Tech MBAs versus Traditional MBAs

If you study for an MBA today, the majority of your classmates will end up working either in consulting or the technology industries. With the increasing recruitment of MBA graduates by the tech sector, a trend is starting to emerge of schools offering specialized technology MBAs. Two schools that currently offer this type of MBA are Cornell Johnson and NYU Stern. If you are interested in a post-MBA career in technology, which MBA program would be right for you?

Cornell Johnson

Cornell's one-year Tech MBA is just four years old. This year, for the first time, the program moved to a new campus in Roosevelt Island, Manhattan. Students of the program spend their first three months on Cornell’s main campus in Ithaca. The remaining nine months are spent in Manhattan, giving students access to the technology scene in the city, which is certainly helpful for student as they search for jobs.

An important way to judge a program is by looking at their employment statistics. It is standard to look at the metric: percentage of the class that receives an offer within three months of graduating. The most recent data shows that 77% of students received an offer within three months. This percentage is lower than that of Cornell's two-year MBA program, which is 94%. However, a closer look reveals that 90% of US-work authorized and 69% of non US-work authorized received a job offer within three months of graduating. This breakdown is more comparable to the two-year MBA statistics. It is understandable that it may take international students more time to find a job, especially if they require work sponsorship.

NYU Stern’s Tech MBA

NYU will welcome its inaugural class in May 2018 for its one-year Tech MBA. It might be a gamble to join the first Tech MBA cohort but NYU Stern has a strong reputation and alumni base. The incoming class will gain access to the extensive resources that Stern has to offer as well as the advantage of being in New York City and having unlimited networking opportunities.

Application to this program are open through January 15, 2018 so don’t delay submitting your application.

Pros of the One-Year Program

-Cost is a major consideration for most who plan to study for an MBA. Completing an MBA at a lower tuition rate is a major benefit to the program.

-The lower opportunity cost of returning back to school and the ability returning to the labor force one year earlier is another reason that the one-year program is advantageous.

- A specialized curriculum will provide very applicable training to those who are interested in a career in technology. The coursework will be centered around entrepreneurship and innovation and will have a clear technology focus.

Cons of One-Year Program

-A lot of people chose to study for an MBA to make a change in their careers. For career changers, a one-year program will be very intensive and will now allow for as much time to figure out your next step or for reflection. It is absolutely possible to make a change; however,

-Traditional MBA recruitment follows a two year time frame, which allows students to gain experience in a new field before searching for jobs in that target area. Therefore, career changers may face challenges when they begin searching for a post-MBA job because they will be competing against other MBA with relevant internship experience.However, as one-year programs become more popular, companies have been adjusting their recruitment patterns to accommodate the programs’ students.

Overall, Cornell Johnson’s and NYU Stern’s Tech MBA programs are a great option. If you are considering either program, I would encourage you to have the mindset that the recruitment will be different than a two-year MBA and to prepare for your job search even before you step foot on campus.