Our consultants receive a lot of questions from clients about applying to MBA programs through The Consortium for Graduate Study in Management. I’ve heard myths flying around that applying to one (or more) of the 18 Consortium schools through The Consortium’s application is disadvantageous. But as the former director at two Consortium schools, I can assure you that nothing could be further from the truth — provided you meet the Consortium’s minimum qualifications.
Though the requirements, the schools, and the corporate partners have changed over its 49-year history, the Consortium is not only the best deal in town; it also gives Consortium members an alumni network that expands throughout the 18-member schools.
Initially, The Consortium provided opportunities for young African American men to have a fair chance at rising up the corporate ladder via the MBA. Later, the Consortium added Hispanic Americans, Native Americans and women to its mix. Membership came along with the fellowship.
However, after the Supreme Court decided on the Gratz vs. Bollinger and Grutter vs. Bollinger cases, the Consortium opened up its doors to offer membership to selected applicants that further the mission of The Consortium in providing inclusion of African Americans, Hispanic Americans and Native Americans in business. Members and fellows do not have to belong to these groups. Thus, membership is no longer race-based, but rather mission driven. Applicants must also demonstrate the ability to succeed in an MBA program.
Like the undergraduate Common Application, candidates can apply to up to 6 Consortium schools with only one application for a fraction of the cost the candidate would incur applying to each of these schools separately. The catch: the candidate must rank order the schools. Having just attending a Consortium recruiting event, the Admissions representatives on the panel suggested that candidates rank order the schools from the most preferred to the least preferred. However, in order to obtain a fellowship, I believe there is a strategy involved in the ranking.
To be sure, Consortium membership assures the candidate of access to the orientation and corporate partners. In fact, many candidates receive internship offers prior to the start of school. Membership, however, does not guarantee admission to the schools of choice, nor does it guarantee a full-tuition fellowship.
To summarize the benefits:
1. One application for up to six schools at one low cost.
2. Access to vast alumni network of 18 schools that includes mentorship from Consortium alumni (formal or informal).
3. If selected as a member, access to corporate sponsors at orientation
4. If selected as a fellow, full tuition and stipend
To learn more about applying through the Consortium and the strategy behind the rank order, please contact me for a free consultation. Moreover, Accepted will offer Consortium applicants a special coupon code for 10% off all purchases of $2000 or more for services to help you apply through the Consortium. The best deal in town just got even better.
By Natalie Grinblatt Epstein, an accomplished Accepted.com consultant/editor (since 2008) and entrepreneur. Natalie is a former MBA Admissions Dean and Director at Ross, Johnson, and Carey.