MBA in India vs. abroad vs MS vs Job
‘To be, or not to be, that is the question.’ Oh Hamlet! Choosing between life and death – if only you would have been alive today, we would have told you that the concern you were faced with was so primitive in nature, so uncomplicated and honestly, rather rhetoric. Try asking 21st century students because the question now is ‘To do an M.B.A. in India or abroad or to do an M.S. or to get a job.’ Now that’s a real dilemma!
The available and preferred courses of action for Indian undergraduates vary, what with the market ups and downs, industrial trends and fads, social media uprising and lately, unprecedented Prime Ministerial schemes. But getting an M.B.A. and an M.S. remain top contenders nonetheless. Selecting between the two is no easy feat because your life literally depends on this choice; so here’s a little information on the pros and cons of the two programs to help you make the better choice.
When impressionable teenagers finish high school, they get into a relationship with their technical discipline with starry-eyed enthusiasm. At the end of college, upon graduating, this relationship has matured a little.
When to do an M.S.?
If you believe that you are still in love, are willing to take things forward and make them permanent by saying your wedding wows, getting an M.S. is for you. This degree is a great way to add on to the knowledge you have amassed and very importantly, time you have invested in your engineering college in the last 4 years. It basically aims at providing in-depth knowledge and further specialization in a particular field. With time, innovation and continued learning, you could become a recognized and successful subject expert. There is tremendous scope in the designing, maintenance, development, testing, manufacturing and production divisions. Also, for such commitment, you could well be compensated by recruiters in economies like the U.S.A that are technology-friendly.
There exist certain risks like getting an admission into the right university, managing the finances required, identifying and joining the right company and getting lucky with the visa process. But if everything checks out, you stand to make a fortune. For the funding, if you manage to get a scholarship, it helps a lot but even scholarships don’t cover your complete expenses. There are various institutions, which help provide the required loans, which can be approached.
So, if you are a technically inclined person and plan to make a career in teaching, research or application of your discipline, preferably outside India, this is your best bet.
When to do an M.B.A.?
If you feel that you have reached a dead end with your relationship, you want to break up and start afresh, while still taking the learnings from your experiences, you should get an M.B.A. This will provide you with a techno-managerial experience and the degree is aimed at training future executives. This synergistic blend of skills not only opens up a lot of avenues but also improves your employability resulting in a sought-after combination. The fields that you can hope to enter are Investment banking, Supply-Chain management, Operations, Marketing, Equity research etc. where, most recruiters tend to favour candidates with an engineering background.
An M.B.A. from foreign universities provides an international perspective on business, exposes you to cultural diversity and in some cases, has better infrastructure and professors. This can prove to be very advantageous if you plan on working abroad afterwards which a lot of students do, because of the (very) fat pay-checks. But, if you plan on returning back, you need to understand that certain top tier colleges have a brand value that helps. Thereafter it is not worth it.
Another point is that in order to be able to do a meaningful M.B.A. abroad, you necessarily need to have 2 to 5 years of work experience. Add to that the fact that the cost of pursuing this degree is huge, even with scholarships, which translates to the return on investment coming after a much longer time. You might even have to get a job while studying to help with the day-to-day expenses. If you can afford to manage this, this is a very successful option in the long run. But if you cannot, and decide to do M.B.A. in an Indian University, you can be relieved on the job experience front because although it does help, there is no definite requirement.
Now, if you have clarity about your future goals, why you want to do management, crack CAT or other similar exam and get into one of the best programs offered in the Tier I universities, this choice can prove to be highly rewarding because the placements are fast catching up with their foreign counterparts. In case you do not, these two years might not make any drastic change in the salaries offered to you with the added setback of the time and financial resources spent. Also, the roles offered might not be like you might have wanted them to be.
When to get a job?
You know that phase where you don’t know if your relationship has reached that level where it is ready for the next step, when you think you don’t know your partner well enough and need more time to discover each other or when you just don’t think you are financially stable enough? Well, if you are actually in this phase, the way to assist your period of discovery is to get a job.
For some people, financial conditions are not conducive for higher education and responsibilities need urgent attention – if you fall into this category, getting a job should be your plan of action to provide the required support. Once things stabilize, there always remains the option of going back and getting a masters. Some indeed take up a job with intentions to continue their education later. If you belong to the relatively small section of people who have found their dream job that also pays a decent salary, you should definitely not let that opportunity go.
One very important thing to keep in mind is that a lot of decisions are often based on perceptions instead of any real exposure to the concerned field of work. So, rather than jumping to conclusions and deciding to switch your field, getting a job will help you broaden your horizon as most undergraduate education is focussed more on theoretical aspects rather than practical context. A job gives a fair idea about what is the life you can expect in your particular field and whether or not you want that life. Having said this, there is a certain level of complacency that creeps in when you start to work and it gets difficult to then move out of your work cycle. This is why a lot of people who decide to pursue higher education after a short stint at a job never end up doing so.
GyanDhan is an education financing marketplace with an aim to equalize and expand access to higher education.