With admissions to MBA colleges in full swing, students would do well to check out various attributes before zeroing in on the right college. A good college not only paves way for a great career ahead but also helps shape a persons character, beliefs, thoughts and a successful life. For choosing the right B-School, it is advisable to keep the following important guidelines in mind:
Approval: Any institution which is offering MBA should be approved by All India Council for Technical Institute (AICTE). There are some institutions which are offering MBA or equivalent courses which are not approved by AICTE. It is an important criterion to undertake a course in AICTE approved institution for national acceptance.
Affiliation: Institutions are either affiliated to a university or are autonomous. Each of the categories has its own advantages and disadvantages. Universities traditionally have a strong foundation and autonomous colleges have the advantage of updating the syllabi as per the need of the industry, on a regular basis.
Faculty: It is advisable to check out whether the B-School has distinguished full-time qualified faculty to provide continuous guidance to the students. Try to find out the ratio between the full time faculty members and the visiting faculty members. Have a look at the kind of guest lectures at the institute that you are thinking of joining. Skilled and experienced faculty is the prime factor for providing quality education and their continuous support brings out best of the talents in the students.
Fee: This is one of the more important criteria and if the institution has a good track record of training and placement, then it brings you the right ROI (Return on Investment). But the fee should not be a make or break criterion for you if the ROI is good. These days, there are numerous banks which offer education loans” on easy terms and that can fulfill the requirements of completing your operating expenses of the course.
Infrastructure: It is essential to visit the campus at least once. Since the students have to spend two years in the institute which they join. They should feel safe, secure and comfortable in the institute. Also, there should be the required facilities in classrooms, library, cafeteria, hostel, internet connectivity, Wi-Fi, labs, etc. Campus should be student friendly and have decent ambience to support studies.
Industry Linkage: The industry linkage of the institute gives you the opportunity to get industrial exposure and expand practical knowledge during the tenure of your course. Location advantage and industry partnerships help in ensuring that students obtain interesting and knowledge-enhancing internships and live projects with reputed companies. These projects help in obtaining desired jobs in future as well.
Location: Location of the B-School is an essential factor to be kept in mind. It is very important that the B-School is located in an area which has a proximity to the industry, education hub and policy making bodies. B-Schools in metro cities are the top choice due to the presence of industrial houses from various sectors.
Placement: Go through the placement record of the B-School. Check the company profiles, sectors of recruitments, average salary, etc. Do not just have a glance into the numbers but the quality of placements too, such as nature, reputation and variety of companies that come to campus for recruitment. This is because if you wish to specialise in a particular stream and work in that field (for example: marketing or finance), then there should be sufficient number of reputed companies from the particular field that have recruited students in the past.
International Exposure: Check on the institute credentials as relating to international exchange programmes. These will be of great advantage while looking for career opportunities abroad. International exposure in student programmes will also provide you the right platform to start your career.
Brand: Brand means a unique distinctiveness, an image or a perception in the minds of the people. A brand is formed over the years when great practices are carried on over and over again for a long tenure and thus creating a rich legacy. A branded B-School will create students as per immediate market requirements for ready acceptance in relevant job profile in reputed organisations. So, it is always recommended to join a ‘branded institution with proper industry backup.
The author is Professor Vikram Tyagi, an IIM Ahmedabad alumnus and industry veteran turned acamedician. He is presently the chief mentor at JK Business School (JKBS), Gurgaon.