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Scholarships in the MBA World: Are They Common? How Can I Increase My Chances of Getting One?

Updated: Jan 4

An MBA is one of the most sought after post-graduate degrees worldwide. Not only do students seek an MBA for higher education, but working professionals often consider enrolling in these programs mid-career.


While the return on investment in an MBA degree is high, the tuition fees for a prestigious business school can also be high. So, if you have less financial flexibility, scholarships are an ideal supplement.


Scholarships are fairly common in the MBA community. Most business schools offer a number of scholarships to candidates who wish to pursue an MBA from their institution. As you might imagine, these scholarships are in high demand and can be very competitive.


You must demonstrate an exemplary track record in your academic career, as well as experience in the field to be eligible for a scholarship in the first place. So, for anyone who wishes to get a scholarship to pursue an MBA, it’s essential that they hone in on their core competencies to increase their odds.


Increasing Your Chances for Getting a Scholarship for an MBA

MBA programs are competitive, and only a select group of candidates will be eligible for scholarships. However, it’s not impossible to get a scholarship for an MBA. Here are some tips that will help increase your chances of getting your degree funded.


Work On Getting a High GMAT/GRE Score

Most business schools have strict test score minimums for granting scholarships based on GMAT or GRE scores. So, the higher you score on these examinations, the better chance you have for getting a scholarship.


If your score on your first attempt isn’t up to par, you can always try again for a better score. With these types of exams, there are typically many testing opportunities, so it can’t hurt to sign up for a few, just in case. If you feel that retaking the test with a little more preparation will increase your score, it’s a wise idea to retake..


Be Quick On The Applications

Most of the time, scholarships are granted to candidates who apply early. Early applicants, on average, have strong GMAT/GRE scores and work experience. Scholarship panels will begin looking at those applications as soon as they roll in, so applying earlier could give you a better shot at securing a scholarship.

Early applications not only improve your chance of getting a scholarship, but they also increase the chance of admission generally.


Be Thorough With Your Research

Many business schools have separate scholarship programs, and applicants need to opt into those programs in addition to their applications. The deadlines for scholarship programs are sometimes even earlier than the institution’s application deadline. Be sure to conduct thorough research about scholarship programs before you begin your application.


There are different kinds of scholarships. Some are adjudicated on financial need, while others are merit-based. Make sure to keep track of this type of distinction. Depending on the type of scholarship, you might want to frame your application essays to highlight different stories from your life. Think about what the scholarship-providing institution is looking for, and make sure your application effectively represents those qualities.


Final Words

An MBA is a fantastic, useful program to pursue; however, it comes with a hefty price tag.. So, a scholarship is the best way to ease your financial burden. While scholarships are common in the MBA world, the competition is steep. With the proper preparation, you will have a better chance of getting one. Good luck!


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