Freshly graduated? I know the feeling. A day of feeling accomplished followed by a race for the best possible MBA colleges. But what really defines a good college? Is it just the ranking we see on various websites and journals? Should we blindly follow what everyone else is doing? If yes, then where is the X factor that we keep hearing about? What’s so special about us that makes us different from the crow we are competing with?
Or is there more to it? Of course there is. Now I know choosing a good college can put a lot of pressure on us. And why not? It basically paves way for the rest of our lives. And many times you’ll hear your elders talking about how if you don’t get into an IIM or some cream college, your life is over. We hear that so much that we actually start believing it. But let’s stop and think for ourselves…is it really true? The answer is no. You are the only one who decides how your life is going to pan out. Yes a good college is an added advantage, but let’s not start giving up just yet.
This brings me to my earlier question. What defines a good MBA college? Well, following are 10 points that, in my opinion, are ‘must have’ in a good college and why I chose IBS Gurgaon. Check these out before you take a leap of faith.
- Academic structure-While I was looking for a college I was sure to check out its academic structure. It is essential that the curriculum of the college should be competent and rigorous enough to push you to achieve your highest potential. This information can be easily available on the websites of the college and brochures.
- Extra co-curricular activities- Some of us might not be too much into extra curriculars, but believe me, you cannot neglect it and hope for an overall development. Being an admirer of the arts, one of my major concerns was about the clubs that my college had and I was pleasantly surprised that it had about 19 of them! It is a great way to tap into a student’s interests.
- Practical knowledge- Just like all of you, I had about 18 years of theoretical knowledge and wasn’t very keen about getting 2 years worth more of it. Therefore,I looked for a college that gave the practical approach its due importance. Making students create and present various projects is an effective way of making them come out of their shells. Not just that, IBS Gurgaon makes sure that the group members are constantly rotated to get them comfortable with working in teams.
- Industrial visits- Familiarising the students with how the industry works is essential so that they can put whatever they havelearnt into perspective. And you’d be surprised at how efficiently these industries have to work in order to compete in the market. On one such visit to mother dairy, I could not help but marvel at how something as small as a carton of milk, has to go through a series of complicated processes before it reaches the market. And the scale of the operations was wondrous!
- Guest lecturers– Knowledge being passed on by experienced and well established professionals in the various fields of an industry is a treat to a student hoping for a bright career. So I also looked at the various guest lecturers that came to the college to talk to the students.
- Return on investment- Well…its just another term for what we look at first while comparing the colleges- placement packages. What we fail to realise quite often, is that we must compare and weigh them according to the investment made. For example, if a college demands a fee of 7 lacks for two years and provides you the opportunity to get a job that pays about 5-8 lacks per annum, I would say its a decent deal. I use the word opportunity because at the end of the day its your own potential that gets you a job. A college is merely there to help you reach your goal. Brand value is another factor you may want to consider.
- Faculty support-I believe that the support of the faculty of any college plays a vital role in the development of a student and how he performs. Accessibility, not only in classes but also outside of them is very important. My college, for example, has a great practice of allocating a mentor to each student where they can voice their concerns in a one on one chat without any hesitation. I think this sense of security goes a long way in helping people find their confidence.
- Summer internship opportunities- Summer internships are an indispensable part of your MBA life. The right exposure can turn into a great opportunity. So checking out the companies that come to college for internships is very important. One of them just might be your future employer!
- Alumni network- Finding out how spread out the alumni network of a college is- as well as how they are doing in their respective professions- can give you a fair idea about the college.
- Extra opportunities-I would also advise you to observe if the college takes any extra initiatives to give their students an edge that other colleges might not. I was constantly on a lookout for such opportunities- an online internship or volunteering maybe- that would give my resume an X-factor. Never had i expected that such an opportunity would present itself right where I was. I was able to apply and get selected for an internship with my college, without having to compromise with my studies. Now that’s something you don’t find everywhere!
After having considered these points, I’m sure you’ll be able to make an informed decision. Good Luck future managers and choose wisely!
Class of 2018