Grad school applicants spend countless hours stressing over the admissions processing and wondering about whether or not they’ll get in, but they tend to forget their next-biggest source of anxiety: If they do get in, how will they pay for the whole thing? To take some of the mystery out of the financial aid process, we’ve just released The Veritas Prep Guide to Graduate School Financial Aid.
This isn’t another “Find 1,000 free loans!” service… Rather, it’s Financial Aid 101 for anyone who is about to start writing some really big checks to attend grad school. It covers grants, merit-based fellowships, subsidized federal loans, and private financing options. All of these should be part of your toolkit as you start to plan how to finance your degree.
The following are four key things you should do, starting now, as you consider how to finance your MBA, MB, or JD:
- Start early, and stay organized. While separate from admissions, the financial aid process is concurrent and equally important. Deadlines should be placed on the calendar and prioritized similar to admissions deadlines, and checklists can be very valuable in keeping everything organized.
- Doggedly search for outside funding. Searching for outside scholarships is often something that slips past graduate school applicants compared to their undergraduate counterparts. Scholarships, fellowships and writing competitions for graduate students are often listed on school websites, while independent websites also collate these opportunities.
- Carefully review the financial aid opportunities at every school of interest. While applicants generally apply to multiple schools, most applicants do not perform a thorough search of the scholarships and fellowships offered at each of the schools to which they are applying. This simple step of due diligence may reveal students qualify for a cost-savings they were otherwise unaware of.
- Emotions aside, consider the bottom line. Be willing to briefly consider the enrollment decision in purely financial terms. It sounds overly rigid, but considering how emotionally most students make their decisions, it will help balance things out to take a short period of time to consider the enrollment decision the way an accountant would.
You can download the full report for free here. If you want more help in getting into business school, law school, or medical school, call us at (800) 925-7737 and speak with a Veritas Prep admissions expert today!
Veritas Prep has released a white paper examining the results of its first annual survey of admissions officers at the top 30 business schools in the United States.
“Trends in MBA Admissions: Perceptions of Admissions Officers at Top 30 Business Schools” highlights notable findings from the Veritas Prep Survey of MBA admissions officers, an eight-week online survey conducted among the top 30 U.S. business schools, according to BusinessWeek’s rankings. Responses from admissions officers on topics ranging from student selection criteria to the future of the MBA application revealed a series of considerations that any b-school applicant should heed, including:
- Almost half of respondents report that the number of admits straight out of college has increased compared to five years ago, partly reflecting a push by many top MBA programs to attract younger applicants.
- Among desired changes that admissions officers would like to see in their applicant pool, diversity ranks number one.
- Among applicant traits and characteristics, analytical skills rank as the most important, far ahead of any other characteristic such as leadership and community service.
Despite the increased demand for graduate business education stemming from the current economic slowdown and other contributing factors, the savvy business school applicant is in a unique position to secure a coveted seat in a leading MBA program through some additional due diligence. Understanding what wows and irritates admissions officers at leading business schools, and tailoring the MBA application accordingly, can propel one
In response to the ever-worsening economy, we have just released a guide to help recently laid-off business school applicants overcome their career setbacks and gain admissions to the world’s most competitive MBA programsThe Laid-Off Professional’s Guide to MBA Admissions gives you specific, step-by-step instructions for how you can overcome the setback of a job loss and still shine in MBA admissions eyes.
The key themes that you will want to emphasize in your application include:
- Now is the right time. You should explain that the decision to apply is the result of a well-conceived plan, not the knee-reaction of someone who fears a period of unemployment underemployment. If admissions officers sense that you’re in the latter camp, they will likely pass over your application and move on to candidates with more compelling reasons for wanting to earn an MBA.
- You are a star, not a victim. Essays, letters of recommendation and admission interviews will allow you to highlight multiple professional success stories. Pointing to career achievements paints the picture of a perennial winner who just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time when jobs had to be cut.
- You made lemonade out of lemons. Did you use your new-found free time to volunteer or take a night class to hone skill areas? While reporting on these accomplishments may seem less attractive than boasting about a position on the corporate ladder, admissions officers appreciate it when applicants demonstrate productivity during any extended period of time off between jobs.
This white paper is the first installment of The Veritas Prep Recovery Series, a collection of white papers devoted to helping business school applicants who need to overcome certain weaknesses or blemished in their backgrounds.
The The Laid-Off Professional’s Guide to MBA Admissions is available for free download here. If you have recently lost your job, or are afraid you will, don’t worry… We’re here to help!