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#97 Michigan Ross MBA Program & Admissions Q&A with Son Nguyen

Son Nguyen, Associate Director of Admissions, Michigan Ross

“We do a lot of action-based learning and group-based projects. We want to make sure our students are good communicators and collaborative and I think there’s a really strong idea of students having a ‘pay it forward trait’ – people really care about helping each other out here.”

Son Nguyen, Associate Director of Admissions, discusses what makes the Michigan Ross MBA and culture unique and offers his best tips for how to stand out in your essays and interviews. The admissions team prizes strong communication and interpersonal skills as well as community-oriented applicants with a strong idea about how Ross could accelerate their careers.

Core to the Ross MBA is the Multidisciplinary Action Project (MAP), a mandatory 8-week team consulting project in 2nd semester of year 1. No classes are required during this time. This signals Ross’ commitment to action-based learning and preparing first year students for internships and jobs in new industries/functions as 88% of graduates make the switch.

Besides being ranked Top 10 by US News & World Report in 9 out of 10 MBA specializations, Ross also boasts 3 centers focused on social impact: the Center for Social Impact, the Center for Positive Organizations, and the ERB Institute for Global Sustainable Enterprise. Students have the flexibility to take 10 out of their 57 credits outside the business school (Michigan has 100 graduate programs ranked top 10 in the US). Ross has the academic heft to go along with its devoted alumni base.

Also interesting is Michigan Ross’ placement footprint not just in the Midwest (as expected) but in the West (20%) and Northeast US (20%). 98% of graduates last year had job offers within 3 months of graduation.

About Our Guest

Son Nguyen is Associate Director of Admissions at Stephen M. Ross School of Business, University of Michigan, where he has been since 2014. Previously he was a Corporate Recruiter for Target and Assistant Director of Admissions for the University of Notre Dame. Son got his Bachelors from Notre Dame and his Masters of Science in Strategic Communications from Columbia.

Listen on for the insider’s scoop…

last updated November 2016

Touch MBA’s Michigan Ross MBA’s Fast Facts

Program Highlights (4:18)

  • University of Michigan Ross School of Business founded in 1924
  • 1 intake / year in Fall
  • Length: 20 months
  • Campus in Ann Arbor, Michigan, a college town and the most educated city in the US. Ann Arbor is 25 minutes away from the Detroit airport.
  • ~415 participants/intake
  • 33 nationalities/intake, class is 31% international
  • Students ranked Corporate Strategy, CSR and General Management highest
  • Ross offers a Fast Track in Finance, Healthcare Concentration and Real Estate Development Certificate
  • Michigan has 100 graduate programs ranked in Top 10; MBA students can take 10 of their 57 credits at any of the graduate programs at the University of Michigan
  • Partnership with 20 exchange partners in 15 countries
  • Year 1: Impact Challenge, 11 required core courses, 8-week MAP consulting project. Year 2: Choose from 200 electives, global courses, global semester exchange
  • Rankings: #20 Financial Times 2016, #21 Economist 2016, #12 US News & World Report 2017, #10 Bloomberg Businessweek 2015
  • Ranked Top 10 by US News in Accounting, Entrepreneurship, Finance, International Business, Management, Marketing, Non-profit, Production / Operations, Supply Chain / Logistics
  • Other MBAs: Part-time Evening and Weekend MBA, Executive MBA
  • Over 20 dual degrees offered
  • Accredited by AACSB

Admissions (21:56)

  • 3 deadlines from Oct, Jan, Mar, get a decision within 2-3 months
  • 3,207 applications received, 907 admitted, 407 enrolled, 28% acceptance rate
  • Avg GMAT: 708 (90% range 660 – 760), Avg GPA: 3.36 (90% range 2.9 – 3.8)
  • GRE accepted
  • Avg age: 27, Avg work experience: 5.3, work experience recommended
  • Min TOEFL: n/a, IELTS: n/a
  • 99% of interviews are conducted by Ross 2nd year MBAs, the rest are done by Ross alumni
  • About 60^ of applications participate in an optional MBA Team Exercise held on campus and locations around the world

Financing (38:58)

  • Full-time MBA Tuition: $61,590/year USD so $123,180.
  • Recommended budget: $22,500/ year USD so $45,000
  • 25-35% of class awarded scholarships
  • Scholarship amounts range from $5,000 to full-tuition
  • Scholarships are merit-based and awarded with offer, based on “academic ability, professional and personal achievements, and potential to contribute to our community.”
  • 2nd year need based scholarships and institute/center/club based scholarships are also awarded based on 1st year impact
  • Int’l students don’t need cosigner for loans

Career (42:11)

  • Michigan Ross MBA – Full-time placement report for Class of 2015 (YES)
  • 92% of graduates had jobs within 3 months of graduation
  • Average Salary (bonus): $118,274 ($27,905)
  • Graduates in 2012 experienced 107% increase in salary after 3 years
  • Top 5 regions graduates worked in: 38% Midwest US, 23% West, 20% Northeast, 7% Southwest, 5% South, 5% Asia
  • Top 5 industries: 31% Consulting, 18% Technology / Telecoms, 11% Consumer Goods, 7.5% Financial Services, 7.5% Investment Banking
  • Top 5 functions: 36% Consulting, 21% Finance, 21% Marketing, 6.4% General Management, 6.4% Operations
  • Top recruiters: Amazon (34), McKinsey (22), Deloitte (20), BCG (14), PwC (12), Bain & Co.(9)
  • 50 2nd-year students serve as peer coaches
  • 45,000 Ross alumni worldwide in 90 countries

Get In Touch

Show Notes 


Two thoughts on “#97 Michigan Ross MBA Program & Admissions Q&A with Son Nguyen

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