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Never too old for a Masters degree, says 29-year-old IT engineer: MS in USA with scholarship

The common belief is that a masters degree (MS) is meant for students without work experience. And that’s the kind of class profile you’ll come across in many top MS programs too.

But there’s no age limit to apply for masters degrees in USA and other countries. As long as you can demonstrate your purpose and seriousness in your MS statement of purpose.

For 29-year-old Naveen Saikrishna, it was never of question of whether he was too old for a masters degree abroad. However he did think quite a bit on choosing between a Masters in SCM degree versus MBA.
(Here’s another student’s account of her decision for MBA or MS in USA at 30 after 6 years of work experience )

He was also running out of time, as he was applying in the third round (not a good idea) and had yet to take his GMAT (not a good idea at all!).

Never too old for a Masters degree in USA

Top MS with scholarship in third round

by Naveen Saikrishna

Never too old for a Masters degree

During my childhood, I used to be in the top 3 in class. I used to love Mathematics and Science.

Like most other Indian 10th standard students in India, I went on to take IIT coaching, along with the regular +1 and +2 classes, without any second thought.

I was not successful in cracking the IIT-JEE and could only manage to get into the Extended Merit List. I was quite depressed about the result.

However, as I could manage to get a good rank in the state level engineering entrance exam, I chose to join Computer Science and Engineering in one of the best engineering colleges in Coastal Andhra (Vizag).

Later, I completed my Engineering with a decent percentage, and I was already placed in TCS in 3rd year itself.

After working for 2 years in the IT industry, with the aim of studying in premier institutes such as IIMs in India, I gave the CAT exam. I couldn’t get enough percentile to get into the top 3 IIMs as a general category candidate.

I gave up the idea of taking CAT and went on to enjoy coding / programming for some time.

After gaining 3.2 years of industry experience, I joined Infosys and fortunately got my first international assignment to Belgium, where I worked with one of the top auto-mobile manufacturers in the world.

I used to work in an IT block near the huge logistics factory of the company. I was amazed to see such a large logistics warehouse.

Later, I worked for a big investment bank in London before I finally decided to go for an MBA or Masters abroad, as I felt I have gained good international exposure already.

Initially, I wanted to do a full-time two-year MBA. But at the age of 29 and with around 7 years of industry experience, I thought it would be better if I could look out for ONLY one-year courses like Masters in SCM (MSCM) or Tech MBA or one year MBA in USA.

I wanted to a strike a good balance between my quantitative skills and my natural interest towards consumer goods (reason being – I worked in our own family grocery store business in my free time).

Hence, I chose MSCM, having weighed on factors such as cost of attendance, length of the program, IT-Male-Engineer pool etc.

The added advantage is that MSCM is a STEM course unlike the MBA courses.

I was in a position in which I couldn’t dedicate time to prepare for my GMAT when I was working in London. My GMAT preparation was so irregular that I didn’t get confidence in attempting before December.

However, I gained a bit more confidence and could get 700 in my second attempt.

I used GMAT Club and signed up for Empower GMAT online course. It’s always better to prepare regularly for GMAT/GRE without having to rush at the end.

As I scheduled the GMAT just a week before the 3rd deadline, I had only around 2 weeks left to prepare the applications. I wanted to give my best shot this year, rather than re-applying next year.

Hence, I decided to reach out to an admissions consultant.

After reading very positive reviews on Quora, I wrote an email to the MBA Crystal Ball (MCB) team explaining my case and about the time-crunch situation I was in.

Manish Gupta was quick in picking up my case, and later I signed up for one school package.

MG had an hour-long call with me to get to know me and understand why I chose this course at this university.

In my first conversation itself, MG gave me a clear picture of how the application process works with MCB.

He was very open about the fact that I had to write my admission essays on my own and they would only provide their feedback by giving constructive inputs.

He even double-checked with me before I paid for their services, giving me a feel that they were not running for money.

After I spoke with him, there were many useful points about me came up that were helpful in clearing my apprehensions about the application process and in boosting my confidence.

A well-structured approach in drafting the essays made my essays look better after every successive draft.

I applied only to MSCM program at Ross.

I thought of applying to MIT SCM program, but I didn’t have much time left out to complete their application.

I chose the Ross School of Business as it is consistently ranked in top 10 in the US.

MG suggested me to approach the alumni and current students, just to make sure I learn more about the student clubs, alumni, careers etc, which would eventually help me in building my essays.

I learned so many points which are not readily available online in the school’s website.

I was invited to attend a 30-minute video interview by the admissions team at Ross. I was posed general questions related to my background, work experience, challenging situation at work etc.

I received an admit from the Ross after around 3 weeks. I was pretty happy to receive a decent amount of scholarship as well.

I accepted their offer and looking forward to their well renowned program that would help me in my career as well as grow personally in the global world.

I can’t suggest anything more than this one point out of my application experience – always start early!

And get the most out of the MBA Crystal Ball consulting team – they are helpful, passionate and truthful.

Also read:
MIT vs Ross MSCM with scholarship: Review of 2 top SCM degrees
MIT Supply Chain Management (SCM) Master’s Program Review
Top masters in SCM admit in USA with low GMAT
MBA after 30: Am I too old for a full-time bschool degree?

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Manish Gupta
About Manish Gupta
Chief Consulting Officer at MBA Crystal Ball, ex-McKinsey, IIT & ISB topper. MG can help you get into the top B-schools. Read more about this top MBA admissions consultant. Connect with MG on Email. Or follow on Linkedin, Facebook.

16 thoughts on “Never too old for a Masters degree, says 29-year-old IT engineer: MS in USA with scholarship”

  1. Hey MG,
    I am a student of 3rd yr with computer science branch.And i want to do MS in computer science.So after completing my graduation can i go for gre.
    and how much time i have to give to this and i how to prepare for it.I had seen different supplements for preparation but i m confused

  2. Hi
    I just completed my UG in Bsc statistics I would like to pursue Msc Data science from MIT. Could you please tell me what are the requirements?

  3. Hey Manish,
    I have 4 year experience then a gap of 2 years. Now I am looking to do MS from abroad , would there be any peculiarities while doing so due to gap?

  4. Hi I completed my if in civil engineering I want to do my ms in business analytics or Mis can you suggest me how are h1 for these branches and any relavent suggestions for me to what branch I should select please answer I have to apply in 10 days to 20 days to this spring please suggest me best opportunities and high paying aspect fields

  5. Hi, I have completed CA in year 2017 & have worked for 6 years in a bank in Corporate Credit/Loans. Presently I am working in Risk management Division of the Bank from last 1 year in Credit Risk. Now I want to pursue Masters in Risk Management/ Business Analytics from Canada/UK/US and want to settle abroad thereafter. Please suggest me which college to join for these type of courses and can I get Assistantship/scholarship during the course?

  6. Hi, I have a overall work experience of 9 years into IT and I wish to take up Master of science in advanced computing in order to skill up in the market. I am currently 30 years old, do you think it will be a good to do MS at this time?

    • In general, MS is ideal for those with 0-2 years of experience. However, if you do go down this route, make sure you do sufficient research and thinking through like the story on this blog.

  7. Hello Sir,

    I completed my graduation in Electronics and Communication in the year 2013
    I have nearly 6 years of experience as an Automotive engineer ( excluding nearly 1.5 years of gap in between 2014-2016). Now am working in a reputed Automotive company Bangalore

    I have always been interested in Management, So I want to pursue my masters in USA

    I request you to help me on choosing my Master degree (For sure I am not interested in entirely technical)
    Kindly suggest me a course, MBA/MIS or any other such course which involves less of technicalities and more of management

    If you can help me in his I will be interested to join any reputed College in Jan 2022

    Thank you in advance!

  8. Hello @MG,
    I am electronics engineering graduate pass out 2013 and working as a Data warehouse engineer in leading investment bank, I have been involved in mostly technical projects only, currently am not sure whether to go for MBA program or Data Science ML engineer masters .It would be great if you can lend your suggestion on right goal is to move higher up the ladder and with rifgt skillset ,donot mind onsite education and exposure,

    So waiting for your Suggestions and advise.

    • @Vivek. Most/nearly all MS programs are targeted towards those with 0-2 years of experience. There are some exceptions of course. But choose those only if you want and are content with a career that takes you deeper on the technology side of the industry.

      Else, MBA will be a better fit.


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