Columbia Is a Good Fit for You If…
You have a bit more work experience. While Columbia will review any application that comes in, it can be tougher for younger candidates to be successful here. Those with more work experience might see a favorable outcome. In contrast, its downtown rival, NYU Stern, offers full-ride scholarships to a handful of college seniors each year, called Berkley Scholars, who wish to pursue their MBAs right away.
You’re not changing careers, and you’re in a hurry. As mentioned above, the Columbia J-Term is unique to Columbia (although other schools like Kellogg and Cornell have accelerated programs). It’s not the right option for everyone, but if you are committed to your existing career and just need more skills to advance, or if you’re an entrepreneur or will be returning to a family business, the J-Term can be an ideal choice.
You want to work on Wall Street. This hardly needs to be mentioned, but in case it’s not obvious: Columbia is a major feeder program to the bulge bracket investment banks, hedge funds, and elite financial institutions of the world.
You’re not afraid of commitment. With its unique Early Decision application process, the admissions office is looking for students who are committed to Columbia, and being able to demonstrate school fit and a passion for the program itself will serve you well in the application process.