10 Questions Before You Apply

There are many MBA programs available to you. Before you choose, take the time to ask yourself these 10 questions. Your answers will help determine which program is the best fit for you.

1. Do you need to continue working while you earn your degree?

The Vanderbilt MBA programs for executives classes are tailored to the schedules of professionals seeking to advance their careers without interrupting their career momentum. And because you’ll bring new solutions and perspectives to work, the weekend learning is very beneficial, often improving productivity. At school, you are regularly working to resolve job-related issues.

2. Do you want more than just a diploma to hang on your wall?
The Vanderbilt MBA is highly respected among leaders throughout the business world. With a comprehensive, rigorous 60-credit-hour MBA degree, the Vanderbilt Executive MBA and the Americas MBA for Executives provide a comparable business education and diploma to the weekday MBA program, but with assignments and discussions designed for professionals already well into management careers. The program’s tough academic standards and selectivity assure that you will be challenged intellectually and professionally.

3. Do you have immediate challenges that require your attention?
As students and alumni of the program will attest, you’ll gain practical, proven business skills and tools that you can apply to your job almost immediately—skills and tools that others in your organization will notice. By gaining a better understanding of a full range of business disciplines, you’ll step beyond your current role to apply new tools learned on the weekend to problems at work the following week.

4. Do you look at your education as an investment in yourself?
Vanderbilt Executive MBA graduates surpassed the typical return on investment among Executive MBA programs. Graduates of the Class of 2010 reaped an average 20 percent salary increase during the two years of the program.

5. Are you seeking additional responsibility at work?
Students master proactive decision making, innovative problem solving and strategic thinking that enable them to broaden their outlook and organizational contributions immediately. Additionally, the Americas MBA is ideally suited for executives who have (or desire) a cross-border leadership role.

6. Do you need to strengthen your leadership and strategic skills?
The curriculum for both Vanderbilt MBA programs for executives are tailored specifically for established mid- and senior-level executives who want to advance even further. The program’s emphasis on leadership and strategic skills provides you with the higher-level perspectives that will allow you to guide your organization effectively.

7. Do you want to expand your global understanding and experience?
In any given Executive MBA class, about 18 percent of the students are foreign nationals or naturalized U.S. citizens. Others travel abroad extensively in their professional roles. The Vanderbilt Executive MBA International Residency includes corporate visits and networking events that will diversify your practical knowledge of the global market. In the Americas MBA, your second year will be spent as part of an international cohort of executives from Brazil, Mexico and Canada.

8. Do you work best in a collaborative environment?
Vanderbilt executive students and alumni will tell you that the small group dynamics in a collaborative atmosphere make all the difference between knowing and truly understanding. While both MBA programs are built around student and work groups, the Executive MBA C-Team combines the full set of skills and perspectives of a typical executive office lineup—representing four or five industries and the expertise of financial, operations, engineering/development, systems and marketing/sales executives. As a result, the program prepares you to function effectively as part of a team and exposes you to viewpoints, solutions and perspectives different from your own.

9. Do you want professors who offer real-world experience and theory?
Drawing upon their consulting and research expertise, our internationally acclaimed faculty (from Vanderbilt and other Americas MBA Alliance Schools) bring the classroom alive with real business problems and industry insights. And because the program is small by design, you’ll have unparalleled access to these individuals as you get to know them both personally and professionally.

10. Could you benefit from a diverse and extensive business network?

At Vanderbilt, you become part of a diverse, extensive and committed network of business leaders who will be there to offer advice and perspectives whenever and wherever your career takes you. Your network will include your classmates, with whom you will remain connected long after you graduate, as well as nearly 8,000 alumni who have earned the MBA and other advanced business degrees at Vanderbilt.