Chat with MBA Admissions — August 9, 2011
Thanks for joining us. We look forward to your questions about the Rady School and our MBA programs
How are GPA's weighed in admission consideration? I've taken various courses at a community college, but did not transfer the credit to my undergraduate institution.
We don't have a formal system for weighing the different elements of an application, and we do look at any educational background you have. If those community college classes are information you think we should consider, please send us the transcripts. Overall, we're interested in your intellectual and academic preparation for graduate study, and we'd want to see anything that provides useful information on that.
Why is the tuition so expensive?
Overall tuition and fees are really driven by the costs of providing an excellent level of instruction by skilled and knowledgeable faculty, and by the costs of program support in areas like academic advising, career services, etc. As you probably know, many public universities in the US are facing declining levels of government financial support, which has necessitated tuition increases. That's been true here in California.
Do courses at Rady predominantly use the case study model, lecture, or a combination of both?
Rady faculty use a variety of instructional methods, based on the nature of the subject matter. Cases are often used, and are especially prevalent in subject areas like marketing, leadership, management and organizational behavior, and in strategy and innovation.
As far as different concentrations go: Do you need to be accepted into the program before deciding on a concentration?
We don't have formal concentrations. You may choose from electives based on your educational and career interest: that may lead you to focus in a functional area like marketing or finance - or it might lead you to take a broad selection of electives.
From a career transition standpoint, could you discuss the strengths and weakness of the Full-Time vs FlexMBA program?
There are several ways to look at this - and there's not an obvious, single, right answer. So, let me make some suggestions, and then you may want to consult individually with us on your goal. First, Full-Time is certainly more of an immersion, and it allows you to walk away from your current job/career and explore new directions. If you're interested in very significant career change, this can be a benefit. On the other hand, if you are in an industry you're interested in, or have substantial amount of professional experience, you may benefit from staying connected to that world and your current organization, and use that as the launching pad for moving towards more business-focused or more senior roles. Our career center is fully available to all our students, and has a targeted set of programs and activities for our Flex students.
Are there any major differences between the two FlexMBA options? Do students prefer one program over another (is one more highly populated)?
The fundamental curriculum is the same and our Rady faculty teaches across all the programs. The FlexWeekend cohort is typically more experienced (10 yrs of experience on average vs about 7 yrs for the FlexEvening group). FlexWeekend students like the fact that they are intensively together and learning - a bit like being a Full-Time student two weekends a month. FlexEvening students value the slightly slower pace of the coursework, the fact that they don't need to get time off from work. The FlexEvening cohort is slightly larger - we think that has to do with the "no time off from work" component.
In looking at prospective schools, I've been looking at both MBA's as well as well as Master's in Tourism Management. Would Rady be able to offer specific Tourism/ Hotel Management courses during my MBA or would I need to look elsewhere?
No, we do not have specific courses in tourism or hotel management. You would find that all the fundamentals of the MBA curriculum would be applicable to this industry sector. What you'll want to ask yourself is whether you're looking for a strong general management education that will prepare you for a broad set of business opportunities - or whether you're entirely focused on this sector and want/need very specific, focused courses.
What types of coursework do you recommend applicants take before applying to Rady?
The only academic prerequisite for the Rady MBA program is a year of college calculus. Otherwise, we don't suggest you take any specific courses - Rady faculty teaching in the core curriculum know they will have a broad spectrum of student backgrounds in the class and believe this is educationally valuable.
In regards to the year of college calculus, do you mean a full year (i.e. 3 quarters/courses) worth?
Yes, this is ideal. If you don't have this, we recommend you start working on it now- this is easiest to do through a local community college wherever you are. It is a requirement for matriculation, not for application or admission. In some instances, if you have some but not a year's worth when you apply, we will require a Math for Management summer (on-line) program as a make-up.
Our goal with the calculus requirement and the summer Math program is to be sure that everyone is fully prepared for the quantitative elements of the program when school starts.
In regards to the Lab to Market course, can we expect a well rounded course on the topic of entrepreneurism, or is it specifically focused on bringing innovation to the market place, but not necessarily through your own business?
The educational goal of Lab to Market (L2M) s to educate entrepreneurially minded managers and leaders, with a particular emphasis on industry sectors that are driven by innovation. We believe that entrepreneurism and intrapreneurism are pretty closely related in some dimensions. As a course sequence, L2M looks at both of these dimensions, and there are always both types of student projects.
One of the most important things you learn in L2M is how to evaluate potential opportunities and innovations and decide whether they are worth pursuing: students are directly responsible for this process in the course sequence. Rady provides lots of access to potential projects, but we don't evaluate them or vet them - students have the responsibility of deciding whether an invention or innovation is worth pursuing.
From the employment statistics it looks like the majority of graduates go on to work in the health care/biotech/pharma and technology sectors. How strong are Rady's connections to finance and management consulting? Do these types of companies participate in on-campus recruiting throughout the first year?
We see less student interest in these areas. We do have a few such firms that come to career fairs, do company presentations, career panels, and our career center has strong relationships with many firms and can facilitate connections. The first week of career center activity each year focuses on these two areas. If you are interested, you need to get started very early in your internship and career searches.
Part of what we see is strong student interest in staying in San Diego - or at last on the West Coast. San Diego has a good deal of alternative finance, but it's not an investment banking hub or a location for the major strategy consulting firms.
We haven't received any other questions, so we'll go ahead and close this chat. Thanks for joining us today - and do stay in touch. Please email MBA Admissions if you have other questions - or join us on another chat or connect with us here on campus or talk to one of our Admissions team on the road this fall.