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High school -> college, 2 scenarios

Patrician

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Lets consider two post high school scenarios.

1. Graduate from high school with top grades. Applying for college.

or

2. Graduate from high school with ok grades. Working two years at the financial department of a large company. Then apply for college.

Both have equal social skills. Which one will they pick?


Does work experience matter AT ALL when applying to a college?! :/
 

rach2jlc

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Originally Posted by Patrician
Does work experience matter AT ALL when applying to a college?! :/
I've posted this on other threads, but my friend who was studying art history did a summer curating internship at the Met. Museum of Art in NYC. That fall, he tried to get an independent study credit and his advisor told him, "No real life activity could POSSIBLY be as valuable as one of our courses." So, while this may not hold up for all majors/studies, it should at least show you how a lot of goofy ivory-tower academics who've never been OUTSIDE the institution feel about experience. Thus, I'd say that he should apply to College right outside of HIgh School. THEN, after finishing his undergrad, work for two years before applying to Grad School
 

MetroStyles

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I've never known anyone who went to a top school after taking time off after high school (with the exception of military service of some sort).
 

Milhouse

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I agree, Ivory Tower syndrome can be very strong, even in disciplines where it is "not expected". I've seen professors treat 40+ year old professionals in a field (e.g. 20 years of experience) as if they were undergrads, while the prof has maybe 10 summers of consulting experience in that field.

It baffles me at times, but it happens.


The other point I should make is that many schools are claiming they are getting so many applicants that they have to increase their minimum standards. So, competition is increasing. While that job may set someone apart, it may not set them apart in a good way to a college.
 

rach2jlc

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Originally Posted by Milhouse
While that job may set someone apart, it may not set them apart in a good way to a college.
I agree; I think colleges would see you as being two years behind your peers instead of two years more experienced. But, like I said, overall I think many professors/academics are very immature human beings. I think it imperative for a student to work "in the real world" at some point in their lives... not only in school, but I also did it both after undergrad and after my MA (before going back for doc work). This work was RELATED to my area of study, but was still valuable in teaching me to grow up. Contrast this to some friends of mine who went straight from undergrad to their masters and then onto their PhD. They are very smart or "well trained" in critical thinking, but they are incredibly immature and have no idea how the real world or real people's lives work. When they finished their doctorates, they went straight into University teaching and research. It's all they know and so when a student comes in with different experiences, how do you think they will be viewed? As irrelevant, mostly...
 

Patrician

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  1. How common is it for ppl in the US to take a year or two off from school? To either work or travel.
  2. Does age matter for MBA at top schools?
 

rach2jlc

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Originally Posted by Patrician
How common is it for ppl in the US to take a year or two off from school? To either work or travel.
AFTER your undergrad is finished, quite common (I did this and so did many others I know; I ABSOLUTELY recommend it). Between high school and college, I'd say quite uncommon (I can't think of anybody I went to school with who did that, most especially those hoping to get into top-10 or top-20 programs). Undergrad believes it is teaching you critical thinking preparation for life/career, so really most programs are dismissive of you and your life before you entered their program. Sad but true. Grad/doc programs are different, though, because they are training professionals and/or practitioners. As such, relevant experience can help you there (or, at the very least, it won't HURT you).
 

Milhouse

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Originally Posted by Patrician
  1. How common is it for ppl in the US to take a year or two off from school? To either work or travel.
  2. Does age matter for MBA at top schools?

B) Age does matter for MBAs at top schools. E.g. if you are fresh out of undergrad you better be something incredibly extraordinary. They want to teach experienced professionals how to push their careers even farther. If you haven't had a career, how will you know if what they are teaching you has value or not? How will you be able to contribute to classroom discussions? Etc.
 

Septavius

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Out of high school with top grades would likely yield better scholarships as well. Something to keep in mind.
 

Patrician

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If, lets say, one would work at this financial department for about two years and then go to a regular school. Would he be admitted into a top school for his MBA? Could his two years before college be seena as sufficient for MBA studies?
 

Connemara

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Originally Posted by Patrician
If, lets say, one would work at this financial department for about two years and then go to a regular school. Would he be admitted into a top school for his MBA? Could his two years before college be seena as sufficient for MBA studies?
Absolutely not, sorry. Doesn't work like that.
 

jagmqt

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If you're talking undergrad...go to college right after high school...you can alwasy get a summer internship, for college credit, in the business you want to work in...I would suggest working between undergrad and graduate programs, though.

Also, considering the state of the economy, it may be difficult finding and keeping a job in the financial department of a large company...college is the best spot to be during tough economic times...

Just my thoughts, take 'em or leave 'em

jag
 

bluemagic

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Wait...how could you even get a (decent, non-intern) job at a financial department without a college degree?
 

Patrician

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Ok, here are the facts about me and my situation:

- 20 yrs old
- Graduated June 2007 (with so-so grades)
- Work at big company at Accounts Payable department (since graduation. Got it through connections.)
- Live in EU
- Great social skills and all that. My boss loves me and jadda jadda. Just didnt care that much about high school.

so...what to do now? Can I somehow benefit from my working experience or am I totally screwed?
 

Milhouse

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I know close to nothing about the EU, so I really can't help you.

In the US, I'd say make some connections with professors at the schools you are interested in, see what they say about things. Follow their advice, which will probably involve crafting your application essays very carefully. Let them know when you submit your application so they can hopefully have a hand in getting you in.
 

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