2011 MBA Applicant Research Results Revealed!

Veritas Prep has just released the results of its 2011 MBA applicant survey! Part of the work we do in monitoring admissions trends is staying current on what applicants are thinking, which is why we call call our new white paper, “Inside the Minds of MBA Applicants.” Some of the results this year are very interesting!

The survey of prospective and current business school students was conducted in June and July of 2011 and included responses from 867 individuals. One quarter of participants are currently enrolled in an MBA program; the rest plan to apply to business school in the future. A breakout of select findings:

Motivations for Pursuing an MBA

  • Perhaps reflecting the ongoing and critical impact business has had on the country’s economic circumstances over the past several years, the report found that the motivation for pursuing an MBA cited most often was an interest in business and the way it shapes society (71%), while attaining a prestigious, high-paying job was the motivator for just over half (54%) of respondents.
  • 70 percent of respondents hoped to use their MBA to switch careers, while only 16 percent planned to use the degree to advance in their current career, signaling an extraordinarily high rate of intended employment “churn” upon graduation.

Professional Aspirations and Concerns

  • Leading concerns among current and prospective business school students included finding a long-term career path that appealed to them (73%) and maintaining a healthy work/life balance once they started working (62%). These concerns were closely followed by finding a job that enabled them to pay off their student loan debt (60%).
  • Consulting (25%), management (19%) and banking and finance (18%) continue to be the three most coveted areas in which to land positions upon graduation.

Business School Research and Selection

  • When asked about the most important features in their business school of choice, survey participants indicated that prestige and ranking (82%) was the leading factor, followed closely by networking opportunities (80%) and, at a bit of a distance, academic rigor (65%). Surprisingly, “alumni base,” which was the number three preferred factor last year (77%), was ranked as a priority by only 53 percent of respondents this year.

Want to see the full results? You can download the entire white paper on our site!

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