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INSEAD vs Yale SOM

Got accepted to both and having difficulty deciding which one will be better longer-term. Have 4 years of experience as an equity analyst on the sell side (Hong Kong and Tokyo) and intend to move to the buy side post-MBA (currently undertaking a related pre-MBA internship). Would like to work in either Hong Kong or Singapore long-term but being based out of NYC or London immediately post-MBA would be fine for a few years.

INSEAD has an alliance with Wharton and links to Asia via its Singapore campus but is also heavily focused on consulting. Yale SOM has the Yale network and is on a clear upward trajectory with new dean from Booth, new campus, etc. but currently lags behind the M7 in rankings. It is also gaining momentum in finance sector placements, although this is largely centered on NYC.

Any thoughts on which would be better for buy side placement (ie. equity analyst, junior portfolio manager, etc.)?

Comments (22)

  • WallStreetOasis.com's picture

    I'd say this is really a tough call but I'd lean toward Insead given your goals of living in Singapore/HK long term.

    Insead has a very strong brand globally and Yale is making great strides with their program, I just think it will take years / decades(?) to match Insead's global brand (likely much less to match it in the US though given Yale's strong brand name here).

    Good luck and congrats either way!

  • 7S's picture

    yale is a better known brand, but when it comes to recruiting its not the average joe that's evaluating you

    i think from people in finance, even in HK/singapore, Insead is better known than Yale SOM

  • IlliniProgrammer's picture

    If you want to work in Europe or want to do something technical, INSEAD is a no-brainer. For NYC investment banking, it becomes a much tougher choice.

    Edit: for someone outside New York, I would lean towards INSEAD. Yale has a very nice campus and a well-known name as an undergraduate institution and law school, but it does not really have the same reputation of INSEAD as a B-school.

  • shorttheworld's picture

    for buy side placement.. isnt insead known to be more of a consulting school? youll have all of the hedge funds in fairfield county next door at ysom to badger.. however i dont think either is a big buy side school ;x

  • clever_username's picture

    this is actually tough. if you wanted to work anywhere but Asia, INSEAD would be a clear choice, but i've read in multiple sources (gmatclub, yale students, alumni, outsiders) that the Yale brand is very strong in Asia. Allegedly SOM places extremely well and opens lots of doors (SOM, not just Yale undergrad).

    alumni network is 5kish vs 50kish, but there are pros and cons with that.

    did you look at alumni of both schools - do any of them work in firms where you'd want to work? are there senior people on the buy-side you can speak with? any current SOM students that are going to the buy-side in Asia that can talk about their exp? what about INSEAD?

  • CaliforniaAssociate's picture

    honestly, a lot of ppl in asia never heard of insead, believe or not

  • chipmunk's picture

    purely from an education point of view, I think Yale and the two year format will better serve you since you will have so much more time to choose electives in your area of interest and to learn from NYC monkeys coming to campus.

  • Jackie Chiles's picture

    I don't think you can go wrong with Yale.

    "It's outrageous, egregious, preposterous. "

  • atleastimnotabanker's picture

    Insead has its own campus in Singapore. I find it hard to believe that they dont have a lot of alumni working there

  • Ske7ch's picture

    I believe Yale has no/does not disclose grades.

    - Bulls make money. Bears make money. Pigs get slaughtered.
    - The harder you work, the luckier you become.
    - I believe in the "Golden Rule": the man with the gold rules.

  • In reply to Ske7ch
    Ronaldo7's picture

    Ske7ch:
    I believe Yale has no/does not disclose grades.

    This is correct. Also - representatives from Yale's SOM will be ringing the NYSE bell in the near future and formally announcing their global network where they partnered w. key schools in various geographic regions. Interestingly enough - INSEAD is one of them. What that exactly means will be fleshed out over the next few months as more and more info is released to the general public.
    http://www.businessweek.com/bschools/blogs/mba_adm...

  • In reply to 7S
    Fungible's picture

    7S:
    yale is a better known brand, but when it comes to recruiting its not the average joe that's evaluating you

    i think from people in finance, even in HK/singapore, Insead is better known than Yale SOM

    This. And you can do the exchange in Singapore with Insead.

  • bad2989's picture

    I was in the exact same position as OP, Yale or INSEAD, and I chose INSEAD. Yes, when people ask where I am leaving for, and I say INSEAD, the first reaction is, Huh? Then again my peers are not in business, and we're in the US. However, in reality, for people who will make a difference for OP in the future, INSEAD's standing is clear. Yale is going to improve over the years, but there are two clear advantages; a much larger and more established alumni base, and the quality and international breadth of the classmates. Also, most of the benefits of an MBA is extracted in the first several years afterward, so even if one does care about prestige and connections, look ahead at most 5 years. I was looking for a business school with an international focus, and I cared less about the name of the greater institution of Yale, and more about what a program could deliver. I already satisfied my prestige seeking parents with my ugrad... (on that note, don't let your parents decide for you, because most likely, they will say Yale given the two choices). Just keep in mind, not everyone knows INSEAD, but the reason it is known is important. Everyone knows Yale, but it is not the reason you are seeking. At least not soon enough to impact you. Best of luck on your decision making. Hope to meet you in either France or Singapore come Sept, if you choose INSEAD.

  • cinnamontoastcrunch's picture

    I agree with a lot of the comments made here, and OP has a good dilemma on his hands.

    There's a lot of factors that should play into this:

    INSEAD: 1 year MBA, cost savings, size of alumni network, strength of network abroad, great placement in consulting and PE overseas, opportunities to study in Fountainebleau, Singapore, and Wharton (with access to Wharton's OCR), greater international diversity in student body, less well-known brand to people that aren't in the know

    Yale SOM: 2 year MBA, small alumni base, good momentum in the rankings, proximity to NY for finance related jobs, better brand (to the average joe, not in terms of business schools), better US recruiting than INSEAD

    Given your long term goals abroad, I'd take INSEAD and time it so that I could spend a block at Wharton during recruiting season and get access to their OCR.

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