Should you choose an Indian MBA program over a top international MBA college or Ivy League university? What does a foreign MBA mean from an RoI and post MBA career perspective?
Last unrelated question: What do you see in the photo on the left?
Option 1: An anaconda slowly tightening its grip around an unsuspecting victim’s neck
Option 2: A happy Indian dude who has managed to address the best Indian MBA vs top International MBA dilemma.
If you chose Option 1, your visualisation potential makes you fit to be in creative role and you might be wasting your time aiming for an MBA program. If you chose option 2, accept our sympathies and read on.
International MBA from top college abroad or from India?
Hi, this is Shubhankar Hiran. I graduated from IIT Bombay in 2006 from the 5 year integrated program (B.Tech + M.Tech). Post engineering, I moved to Hong Kong where I worked with Societe Generale for 3 years in their equity derivative sales division. In 2009, I moved back to Mumbai to work with Naandi Foundation, an NGO in their school management program. I quit Naandi in 2011 to join ISB Hyderabad’s class of 2012.
I always knew that I have to do an MBA, and started thinking about it as early as 2008 and scored 710 in my GMAT. Initially, I was targeting top US b-schools. I got a reject from Ann Arbor and LBS in 2010 which led me to rethink my takeaway from an MBA program. One thing, I was sure about was to stay back in Asia post MBA. After introspection and a better understanding of my long-term goals, I decided to apply to only ISB Hyderabad in 2011. While debating between the India Vs International MBA, I had three main considerations in mind:
* Finances: The cheapest MBA in US (Ann Arbor, Michigan) costs $120,000. Even in the best possible case of getting a co-signer in MBA and getting education loan at 6%, it would take at-least 5 years to pay-back in US salary. This would mean staying back in US for 5 years, a stint which I had no interest in doing.
* Opportunity Cost: If I had gone for a 2-year international MBA program in the U.S., it would have meant losing out on the salary and the growth in my company for 2 years. A significant “promotion” post MBA would have been possible only if I remained with the same industry. I was looking for a change in industry and a two year program didn’t seem to add a lot of value. Over the 5 years of work-ex, I realized that experience is the best teacher. Moreover, most of my friends in US MBA colleges did say that 2nd year is relatively easy going. I was not convinced about the utility of a 2 year foreign MBA as the value proposition for 1 additional year was unclear in my mind.
* Post MBA Career: If I came back to India post an US MBA, I was concerned about my RoI. Even at the best of the salaries in India for a MBA graduate, paying back US loans would have meant a drastic cut in my lifestyle.
While analyzing these three main points, I came to realization that a b-school in India would serve to best of my interest. Though I was not completely convinced about a 1 year program, I joined ISB as it offered the best exposure in India at a reasonable fee structure.
There are counter-perspectives to this story too, which drives many Indian applicants to join MBA programs abroad. For some the significant MBA scholarships and graduate assistantship opportunities make the RoI equation significantly better.
Anybody else having a similar dilemma? Do you think there are reasons for and against either option?
Did you know that the species know as Eunectes murinus (pronounced ‘you-necked-us’ for reasons that are now clear from the photo) filed for a name change. They are now known as, well thought you’d have guessed it – anacondas?
You will now have one last urge to look at the photo just to verify if Shubhankar bhai is ok.
Read these ISB blog articles:
– 1 Year MBA Abroad (INSEAD) vs 2 Year MBA in India (IIM)
– All about ISB Hyderabad MBA
– ISB MBA admission with full scholarship
– How the ISB admission process works
– How I got into ISB with scholarship in my third attempt
– ISB Hyderabad admission with low GMAT score of 610
– Is ISB still worth the money and time?