Category Archives: Career Exploration

Careers in Public Service: An Interview with NYU Peace Corps Recruiter Helen Alesbury

The Wasserman Center will be interviewing professionals working in public service to better understand how their careers have progressed. For our first “Careers in Public Service” interview, we met with the Peace Corps. Over 1,000 NYU alumni have gone on to serve in the Peace Corps.

We spoke with Helen Alesbury, a current graduate student at NYU’s Graduate School of Arts & Science, who also happens to be the NYU Peace Corps Recruiter. She served in the Peace Corps in El Salvador as a Health Volunteer. Below is an excerpt of our interview.


Wasserman Center (Wass): What has your career path looked like? How did you get started in this field?

Helen Alesbury (Helen): After graduating from George Washington University I applied and served as a Peace Corps Volunteer working for 2 years in rural El Salvador as a health volunteer. After that incredibly formative experience, I worked for Peace Corps Headquarters back in Washington, DC​ on their Safety & Security team. After working there for a little over a year, I headed to graduate school here at NYU to get my master’s degree in Anthropology, focusing on forensics and to eventually use my skills as a forensic anthropologist to help war torn countries like El Salvador. While working towards my master’s degree I am also a part time, on campus recruiter for the Peace Corps, based out of the Wasserman Career Center.

Wass: What skills/degrees are required to enter this field?

Helen: To become a Peace Corps Volunteer you must have a bachelor’s degree and relevant work or volunteer experience in the field you would like to serve in (Health, Education, Youth, Business, Environment, and agriculture). Beyond that, you need a passion for learning about and experiencing other cultures.

Wass: What personality traits/characteristics do employers in this field value?

Helen: Peace Corps is the ‘toughest job you’ll ever love’ so having patience and determination are vital! To be an effective volunteer you have to be dedicated to working with a community and using your skills as they are needed, not necessarily doing what you think needs to be done. It also helps to have a good sense of humor about yourself and your failures. It is all about learning how to celebrate the little victories in life.

Wass: What are the typical entry-level positions?

Helen: All Peace Corps positions are “entry level”, but possibly the least “entry-level” type job you could ever imagine. As a volunteer you will be called on to help manage projects, lead communities, liaise with organizations, and represent the United States abroad.

Wass: What is an average day/week on the job like?

Helen: As a volunteer there is no “typical” day. Peace Corps is exactly what you make of it. Some days you will be teaching in a classroom, the next you may be hiking up a mountain to see if there are natural springs you can tap for the community. You may even be working as a translator for a group of doctors or dentists another day. It is the least typical job you could ever imagine.​

Wass: What is the typical work environment/culture like?

Helen: Peace Corps Volunteers serve in over 65 countries worldwide. Communities where Peace Corps Volunteers serve range from being in rural villages of a few hundred people, to larger urban areas of several thousand. ​

Wass: What are the opportunities for in-service training/professional development?

Helen: One of the best aspects of Peace Corps is the experience you get in all types of situations. Not only is it “on the job training”, but Peace Corps organizes 3 months of intensive training upon arrival in your country of service to instruct you in the local language, customs, and ways to manage projects. Throughout the 27 month service you also have ISTs (In-Service Trainings), that will help you develop your skills and workshop different situations you have during your service.

Wass: What are the opportunities for advancement within this field?

Helen: Peace Corps is a great first step to any career. Because it gives you experience in so many different ways, you can use it to your advantage. Volunteers go on to work in the State Department, the Foreign Service, international NGOs, MFA, and the UN to name a few. Not to mention the US Congress has several Returned Peace Corps Volunteers.

Wass: What’s the best networking strategy for this field?

Helen: ​Start by talking to me! I am NYU’s campus recruiter and can be reached at Coming to an info session is a great way to start getting information and figuring out if Peace Corps is right for you. Additionally, never shy away from an informational interview – it is the best way to get information and ask the questions you really need the answers to. Also make sure you come to career fairs and information sessions! They are the best tools you have to find what fits for you and to get as much information as possible.​

Helen, NYU’s Peace Corps Recruiter, can be reached at; she holds drop-in hours at NYU Wasserman every Wednesday, 12pm-2pm, or by appointment. The Peace Corps will be attending the upcoming NGO Forum on Friday, November 18th, in Washington, DC. NYU Wasserman will be providing a bus to and from DC, but you need to secure your seat ASAP! Find the details and RSVP information here.

Transitioning from College to Career: Never Too Early for Great Advice

Sheila Lynch joined the Wasserman Center in 2009 and is currently serving as an Assistant Director. A longtime member of the campus community, Sheila received her B.A. in Psychology from NYU’s College of Arts and Science and is currently pursuing her M.A. in NYU Steinhardt’s Counseling for Mental Health and Wellness program.

It’s the one thing that unites all students–regardless of major, degree, year or experience. One day, the textbooks will close, and you will be thrust into the “real world.” Some of you may already be mentally preparing for what this will look like:

-commuting to the office during rush hour
-in the field 9am-6pm, 5 days a week
-goodbye long summer breaks…

Others may be rubbing their temples and considering the validity of a third consecutive master’s degree because being a student forever might be fun…! (If this is you, come see a Career Coach).

Regardless of where you are in your NYU career, at some point it will be your time to transition from university life to full-time work. At the Wasserman Center, it is our goal to make this transition as smooth as possible by teaching you the skills, tools, and strategies for successful job searching and long-term career development.

But we also recognize that it isn’t just about finding your first job out of school. There are many other facets to consider:

-negotiating salary and benefits
-making a good impression on the job
-maintaining a networking and building a brand
-navigating “office politics”
-setting professional goals
-finding a mentor
-developing a leadership style
To help address these topics (and more), the Wasserman Center is hosting its annual College to Career Boot Camp on Friday, Nov.13th from 9:30am-4:30pm in Palladium. We’re bringing in leaders from a variety of industries to share their insights and help you develop the skills you need to hit the ground running. This one-day conference is open to students of all levels. APPLY to NYU CareerNet Job ID 99169 by midnight on Tuesday, October 13th. 
Leading up to the event, we’ll be featuring quick tips from your very own Wasserman Career Coaches, as they share their experience with transitioning from college to career through this blog. Here’s a sneak peek:

Best advice I got…
-It takes years to build a brand, and seconds to destroy it.
-Take on those special projects/extra work. [They’re a] great way to meet people and get exposure to new things/skills.
-Before you start a job, reach out to your manager and ask how you can best prepare (what you can read up on, etc). Not only will this help you prepare to enter a new industry, but your boss will be impressed with you from the start.

I wish I had known…
-I wish I hadn’t “played it so safe” with my job search. I would have applied to more “reach” jobs.
-You have to work to create community after college. There’s no dining hall or club meeting where you know you will see people on a consistent basis.
-[I wish I had known] how important networking would be, especially as it pertains to applying to graduate school. Sometimes we think networking is only relevant in the job search context, but it was extremely useful for me to understand its value in other areas.

We’ll be providing more “best advice” as College to Career Boot Camp approaches. In the meantime, don’t hesitate to send in your application to attend the conference in person. Remember, the deadline is tomorrow at 11:59 PM!

4 Things to Expect at a Big Company

Jacqueline Allen is part of the Unilever Future Leader’s Program. Her current role is a CD/Marketing Management Trainee on the Kroger Foods Team in Cincinnati Ohio. She is a 2015 graduate of NYU Stern where she majored in Marketing and Management and was President of the Marketing Society.

When it comes to choosing your first job out of college, there is a lot of debate over whether to start your career at a small company or a large company. There are differences and benefits to each. I just wrapped up my training for UFLP (Unilever Future Leader’s Program) so you can tell I went big. Here are 4 things to expect when working at a big company.

1. Structure

Big companies like Unilever have structured programs for new hires. UFLP is a three year rotational program that teaches us about our function (Marketing, Supply Chain, R&D, HR, IT or Finance) from a variety of viewpoints so that we really understand the business and can be effective managers. A structured program allows you to experience many aspects of the business while being guided through the different departments. At a smaller company you might have to request to transfer to a different role or department, but at Unilever it’s part of the job description.

2. Support

Since the company has many employees, there is an extensive support system. In UFLP we have a manager for the current rotation, a manager across the 3 years, an assigned mentor and a buddy who’s in the program a year ahead of us, plus HR and the more informal network we’ll be building within the company. Large companies want to train their new hires and really see them succeed so all of the people involved in the program are championing the program and the people in it.

3. Passionate People

That brings me to the people. There are so many passionate people at Unilever. The people that succeed the most are the most passionate people who are dedicated to what they do. During training we heard from many senior employees about their paths at Unilever and why they love coming to work every day. A big part of that is the Unilever Sustainable Living Plan which is our sustainability plan that sets out to double growth while halving our environmental footprint. At a big company you’ll find passionate people working on innovations and what the next step looks like for the company. Large companies typically have the time and resources to dedicate to planning the future while smaller firms or startups are more focused on the current business and the near future.

4. Impactful Projects

2 billion people a day use Unilever products. With numbers like that any project you work on at Unilever can impact and improve the lives of so many people. It’s inspiring to work at a company where the things you do are executed on such a huge scale. It’s very cool to be working with brands that have the power to make the world a better place.

Large companies typically have large structured training programs that allow new hires to learn the business from multiple perspectives, the network to support your growth, passionate people surrounding you and impactful projects to work on. My advice to younger students: try to gain internship experience at a variety of companies so you get a chance to experience the differences firsthand to understand where you like to work.

For more information about the UFLP program or internships at Unilever, check out


Get the lowdown on hot careers from experts including Unilever at 


Tuesday, September 1st 12-2pm, Wasserman Center Main Office

This is your opportunity to get the lowdown on many different industries and jobs in a quick, easy and fun setting! Come meet employers, eat free food (including Insomnia Cookies!) and chat with Wasserman Staff about your job search, career direction, major selection or anything else!

Navigating the Job Search through Wasserman

The following post was written by Jeffrey Chan, who through the help of Wasserman Center for Career Development has secured his dream job! He is graduating next month with a Bachelor of Science degree in Hotel and Tourism Management, with a concentration in Marketing and Revenue Management.

Throughout my undergraduate career at NYU, a key part of the job and internship search process was reaching out to the Wasserman Center for career advice and development. Wasserman’s division within the Tisch Center for Hospitality and Tourism was very helpful in searching for internship opportunities, full-time job opportunities, and also offered assistance in career development when building my résumé and preparing for interviews. Upon entering the Hospitality program my freshmen year, I did not know much about the Wasserman Center, but as I progressed through the program, I began to utilize the center and the resources that it had to offer.

In my sophomore year, I took a Professional Seminar class that encouraged students to participate in the Wasserman Center by signing up for workshops and scheduling appointments with counselors to build or critique our resumés. After building a resumé, we were required to prepare an elevator pitch about ourselves and practice answering interview questions to prepare us for the job search. This preparation was very beneficial for students in preparing for the Tisch Center Hospitality Expo, a career fair featuring over 50 companies with internship and job opportunities offered each semester during the fall and spring. During my undergraduate career at NYU, I have secured two internship opportunities through the career fair and Wasserman offered plenty of assistance along the way.


During my junior and senior year, I utilized the on-campus recruitment program through the Wasserman Center and this allowed me to secure interview opportunities with great companies that were searching for students with experience relative to our undergraduate program. Throughout the interview process, I scheduled appointments with career counselors if I needed any advice in approaching an interview or if I needed any practice before an interview. In addition, workshops or coaching sessions were also offered to develop our personal branding skills and tips during salary or position-related negotiations.

Overall, the assistance offered was very helpful and it was great knowing that students had support from the Wasserman Center when searching for job opportunities. The Wasserman Center definitely offers plenty of resources for students to use and I highly recommend any undergraduate student in the program to schedule an appointment with a career counselor soon.

Choosing Between Opportunities

Originally posted on

Decisions, decisions. We face mountains of them each and every day.

Domino’s or Pizza Hut? Netflix or Hulu? Jeans or jeggings? Ice cream or cake, or both? All very real and pressing decisions you make in your glamorous day-to-day life.

Choosing between two good things can be tough. Especially when those two good things will affect THE REST OF YOUR LIFE. We’re talking job offers here. You’ll want to take a little more time weighing your options when it comes to an activity that will consume a good chunk of your waking hours.

If you face this big decision, break it down. Look at your choices from these different angles when you have the happy problem of deliberating between two job opportunities.

 The Job

Is this is something you can actually see yourself doing? Is it a challenge? Can you do it in your sleep? Does it make you want to run in the opposite direction? Use your answers as clues to solve your conundrum.


As in, is there room for career growth? Or will you be stuck in the same position for years, like a bad yoga class? Ouch.

Trains, Planes & Automobiles

Ponder your commute. Your journey to work costs both time and money. Remember time is money, so your commute costs money and money. Think about it.


Are you all about that suit and tie or do you like to rock a flannel like nobody’s business? Maybe you’re extremely attracted to ping-pong tables and company-wide snack breaks. As opposed to cubicle-squatting and power lunches, that is. Figure out which gig is gonna float your boat on the river of company culture.

Jobs can come with little perks here and there (think free Vitamin Waters and discount movie tickets), or big perks that you don’t get for 30 years (think 401k). What’s important to you right now and later?

Ca$h Money

When you really get down to brass tacks, income matters. Especially if you have racked up a nice amount of debt to earn your degree. Can you survive on the money being offered?

Just Do It

If you’re still feeling ambivalent after you mull things over, it may be time to just jump. Designate each job as heads or tails. Flip a coin. Check your gut reaction after you see the results. Sometimes you need to be pushed into a decision to realize which choice you don’t really want. Either go with the flip, or don’t. That should do it.

Myth vs. Facts: Landing a Job in Public Relations & Corporate Communications

Public relations is a term that means just what it says. As a career professional in this field, your job is to handle all facets of your client in the public arena. You and your agency or corporate communication department colleagues represent the organization internally and externally.  In this blog post we will discuss some truths and some myths about public relations and corporate communication careers.

Myth #1: Strong writing skills and a degree alone will get you the interview.

Fact: In this industry, having a digital footprint or profile does a lot for you. The job market within this industry is fruitful, but it’s still tough to stand out from the crowd. Having an ACTIVE blog, Twitter feed, and/or web page that discusses industry-related events help position you as a leader. The employer will see you already are doing what they will pay you to do. Apply knowledge learned from your classes to examine current public relations issues. Last year alone, such high-profile organizations like the NFL, NBA, Target, Macy’s, and more were the objects of bad PR. Use this as an opportunity to present your ideas in an “If I were in charge of PR, I would…” fashion.

Myth #2Public relations is solely about being a publicist.

Fact: Public relations has evolved far beyond managing the perception and image of celebrities and companies. It is at the point where most large organizations have a corporate communication department within their executive suites. Large or small, in this day of the 24/7 information age every company is involved in PR in some way. The power of social media has placed even more emphasis on this staff function. Even governments look to public relations and corporate communication professionals to handle their branding and positioning.  The current Iran-Israel nuclear issue is a prime example of high-level public relations issue.

Myth #3: PR is all about the “spin.”

Fact: As Bob Noltenmeier, Clinical Assistant Professor at the NYU School of Professional Studies Public Relations and Corporate Communication graduate program, said, “True PR can be extremely blatant, obvious and in your face, or really subtle to the point where you don’t know it’s happening. That is where social science and psychology comes in—and that’s the kind of public relations we prefer and that really works. Every day in PR, you are either reinforcing positive attitudes or changing negative ones.”

Many career opportunities exist within the corporate communications and public relations field; in fact, it’s among the fastest growing professions. If you enter the field with the right skills—writing, presenting, understanding business and having a strong interest in news and public affairs–you will work for an agency, corporation, government entity, non-profit or your own consultancy.

Myths vs. Facts: The Truth About Landing a Job in Media


Myth #1: Careers in media often involve partying and meeting celebrities.

Fact: While working in media may give you exposure to exciting opportunities to meet a variety of people in the entertainment industry, when working for a media company, you are expected to remain professional at all times. Additionally, extensive hard work goes into events, and festivals including plenty of strategy meetings to ensure everything goes according to plan. Make sure to set your expectations accordingly!

Myth #2: You have to spend a long time in unpaid internships or in assistant roles.

Fact: These days, forward thinking companies recognize the value of young talent with fresh perspectives. Basic administrative tasks are part of any role, particularly those at entry level. However, it is worth doing research through sites like and using your network to learn about these innovative companies that are willing to include interns and entry-level employees in career development activities. Voice your interest in participating in creative initiatives and be ready to jump at any opportunity to partake in strategic meetings.

Myth #3: The only way to a media position is through connections.

Fact: It is true that networking is extremely important in searching for positions in the media industry, and it is common for students to find positions through alumni, professors, friends, and previous colleagues. However in the media industry, creativity and innovation trickle down through the structure all the way to the hiring process. Although connections may serve you well, creative and innovative companies such as the ones that exist in the media industry use social media to find new and interesting talent. Curate your social networking platforms such as Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr and Linkedin to help build your online presence.  Additionally, build your brand by developing an online resume to advertise your skills with links to your various online portfolios to provide readily accessible work samples. Social media is becoming more and more popular in the media industry to discover new talent, so ensure you are maintaining your networks accordingly!

Myth #4: Careers in Media are just about TV and Film.

Fact: There are a number of valuable career opportunities in media in additional areas such as print, journalism, magazines and publishing. Although you may not be as familiar with these industries, go outside your comfort zone and expand your job search to encompass these companies. Maximize your potential by exploring companies outside of those you might typically consider as ‘in your field’.

 Learn more about the hospitality industry by attending this Wasserman Center event:

All About Books: Panel on Writing, Publishing and Multimedia – Monday, April 20, 2015, 6pm-8pm, 20 Cooper Square, 7th Floor. 

Wasserman Center Internship Grant Summer 2015 FAQ

ARCHIVED: For updated information about the Wasserman Center Internship Grant, click here.

Still thinking of applying to the $1,000 Wasserman Center Internship Grant, but have some questions? Not to worry, see below! For any questions not covered below, please email us at

Top Wasserman Center Internship Grant FAQs

  1. What is the Wasserman Center Internship Grant?
  2. Who is eligible?
  3. Is this internship only for students interning in not-for-profit organizations?
  4. When are the deadlines?
  5. If I have already applied, can I reapply to the WCIG?
  6. How can I apply?
  7. I recently started interning and my supervisor doesn’t know me well. Should he/she fill out the supervisor form?
  8. I have more than one internship and together I reach the eligibility requirements. Can I still apply?
  9. When are decisions made and checks mailed?


1. What is the Wasserman Center Internship Grant?

The Wasserman Center Internship Grant (WCIG) was established to provide financial assistance to students pursuing non-paying internships in the arts, education, public service, not-for-profits and within other industries that do not traditionally pay their interns. Typically, the Wasserman Center is able to offer approximately 100-120 $1,000 grants during the fall, spring, and summer terms. Applications are reviewed by the Wasserman Center Internship Grant Committee and representatives from various NYU academic departments.

 2. Who is eligible?

Students must meet the following criteria to be eligible for a grant in the summer:

  • Undergraduate or graduate students currently enrolled in degree granting programs at NYU with at least a 3.0 GPA
  • Work a minimum of 20 hours per week for 8 weeks at a non-paying internship at a not-for-profit organization or within an industry that does not traditionally pay their interns in the US or abroad
  • Students must secure the internship prior to the application deadline

3. Is this internship only for students interning in not-for-profit organizations?

No. The WCIG is awarded to students interning at organizations that do not traditionally pay their interns which include the arts, fashion, media and journalism, etc.

4. When are the deadlines?

In general, the deadlines for the WCIG (NYC and Global) are as follows for each semester:





Late September Early November


Mid/Late February Late March / Early April


Mid June Mid June (same application as US)


For the specific deadline, refer to the NYU CareerNet Job posting for the current semester. For Summer 2015, the Job ID# is 967073.

5. If I have already applied, can I reapply to the WCIG?  

If you have applied in the past, whether you did or did not receive the grant, you are able to apply as long as you meet the eligibility requirements.

6. Where and how can I apply?

To apply:

  • Log into NYU CareerNet
  • Download the attached word documents (Application and Supervisor Form) and provide the requested information.
  • Go to the “Jobs” tab to access the Wasserman Center Internship Grant posting – you can search “967073” in the keywords section.
  • Save as separate documents (PDF) and upload them in the “documents” section of NYU CareerNet.
  • After Application, Supervisor Form, and Resume are uploaded, click “APPLY” and select these documents from the drop down menu.
  • Complete required survey at this link:

7. I recently started interning and my supervisor doesn’t know me well. Should he/she fill out the supervisor form?

The supervisor form is not due until the deadline; therefore, you can wait to send in the form. If your supervisor does not feel s/he has sufficient information, it is fine for supervisors to make recommendations based off of what they have currently observed. They may also want to include some thoughts concerning the criteria used in selecting you for your internship.

8. I have more than one internship and together I reach the eligibility requirements. Can I still apply?

Yes, you may apply as long as both internships are non-paying. You should submit  an application (make sure you list both internships and the number of hours and weeks you spend at each) and 2 Supervisor Authorization forms (one from each supervisor).

9. When are decisions made and checks mailed?

In general, decisions are made 1 month after the deadline. For Summer 2015, WCIG decisions will be released on July 21, 2015. In general, checks are mailed approximately 10 business days after decisions are made. For Summer 2015, checks will be mailed around August 5, 2015.

Myths vs. Facts: Landing a Job in Engineering


MYTH #1: Engineering students have no social lives and therefore cannot develop or use social skills during college.

Fact: Engineers today need to think of themselves as leaders, not anti-social people. A college graduate with an engineering degree is approximately six times more likely than a graduate with a business degree to become a CEO of an S&P 500 corporation – and not just among traditional engineering companies. ExxonMobil may be headed by an engineer (Rex Tillerson, BSCE), as is Texas Instruments (Richard Templeton, BSEE), and Raytheon (William Swansen, BSIE), but engineers are also running financial institutions like Wells Fargo (Richard Kavacevich, BSIE) and insurance giants like Progressive (Glenn Renwick, BSME).

MYTH #2: Industrial Engineering is not of use in today’s economy.

Fact: Industrial engineers find ways to eliminate wastefulness in production processes. They devise efficient ways to use workers, machines, materials, information, and energy to make a product or provide a service. Depending on their tasks, industrial engineers work both in offices and in the settings they are trying to improve. For example, when observing problems, they may watch workers assembling parts in a factory or staff carrying out their tasks in a hospital. When solving problems, they may be in an office at a computer looking at data that they or others have collected. Industrial engineers figure out ways to manufacture parts and products, or to deliver services, with maximum efficiency, a much needed skill and career. The key for engineering students looking to get into Industrial Engineering, as with any field, is to make themselves marketable. The first step is to have your resume and cover letter in proper order and the next few steps involve taking advantage of your school resources and networking as much as possible.

MYTH #3: Engineers aren’t creative individuals.

Fact: Engineers are creative problem solvers and their line of work requires minds that are inclined toward both creative and logical thought. It’s a balancing act they’ve mastered that comes in handy during the design and brainstorming phase of a project. When served with a task or problem, engineers understand the logical principles and applications that frame reality all the while deploying their creative juices to come up with groundbreaking plans. In the words of renowned dancer and choreographer, Twyla Tharp, “before you can think out of the box, you have to start with a box.” Engineers rely on their understanding of the boundaries surrounding projects before their creative minds figure out a way to break those boundaries and bring about innovative solutions. If you are interested in seeing how national and global fellowships can help finance your creative  projects, click here.

MYTH #4: Engineers have to love math to be good at it.

Fact: Engineers need to be good at math but that doesn’t necessarily mean they love the subject. The subject is merely a valuable tool on their journey toward an answer to a question. Many engineers do not enjoy math but they stick with it in order to reach what they love most: a solution. This relentless trait shows a sense of resolve, the ability to take on difficult and unpleasant responsibilities without quitting. It’s a trait coveted by employers worldwide. If you would like to take advantage of upcoming networking opportunities to meet the very employers looking to recruit students with this trait, make sure to do so through On Campus Recruitment.

Maximize your job search in the Engineering/Technology/Computer Science/Info Systems/Construction Management/Entrepreneurship industries by attending these events:

Resumes and Cover Letters That Work, April 16th, 1:00pm – 2:00pm  

Acing the Interview, April 20th, 3:00pm-4:00pm

On Campus Recruitment, April 29th, 4:30pm – 5:30pm

Business School Full-time? Learn the Benefits.

Jeffrey Miller is the Director of GMAT instruction for Target Test Prep.  Jeff has over 8 years of experience in the business of helping students with low GMAT scores hurdle the seemingly impossible, helping them achieve the scores they need to get into the top 20 business school programs in the world including; HBS, Stanford, Wharton, and Colombia.  Jeff has cultivated many successful business school graduates through his GMAT instruction, and will be a pivotal resource for many more to follow.

Let’s face it. The economy has been looking bleak for a while now. Whether you’re fresh out of college or already working full-time, you’ve likely spent more than one sleepless night wondering what the rising unemployment rates might mean for your future. Will you land a job that can help you achieve your financial goals and allow you to start paying off that mountain of student loan debt you’ve acquired? Will you ever get a promotion so that you can actually start saving some of what you earn?

Many college grads and young professionals are facing these same tough questions, and some of them are turning to business school for the answers. If you’ve ever wondered what an MBA might do for your future, consider some of the benefits of going to business school full-time.

Career Advancement

Not all industries are experiencing the same backlash from the recession. If you’re having a hard time scoring a decent job or are worried that you’re in a dead-end position in your current career, then business school admission just may be the solution. According to a survey conducted this year by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC)—the 2014 Global Management Education Graduate Survey—57% of MBA graduates received job offers immediately after graduation. And these aren’t your run-of-the-mill entry-level positions. Furthermore, according to GMAC’s Alumni Perspective Survey, alumni consistently rise to higher professional levels, earn more and give high marks to the value of their education.

The Focus Factor

Despite the encouraging statistics surrounding business school these days, the field is still a competitive one. As more and more people are looking for a way out of their less-than-flourishing careers, competition is destined to become even fiercer. Those who choose to put their lives on hold and give it their all by investing in a full-time MBA program will likely have a distinct advantage. The luxury of focusing all of your time and energy on school rather than struggling to keep up with both a job and business classes will no doubt pay off in the form of higher grades and better references. These are exactly the types of things that will set you apart from the rest when graduation day arrives and companies begin choosing new hires.

Networking Opportunities

Taking yourself out of the rat race for a couple of years to get your MBA in business may sound like a scary proposition. You may think you’ll lose some traction and get out of touch with the real world of business. Fortunately for newly-enrolled business students, nothing could be further from the truth. By immersing yourself in school, you’ll benefit from not only the latest information and trends, but you’ll also have the advantage of making new connections. If you’ve ever tried to go it alone on the job front, then you’ve probably realized that often, it really is about who you know, not what you know.

Despite the clear benefits of a full-time MBA program, deciding whether or not to attend business school is still a big decision. There’s business school tuition to think about, student loan interest (which you likely won’t be able to pay while you’re in school), and of course, the question of which business school to attend. While these are all personal choices that only you can make, it always pays to do your homework. Be sure to spend some time researching MBA programs and to perform a cost-benefit analysis before deciding whether becoming a business school graduate is the right choice for you.

If you do decide to embark on the journey to an MBA, you can increase your odds of getting into the MBA business school of your choice by acing the GMAT.  Another important point to keep in mind is that your GMAT score will last for 5 years, so if you are a Junior or Senior now, and you know you want to attend business school within a few years after graduation, you are in the best possible place RIGHT NOW to start prepping for your GMAT.  After 8 years of teaching the GMAT, I can honestly say that the early bird definitely gets the worm.  Too many students wait until they are 26 or 27 to start studying for the exam, only to have to balance that with a 10- to 12-hour workday.  By getting the GMAT out of the way now, you will be able to focus on the other parts of your business school application that will help you stand out.


Thinking About Graduate Business School and the GMAT? Are you considering getting your MBA? Looking for information on the GMAT? Please join Jeff Miller of Target Test Prep to learn more about the GMAT test and the process of applying to business school. Tuesday, April 14th | 2:00- 3:00pm, Wasserman Center, Presentation Room B. Click here to RSVP.