Financing the Dream: Your First MBA Decision

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Posted by TheMBATour on 04 October 2011 / 0 Comments

By Peter von Loesecke, CEO Managing Director, The MBA Tour

Once you’ve made the commitment to take an MBA, the question that first comes to mind is, “How will I manage it?”

Logistics aside, financing an MBA comes with a hefty price, running $100,000 USD or more. Justifying the cost in today’s economic job market is a reasonable deciding factor. Stay confident. Students from every background and circumstance have found ways to go after their dream and find the perfect job to fit their career goals. By examining how they did it – you can too.

Start at home. Look at your budget and begin with a clean slate if possible. If you’re heavily in debt, consider postponing school until you’ve got a manageable financial plan in place.

Include your family in the decision. Apart from the study time volved, for the next two or three years you could be feasting on hamburgers at home instead of eating out. You need to know everyone is in your corner in cutting costs.

Budget for the length of the program and only with funds you can trust will be there.

Research. Find out what scholarships, loans, and grants could be available to you. This is a business decision as well as a career choice. In the US, federal loans, for instance, have better rates and repayment terms, but they cover only a small percentage of the costs you’ll incur. Bank loans and company sponsorships are options but both come with a price. Interest rates are high at the bank and companies could tie you into a contract for several years after completing the MBA.

Some schools offer scholarships. For North American schools, these are generally available only to North American students. It’s an avenue worth investigating, especially if the school matches all your career criteria as well.

The MBA Tour also provides annual scholarships of $20,000 USD each from monies collected from the tour. These are awarded internationally. Information is available on our website at www.thembatour.com.

Look at which universities offer co-op or part-time MBA programs if working as you study is the option of choice for you.

Often tuition is lower in the state or province that’s home to the student as well.

“For international students, there are opportunities available for scholarships and grants through your home country,” says Peter von Loesecke, CEO and Managing Director of the MBA Tour. He advises exploring government loans and scholarships first before turning to the bank where interest rates are traditionally quite steep. Also, he adds, “Some countries like Australia have more lenient rules for foreign nationals working and going to school simultaneously. It’s well worth your while to explore these opportunities early in your MBA program search.”

As with company sponsored MBAs, foreign government scholarships and loans could depend on your commitment to return to the country once the MBA is completed. They are investing in your education to create more employment and a better economy. Candidates overall are encouraged to look into every avenue available for funding. If financing your MBA is a concern, a sound financial plan will help keep the worry away while you’re concentrating on your studies. Take the MBA Tour Spotlight survey before coming to our event, and during your interview times with the selected schools, discuss how each school can offer you financial guidance.

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