• Varun Hariharan
  • 12 karma

Hey All!

I am Varun, a first year MBA Student at Brandeis IBS. I thought of starting this thread to help all those, who intend to apply/ applying/ have applied to Brandeis for the MBA program or it's other Graduate Programs.

Since I was in the same position last year I completely understand the anxiety and need to get 1st hand information from current students and trust me it is a boon as it helps you know the actualities of the school beyond the numbers and the website.

B-School is definitely much more than what prospective students think of it to be, so please do not hesitate to post your queries and I will try my best to answer them in the most elaborate manner.



  • hi, varun im planning to join brandeis this fall for th.... 15 May '15.
rishabh kapoor @mail_rishabh

hi, varun 

im planning to join brandeis this fall for the mba program.

can you tell me how the college is and what about placements and what all should i do? pls revert back.

Thanks a lot Idiopathist! Your detailed break-down really helps in understanding the facts that should be understood and analyzed before making a composite and uniformed decision!

I am looking forward to a career in marketing and advertising. Now, I have a friend who is currently a MBA student at Thunderbird and his interests lie in marketing as well. Just now, he secured an internship with L'oreal in NY. Now having said that, as per as your response and some prior research I have done, Brandeis is primarily a Jewish College, having proficient and efficient professors specializing in the financial stream. Therefore, my research has shown that Brandeis suits students or professionals wanting to pursue finance as a career. On the other hand, I have a couple of contacts who have graduated from Brandeis but are now currently employed as marketing professionals elsewhere, not necessarily in Boston.

Practically, I as a prospect student would like to study and work in a stream that I want to follow. Having said that, Brandeis is not known for its marketing programs. But as rightly said by you, yes, Brandeis does have a diverse culture where there can be a vivid integration of opinions and ideas that will open up more contacts and actually succor the chances of grabbing more opportunities. I have also received a 50% scholarship with 25% University Loan. Also, the fee structure is not that intimidating as Thunderbirds.

But there is a clear trade off here. Thunderbird is a better ranked University and its international business program is considered numero-uno globally (or so it is said). But it is expensive overall. I have lived in U.S. before and as a former student of the American education system, I know how colleges and universities work there. Boston would have hell of a competition (as rightly mentioned by you) as some of the best schools are situated in that area. And as an international student, it would be very hard if not impossible to secure a credible job there.

But hey, life is full of choices! The ones we take the most time to decide on are generally the ones which are prolific and matter the most! But thank you again for your incredible insight! Honestly, I was not expecting such an articulate and descriptive reply!

What is your profile if you dont mind me asking? Do you come from a financial background?

Thanks again Idiopathist!


It was my pleasure in putting down my views and great that it helped you to an extent! :)

I've done my Engineering in Computers and have worked with a Bank.

Good luck for the Vital decision you will make!

Hi Guys,

My name is Abhishek Mahapatra. Just got an acceptance letter from Brandeis IBS with 50% scholarship and 25% University Loan. I have also Thunderbird as an option for their MBA.

I just wanted to ask how many of you are planning to go to Brandeis? As it is a relatively new program, is the IBS MBA a reputed one to that? I have done some prior research and I have found that Thunderbird is better ranked than Brandeis in terms of exposure and recruitment. What do you guys think?

I would really appreciate if someone can help me on this topic!


Hey Abhishek,

First of all Congratulations on your admits to Brandeis and Thunderbird!

I have accepted the offer from Brandeis and will be joining this fall :)

Now coming to the dilemma you are facing. Firstly, which is the field that you intend to pursue and what kind of profile are you seeking post MBA?

During my research, what I came across is that, except for the top 20-30 Schools rankings are not of much significance because at the end of the day they are just by media publishers based on different parameters.
What you must look for, is the strength of the department that you intend to opt as electives, the kind of opportunities available in that geographical range and yes the kind of environment that you prefer. And yes the Location does play a huge role when you consider Tier 2 schools.

Now as far as my limited knowledge about Thunderbird goes, I believe it's strength is Global Management/International Business Management(But you will have to talk to students/alumni about it in detail). On the other hand, Brandeis's strength is Finance & Economics and then comes International Business. So align your goals to what each school has on offer as it's strength.

As far as employment is concerned, I believe all Tier 2 school students have to work their way out to a great extent, baring the situation when he/she gets into a company that the school has good ties with and that recruits regularly. So this is where Location could matter and if the kind of companies you are targeting are there in Arizona/Boston or no.

As you said Brandeis is young, but is moving ahead rapidly and has Fantastic faculty! Also the kind of International Diversity(more internationals than Americans!) among the student pool that Brandeis would have, will in all respect give you the Global feel! The disadvantage could be that you would be competing with almost 15-16 B School students for jobs around Boston (A Challenge!) including the likes of Harvard, MIT, BU. But then if you are good, then why wouldn't you break through and if aren't then no B School could get you a job :P

Lastly, funding could also be a criteria for many.

These were a few views of mine. I hope it helps you make an informed decision! Do reach out if you have any other queries

I've got the admission letter into IBS.Can you tell the process to get the I-20 ?

Congratulations Powerbar!

You have to mainly send in your financial documents and your passport copy (they accept and prefer all scanned copies :))

You can get the detailed requirements on the site :)

Rohan Mody Says
Hey! so have u finalized on Baruch?

Mostly not opting for it...
linhsit Says
I've just got my I-20 today. So excited Have you got your I20?

Yes i have!
linhsit Says
I also got an admit from Brandeis MAief Program. Hope to see you around!

Thats great! Will definitely see you there
costica Says
Hey guys. I applied for the IBS MBA 2 weeks ago. Do you have any idea how long does it take until they give you a response? Also, i already had a face to face interview with one of the office of admissions members before applying. Do you think i will have to give another interview?

Hey Costica,

The entire process including the decision will take approximately 6-8 weeks(It took me 7). Well your question on the interview depends on the admissions team. If they feel they have got to know you enough they might waive that considering you have had a face to face i/v already. But again I would say it depends, wait for their response. They should let you know in say 2-3 weeks more.

Cheers and Goodluck!
Well the website says 85% of the people were placed last year... and 86% foreign national students are placed...

so i thought the numbers are decent... help me understand...

Hey Ray,

My view was based on talking to alumni and current students. But then again it depends which field and what kind of profile are you looking for.
i just got an interview invite from GW... please help me with the interview questions and overall experience please...

also i thought GW has almost 100% placements... is that not true?

Hey Ray,

Well placements aren't 100%, dunno from where u got that. It isn't too great for International Students though. The private companies that come to the school also mostly recruit Citizens.