinational businesses. The general rule of thumb is that the better you do, the more likely a company is to scoop you up at one of these events.

Additional Info: Even if a particular college does not advertise the connections that they have to prospective employers for their students, there usually is some other alternative.

For instance, the NJIT Martin Tuchman School of Business has a dedicated portal  for their students, called the “Career Development Services” portal.


5. Networking Events

What They Are: Gatherings and social events where new students can fraternize with each other, their faculty, and oftentimes, even alumni of the college.

How They Help: Especially for international students, mixers, balls, musical evenings, retreats, and similar events are a great way to add to your rolodex of connections.

Remember, your network defines your net worth.

Pro Tip: Remember to exchange contact information, and then follow up with personalized emails or a phone call to cement the connection.


6. Culture And Diversity Events

What They Are: Events organized to promote diversity, inclusion, and cultural knowledge. 

These are often organized in connection with upcoming or nearby festivals, such as the Chinese new year for example.

How They Help: A lot of people attribute their success within diverse teams and in multinational organizations to such events. 

Long story short, the more you know about various cultures, the better.

Pro Tip: Joining in, and perhaps even speaking at events related to your own culture and/ or background is an excellent way to form new friendships and leave a lasting impact on those around you.


7. Competitions (Various)

What They Are: Events where different students get to display their skills and foster a spirit of healthy competition. These can be inter-class, inter-college, inter-university, or even more.

How They Help: For international students, competitions, even smaller intra-class ones are often the best way to get to know their fellow students.

They are often fun, and are more often than not, directly related to the course, such as mock sales pitch competitions for MBA students.

Pro Tip: Competition results, like the ones from mock courts, or mock sales pitches, or mock market analyses, are often taken into consideration by potential employers.

Alumni Events


8. Alumni Events

What They Are: Events where past students of a college/ university/ course can gather to network. Oftentimes, current students are also invited to these events.

How They Help: As a student, these alumni events are a great way to generate leads for potential job openings, or to get references. In addition to that, they are an excellent place to make job connections, by way of finding potential suppliers, clients, and the like.

Additional Info: Many universities also have (college-specific) alumni-student mentorship connection platforms. 

For instance, at the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business, this platform is called “Terrapins Connect”.


9. Extracurricular Activities

What They Are: Activities organized on a regular basis not directly related to your course load, such as sports societies, hobbyist clubs, and fraternities.

How They Help: In general, ECAs are a great occupation of your spare time. 

They can keep you fit, they can keep you interested, they can help you meet new people, make friends, and often, do all of those at the same time.


10. Panel Discussions/ Trainings (With Industry Experts)

What They Are: In a similar vein to speaker events, Panel Discussions are les interactive events.

How They Help: These help in highly technical MBAs, such as law, or technology courses. 

For the most part, it is a spectator event, where one can watch and listen to industry experts interact and predict trends. 

That said, the audience often has the chance to ask the panel members questions.

Why US MBAs Are Valuable

So what sets an MBA in the USA apart?

Well, words can lie but numbers cannot. 

Just take a look at this data, sourced from the AACSB Business School Data Guide. It has been assimilated and verified by Poets & Quants.




MBA Program Specifications

Candidates For An MBA, Global

Candidates For An MBA In The USA




Approximate Total Of MBA Students Across The Globe





Approximate Total Of Full Time MBA Students 





Approximate Total Of Part Time MBA Students 





Approximate Total Of Online MBA Students 





Approximate Total Of Executive MBA Students



Also, the most important statistic in our opinion: employability (post-completion).


This factsheet from the AACSB tells us that about 90% of graduates who complete an MBA in the USA get employed within six months of graduating.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Are campus events only beneficial for networking purposes?

While networking is a significant aspect of campus events, they offer much more. They provide opportunities for skill development, cultural immersion, industry insights, and building a well-rounded MBA experience.

2. Can international students attend campus events outside their business school?

Absolutely! Many campus events are open to students from all majors. Embrace the chance to explore events organized by various departments, clubs, and organizations to broaden your horizons and connect with a diverse community.

3. How can I balance attending campus events with my academic workload?

Time management is key. Prioritize events aligned with your interests and goals, and create a schedule that allows for both academic commitments and event participation. Remember, these events complement your education and contribute to your personal and professional growth.

4. Can campus events help me discover career opportunities specific to my field?

Yes! Campus events often feature industry professionals who share insights into specific sectors, trends, and job opportunities. Attending such events can provide valuable information and connections that may lead to internships, mentorships, and even job offers.

5. Are there any costs associated with attending campus events?

In most cases, campus events are either free or have minimal costs for attendees. Universities understand the value of these events for students’ growth and usually aim to make them accessible to all. Check event listings or university websites for any registration fees or additional details specific to certain events.

The Next Step

There are so many great MBA colleges in the US, one really is spoilt for choice. That is where we come in. 

After that, the next logical step would be to plan how you are going to finance your degree — an MBA in the USA isn’t exactly cheap. 

Again, we can help you here. 

Like we said, campus events are a cornerstone of the US MBA experience.

Active participation in campus events is key to actually enjoying yourself while at college.

These events foster cultural exchange, international diversity, providing networking opportunities, and make the overall studying experience worth it.

After all, all work and no play makes Jack a very dull boy.

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MS in Finance versus MBA in Finance: How to decide?

MS in Finance versus MBA in Finance: How to decide?

MS in Finance versus MBA in Finance: How to decide?

Pursuing an MS in Finance may seem like the obvious choice if you wish to specialize in finance. But the alternative option of pursuing an MBA in Finance can leave you perplexed.

MS in Finance versus MBA in Finance: How to decide?

With the right guidance, however, you can make the right choice.

In this blog, we will dive deeper into MS in Finance vs MBA in Finance.  By the end of this blog, you’d be ready to make an informed decision about which degree is right for you. 

We’ll cover:

  • MS in Finance is a specialized graduate degree
  • Provides in-depth knowledge of financial concepts, theories, and practices
  • For students seeking to develop skills like: 
    • Financial analysis, 
    • Risk management, 
    • Investment management, 
    • Financial modelling, etc.

Get ready to gain clarity and confidence in your career path!

MBA in Finance – An Overview

  • MBA in Finance is a broader business degree
  • Covers a wide range of business-related topics in addition to Finance. (Such as marketing, accounting, operations, and strategy) 
  • For students seeking to develop:
    • Business acumen,
    • Leadership skills, 
    • And also gaining expertise in finance.

MS in Finance vs MBA in Finance


MS in Finance

MBA in Finance

Cost of program

From $20,000 to $80,000

From $50,000 to $150,000


12-18 months

2 years

Top topics covered

Corporate finance, financial modeling, risk management, investments, financial accounting

Finance, accounting, economics, marketing, operations, organizational behavior

Work experience

Preferred but not always required

Requires 2-3 years of work experience


Highly Competitive

Forgiving of lower GMAT/GRE scores

Top skills gained

  • In-depth knowledge of finance concepts and practices
  • Financial analysis
  • Quantitative modeling
  • Data analysis
  • Communication
  • Broad business acumen and leadership skills
  • Finance expertise,
  • Critical thinking,
  • Problem-solving,
  • Communication,

Placement opportunities and prospective job roles

Investment banking, corporate finance, financial consulting, asset management, risk management

Investment management, consulting, general management, corporate finance, entrepreneurship

ROI and average salaries

Generally lower cost and shorter duration leads to higher ROI.

Average salaries range from $60,000 to $120,000 per year

Higher cost and longer duration can still lead to high ROI but may take longer to realize.

Average salaries range from $90,000 to $150,000 per year

MS in Finance: Strengths and Weaknesses



In-depth knowledge of financial concepts and practices

Limited exposure to broader business topics beyond finance

Focused curriculum helps develop specific skills. (Like financial analysis, risk management, and investment management)

Can be expensive, with high tuition and living costs in the USA

Program content is highly relevant to a career in finance

Fewer networking opportunities compared to MBA programs

Typically shorter duration than an MBA, allowing for a quicker entry into the job market

May not offer as much flexibility in terms of course options and electives

More emphasis on technical and analytical skills. This makes graduates highly sought after in the job market


MBA in Finance: Strengths and Weaknesses



Broader program that covers a wide range of business-related topics in addition to finance

Less specialized than an MS in Finance program

Greater emphasis on networking opportunities with fellow students and alumni

Can be more expensive and time-consuming than an MS in Finance program

Flexibility in course options and electives, allowing for customization based on career goals

May take longer to complete than an MS in Finance program

High value in the job market, as an MBA in Finance is often seen as a qualification for top-level management positions

Can be competitive to gain admission to top MBA programs

Decide Between MS in Finance and MBA in Finance

Still confused between MS in Finance vs MBA in Finance?

Ask yourself the following questions to decide whether you should go with MS in Finance or MBA in Finance.


1. Do you want to specialize in finance or gain broader business education with some specialization in finance? 

Choose MS in Finance for specialization in Finance. 

Choose MBA in Finance for broader business education with some specialization in finance.

2. How much are you willing to pay for the degree? 

MS in Finance is generally less expensive than MBA in Finance. However, the cost of the program shouldn’t be the only deciding factor. 

3. What kind of career are you looking for? 

MS in Finance is ideal for landing finance-related jobs. MBA in Finance, on the other hand, is ideal for managerial and leadership roles.

Some colleges, like Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland also offer specialized career tracks with their MS in Finance program. 

What kind of career are you looking for?


Such specializations can make MS in Finance a better option for those looking for specific careers.

With that, you are well-equipped to choose either MS in Finance or MBA in Finance based on your specific needs. So don’t wait, kickstart your American education dream today.


1. Can I do both MS in Finance and MBA?

Yes, you can. With that, you can specialize in finance and also develop strong leadership skills. 

You can go for one course after the other or get dual specialization as well. 

Institutions like Brandeis International Business School offer dual specialization options worth considering.

Can I do both MS in Finance and MBA?


2. What are some other alternatives to MS in Finance that I can consider?

Other than MBA in Finance, worthy alternatives to MS in Finance include:

    • Master’s in Financial Engineering: A specialized degree combining finance, mathematics, and computer science.

Suitable for those who wish to work in the quantitative finance industry. (For example, risk management, asset management, or trading.)

What are some other alternatives to MS in Finance that I can consider?


The course equips you with the necessary skills to succeed in the rapidly evolving FinTech industry.

    • Master’s in Economics: It is a master’s program that focuses specifically on economic theory, policy analysis, and research methods. 

It is suitable for those who wish to pursue a career in economic research, government agencies, or non-profit organizations.

    • CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst):  It is a professional certification. A self-study program, it is offered by the CFA Institute. Students are required to pass three levels of exams. And meet specific work experience requirements. It is suitable for specializing in investment analysis and portfolio management.

Some MS in Finance programs, like the ones from Zicklin School of Business, Baruch University, and Miami Herbert Business School are designed to help you in your CFA journey.

CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst)
CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst)


Enrolling in such a course can help you get the best of an MS in Finance along with support in your CFA journey. 

3. Is MBA Finance a STEM course like MS in Finance?

An MBA in Finance is generally not considered a STEM course, unlike an MS in Finance. 

This classification can affect international students who want to work in the US. Those who graduate from STEM-designated programs are eligible for extended work authorization.

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MS in Business Analytics versus MS in MBA: How to decide?

MS in Business Analytics versus MS in MBA: How to decide?

MS in Business Analytics versus MBA: How to decide?

Which is better: MS in Business Analytics or MBA? 

Decades ago, career options were limited. Luckily, we have a plethora of career options to choose from now. (Look how many!)

MS in Business Analytics versus MBA: How to decide?


But too many decisions mean we have too many choices to make. This guide can make your life easier.

Article Overview:

  • Differences between MS in Business Analytics and MBA
  • Similarities between MS in Business Analytics and MBA 
  • MS in Business Analytics Vs MBA: Salary Comparison
  • Top 10 Colleges for MSBA and MBA Programs
  • In Conclusion — What Degree Is Right for You?


MS in Business Analytics Vs MBA: Differences





To learn how to gather and use data to make business decisions.

To develop a broad range of business skills and delve deep into how a business operates.


Takes 1 year to complete or a little over a year.

Takes 2 years to complete.


Includes courses in data mining, statistical analysis, predictive modeling, data visualization, and machine learning.

Includes courses in management, accounting, finance, marketing, and strategy.


May require students to have a background in Statistics or Computer Science

Usually requires students to have at least 2 years of professional industry experience.

Career Path

Post MSBA, students usually pursue careers as data scientists, data analysts, or business analysts.

Post MBA, students usually pursue careers in finance, entrepreneurship, marketing, management, and



From the above table, we can gather that these are factors that may influence your decision:

  1. Career Goals: Consider your long-term career goals and the type of job you want to have. If you are interested in working in a technical role, such as a data analyst or data scientist, then an MS in Business Analytics is right for you. This program provides the technical skills and knowledge required to solve business problems.

However, if you are interested in a more general management role, such as a marketing manager or project manager, then an MBA may be the better option. This program provides a broader understanding of business operations and strategy, with an emphasis on leadership and management skills.

  • Skills and Interests: Consider your skills and interests when deciding between an MS in Business Analytics and an MBA. If you enjoy working with data and have a strong analytical mind, then an MS in Business Analytics may be a good fit for you. This program requires a strong foundation in mathematics and computer science, and students must be comfortable working with data and statistical models.

If you’re inclined towards leadership and management, then an MBA may be a better fit. This program emphasizes leadership skills, such as communication, decision-making, and team management.

  • Program Structure: Consider the structure of the program when deciding between an MS in Business Analytics and an MBA. MS in Business Analytics programs are typically shorter than MBA programs, ranging from 10 months to two years. These programs are often more intensive, with a heavy emphasis on technical coursework.

MBA programs, on the other hand, are typically longer, ranging from one to two years or even longer in some cases. MBA programs are often designed for working professionals and offer more flexibility – allowing students to continue working while pursuing their degree. MBA programs also offer a wider range of elective courses, allowing students to tailor their education to their specific career goals.

MS in Business Analytics Vs MBA: Similarities

  1. Both programs equip students with relevant skills to manage a business.
  2. MS in Business Analytics and MBA offer networking opportunities.
  3. Both programs are offered by top colleges, which means that both are highly sought-after degrees.


MS in Business Analytics Vs MBA: Salary

Payscale shows a difference of over $10,000 between the two. While graduates of an MS in Business Analytics earned $75,000 a year, graduates of an MBA degree earned about $87,000 a year.


Top 10 Colleges for MSBA and MBA Programs

For help choosing the right university, turn to GradRight!

Top 10 Colleges for MSBA and MBA Programs


In Conclusion — What Degree Is Right for You?

If you’re keen to pursue a career in data analytics, an MS in business analytics may be a better fit for you. On the other hand, if you want to take up management or leadership roles, an MBA may be a better option.

Keep in mind the industry you want to get into as well. While industries like finance or consulting prefer candidates with an MBA, tech or healthcare industries value those with an MS in business analytics.

While an MS in business analytics degree is shorter than an MBA, the latter will provide you with a more rounded business education. However, an MBA is more expensive.

Several factors play a role in the selection process. But the ultimate decision in this battle – MS in Business Analytics versus MBA – depends on your personal goals and interests. Take our help to research curriculums, universities, and prospective jobs to make a wise decision.

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