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Useful Tips For Older MBA Applicants

The average age of business school candidates has been declining over the past few years. However, there are still many applicants who wish to pursue an MBA in their 30s. While younger applicants have to convince admissions committees about the quality of their work experience, older applicants also face challenges when justifying their decision to pursue an MBA at a later stage in their career. This article provides a few useful tips for older applicants.

An older applicant will undoubtedly have more work experience than most other applicants. However, it’s important that the candidate demonstrates career progression. This can be either by formally rising through the ranks or fulfilling increasing responsibilities within a position. An applicant who hasn’t progressed professionally will find it difficult to defend their candidacy against younger candidates with less work experience.

One of the key things that business schools look for in MBA applicants is their leadership potential. However, older candidates are more likely to have significant leadership experience. While this is a positive, it also means that they need to convince admissions committees that an MBA will, in fact, not only contribute to their knowledge and further hone their leadership skills but also play a key role in helping them achieve their professional dreams.

When an MBA applicant has 10 years of work experience, it also means that they completed their education that many years ago. Hence, they need to be mentally prepared to move back into the academic paradigm. They also need to be able to convince the admissions committee that not only do they retain their thirst for knowledge after all these years but also have the capacity to immerse themselves into an intensive educational experience.

Perhaps the most important question that older MBA aspirants need to ask themselves is whether they should be pursuing a full-time or a part-time or an executive MBA. They need to take into consideration the stage of their career, their professional goals, and their personal situation when taking the decision. This, in fact, is also a question that the business school will often pose to applicants with work experience in excess of 10 years or so.


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