Is getting a FT MBA worth It for me? Good stats (770 gmat and high gpa) but a few years older than average.

Resipsa1's picture
Rank: Senior Monkey | 68

I'm 32 and after graduating an OK law school (top 30 but nothing special) I decided to go into finance in an area I had studied significantly in law school (dodd-frank and otc derivatives). Ended up with a back office job with a BB, but got promoted in 1 1/2 years to FO spent a couple years there, earned my CFA charter, and then left that for a risk job at another BB. Now thinking about going back to get MBA. Maybe stay in OTC space or maybe consulting as end game. Have 770 GMAT and good law school and undergrad GPA. I just don't know if it's a little too late in the game for me. From chicago and have family so thinking booth or Kellogg. Part time not an option, seems like waste of money. Is fulltime worth it; assuming I can get in.

Comments (14)

May 22, 2017

No

May 22, 2017

Thanks. Care to expand on that?

May 22, 2017

No

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May 23, 2017

No it's not worth it in your case.

May 23, 2017

Thanks. Any chance you'd be able to provide a little more detail on why?

May 23, 2017

Could you please elaborate why? Thanks

May 23, 2017

Relevant for me too. Same boat - 20 GMAT points.

Wow at your GMAT.

May 23, 2017

Dude Booth or Kellogg would be so worth it. if you get in at those schools and you have a good chance, man go for it.

May 23, 2017

Might consider Executive MBA programs

May 23, 2017

Thanks for the reply. I thought about that, but believe it would be more for a person who is already relatively senior--like director level. Maybe not geared to someone who wants to start doing management consulting or get to a good trading desk with a BB. The desk I was on before was definitely on lower end of the prestige/comp spectrum.

Best Response
May 23, 2017

Are you doing this to 'check the box' before you feel like you lose the chance or do you really think the degree will help meet your career goals?

I'm going to assume you recruit for consulting, since I don't see the point of a full time MBA to go back to your industry. That's exactly what part time is for.

First, if that's what you want to do, have you considered just lateraling now to a post-MBA role?

If that's not in the cards - at 32 (34-35 when you graduate), resumes matter. For school recruiting and for employment recruiting. You seem to check the boxes, but be aware that you're evaluated differently than a 25 year old. It might matter depending on your career interests. Consulting won't care what you did, just what you did while you were there.

Most post MBA roles are a grind. You've got a family. Are you really, really sure you want to target a consulting job where you'll be away from your family four days a week, on call the other three, burnt out when you're home, and treated like a bitch by people your age (or younger!)? There will be people 2-4 levels above you by the time you graduate that are your age or younger. Like, your peers in age will be competing for partner, and you'll be stapling their powerpoint decks. You wouldn't be the first to do it, but it's something to think about. I'm doing this in my 30's, but I'm not married and I literally took some leadership opportunities here specifically to get comfortable taking instruction from someone 10 years my junior when I finish school. It's a pill to swallow.

There will only be a handful of people your age in the program. That being said, the 'married' community at both Booth and Kellogg is pretty good. Location can help socially. If you don't have the option to move neighborhoods, you'll be missing out on a lot of the full time experience.

I'm very confused as to why you're discounting part time programs, especially if you're looking to potentially remain in OTC.

First, you say the cost of part time doesn't seem worth it but full time might. If you go full time don't get a role in consulting, how would you feel with a corporate etc that paid $100-150k? I had a backup plan I was comfortable with and confident about and knew I'd be doubling my pre-MBA income either way.

Second, you would be in more of your peer set going part time. You can work while in school - if you make $100k and spend 60k on school, but would have made $0k and spent $100k going full time - if you actually care about a Booth or Kellogg degree, I wouldn't call that a waste of time. Especially if your firm will help foot the bill. You are fortunate to live in a city with TWO of the absolute best part time programs out there. They pour an incredible amount of academic resources into these programs. Will you lose out socially? Yeah, but as a 35 year old married man I'm guessing you don't want to be slamming beers at 3AM on Thursday anyways. Half your classes would still be full time students at Booth, we can take night classes (I don't know about Kellogg). Will you lose out for OCR? A little bit, but the consulting firms all still look at the part time candidates, and your GMAT will set you apart from the pack while you'd be average at best for full time recruits. It'd be interested to hear about why you think full time is the better option for you.

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May 23, 2017

Thanks so much for the response. The reason I'm concerned about the part time program is I have a couple friends in the pt at booth. External job and internal advancement opportunities are dismal. This is backed up with the below thread.

As for for taking s**t from people who could be considered my junior, i have some experience in that. I graduated from a decent law school where I published work on dodd-frank and otc derivatives and I worked in the BO for almost two years before moving to FO. I kid you not when i tell you that when we used to go out with the sales traders, one was so befuddled that I was in BO and knew as much as i did about securities/derivatives law that he thought I was an SEC/CFTC rat. It was ackward.

While I learned a lot in law school and loved the people, those three lost years (and the endless questions of why I'm not practicing) will make things more difficult.

https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/part-time-m...

Jun 19, 2017

After re-reading your post, I realize I failed to answer a couple questions. I'm considering an MBA program because I have not been able to make a lateral move to the post-mba jobs that I can see myself enjoying for the next 25 years. I had hoped the CFA plus law degree would suffice, but this doesn't seem to be the case. Besides just career advancement, I really did enjoy learning the material in the CFA and look forward to the opportunity to study those topics in much greater detail in b-school.

If I do decide to go back to school, it will have to be the ft program though. From what I hear first hand and read in blogs, the pt just doesn't open doors the way the ft program does. I already have a law degree, I can't afford another degree that might turn out to be worthless.

Thanks again for the very well reasoned reply to my question.

May 27, 2017
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